Many SEO Experts agree that Google Analytics is one of the most useful free tools available in our industry. It is free, easy to install and easy to use. There is so much information that, if installed and interpreted correctly, it would be near impossible not to improve several aspects of a website under evaluation.
It is not, however, always easy to interpret Google Analytics data. This is especially true for the average small business/website owner. Let’s consider the page views section.
Many people look towards the page views section of Analytics to gauge viewer engagement. It is commonly thought that, the higher the page views, the more actively engaged the viewers are with the site and the more likely the viewers are to contact/purchase/return. While this may be true for some sites, it is not necessarily true for all sites.
So, if a high page rank is not indicative of a higher level of user engagement, what exactly is it telling us? Well, a high page rank could be an indication that your website is not well laid out. This is especially true for ecommerce sites. In all likelihood, viewers are having a difficult time finding exactly what they are looking for and, as a result, are having to delve more deeply into your site than they would prefer.
A better indication of user engagement would be to 1. Take a look at bounce rates and 2. Implement well designed goal funnels then track your abandonment rates. If either of these two numbers is higher than you are comfortable with, it is time to decide how to alter your site so that you are achieving the right engagement / higher conversions.