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What is the Google Analytics Audience report?

The Google Analytics Audience report is a fast growing section within Google Analytics. The audience reports aim to give as much insight into who your users are and what context they interact with your site from.

Used with the right data interpretation approach the google analytics audience report can bring a huge amount of value to your website. Highlighting areas requiring improvement, ie small number of return visitors. To areas performing well, ie high level of engagement with a certain age demographic.

The Audience report has a huge amount of data, so for this post we will only cover the first 5 of these.

New Google Analytics Audience Reports

In recent months a number of new reports have been added. These reports give great insight into the value of your website users. The reports covered in this post:

  • Active Users
  • Lifetime Value – New Beta
  • Cohort Analysis – New Beta
  • Audiences
  • User Explorer

Active Users Report

The active user report allows you to track active users on your site from across 1, 7, 14, 21 days. It allows you to quickly get an understanding of the type of visitors you are getting to your site.

Are you obtaining a peak of users on a single day, or are you getting a steady flow of visitors across the month. Depending on your business goals, this can be very helping in developing your marketing strategy and site messaging.

The metrics on this report are relative to the date range you are currently viewing. Ie if you have a date range of 1 – 31 December, Day 1 will be the 31st of December the last day of your report.

A lot of interest on a single day can signal that there is initial interest in your site but it fails to developer long-term value. Again all dependent on what your business goals are, but in most cases return visits and long-term engagement with your site is preferred.

Life Time Value Report

The Life Time Value report helps you gain insight into how valuable your audiences are across multiple acquisition channels. It helps you understand value, based on lifetime performance across multiple sessions.

The report allows quick identification of lifetime value for users through social or referral traffic. This information can help determine where to allocate resources to acquire more of the high value audiences.

Cohort Analysis Report

The Cohort Report allows you to analysis groups of users based on common dimensions from analytics. You are able to review the behavior and performance of these groups of users and identify areas of success and improvement from high and low value users.

For example, users with the same acquisition date can be analyzed across the site. You are able to see, what pages this group of visitors viewed. How much revenue they generated and the kinds of devices they used. You are also able to quickly view how you acquired these users. Allowing quick evaluation of your lead generation strategy success.

This report is still in beta, so expect some changes and improvements over the coming months.

Audiences Report

The Audiences Report allows the creation of users you group together with attributes that are relevant to your business. These audiences can then be used as secondary dimensions in reports and a dimension in segments, custom reports and custom funnels.

The audiences can also be used in your adwords marketing, allowing for more tailored messaging to a specific user group you have defined.

The audiences report is powerful as it allows for user groups to be specifically defined and a deeper understanding of these users to be gained. For example, on an ecommerce site you are able to define users who visited a shoe product, then viewed that product again within a week and completed a purchase.

You could also create a group of users who visited a specific page of your website but didn’t return. This could help influence the content strategy of your site and potentially the need to add more similar content. Or more obvious pathways to more of the same content on your site.

For more information on the Audiences report see the official Google Analytics Audience report documentation.

User Explorer

The User Explorer report allows interrogation of an individual visit rather than aggregate user behavior. Individual user data is associated with either Client-ID or User-ID. The report shows the top 10,000 users for the sorting criteria you apply to the report.

This report is useful when wanting to personalize the user experience, particular if you are investing in personalization. This report can help you identify trends with use behavior and map out automation of these popular behaviors to better leverage the functionality of your site.

It can also give insight into a specific user experience: if you want to interrogate the behavior of an individual with a high order value. This may help you promote this user journey and product to try and duplicate the scenario with other similar user types.

For more information on the User Explorer report, see the official Google Analytics Audience documentation.

The Google Analytics Audience report are a hugely valuable data set. They help you understand the characteristic of your audience and evaluate their interaction with your website. These insights can help build clear business and technical action plans improving business outcomes.

Another post covering the next section of the Google Analytics Audience report is coming soon. With more ideas on how this report can be used to improve business outcomes.

Jen Cork

Author Jen Cork

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