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Setting up Google Analytics

In a recent post we looked at how you can use web analytics tools already included in your LetsHost Complete Hosting Plan to analyze your website traffic and gain valuable insight into how your visitors use your site.

While these basic log file analysis tools are fine for giving you a general overview of activity on your site, they offer a very basic user interface and a pretty inflexible window on your logfile data.

Enterprise class analytics software for free

Enterprise class analytics software can (and does) cost many thousands of Euro, but thanks to Google many of the features you’d typically find in high end commercial analytics software are now available for free. Welcome to Google Analytics. Setting up Google Analytics on your website is easy. Once you have a Google account (if you don’t already have one you can sign up for a Google account here), just head over to the Google Analytics website.

While you’re on the Google Analytics homepage, check out some of the great, free Google resources to help you get more out of the product. When you’re ready, just click on the blue “Access Analytics” button, and sign in with your Google credentials.
  • Follow the on-screen prompts to set up your analytics account.
  • Once you’ve created your account you’ll see a page with Analytics: Tracking Instructions. For a standard setup you can leave the settings on the left at the default (single domain) value
  • The code in the pane in the middle of your screen is your Google Analytics tracking code for your website.
  • You’ll need to copy this code and add it (or ask your web designer to add it) immediately before the closing </head> on every page on your site that you want to track.

That’s it. Google Analytics will start tracking data for your website, and offers you a wide range of metrics, tools, goals and customisations to help you make informed decisions about your online marketing.

For a quick overview of the basics, check out the video below, and check out the great free Google Analytics learning resources in the Google Conversion University.