How You Can Develop a Better Mobile Website Using Google Analytics
November 13, 2014, by Sebastian Maier
Nowadays, responsive design is almost the norm, at least as it concerns newly developed websites. However, few know what practical steps are really meaningful to sustainably improving the experience of a mobile website for the users.
In this article, I would like to show you how you can use the Google Analytics tool to develop a mobile website, which is not only better, but, above all, also achieves more results.
You can quickly gain an initial overview of how many mobile views a site receives using Google Analytics. To do this, click on Audience -> Mobile -> Overview and you will then receive a breakdown according to desktop, mobile, and tablet. Note that mobile represents smartphone here and not all mobile devices.
While discussing with customers, this analysis often provides the best argument why a website should also be designed responsively.
You can also find the devices under Audience -> Mobile. It is not only interesting to see which mobile devices users use in viewing a website, but also, which mobile devices have the highest and lowest conversion rates.
For instance, what would the responsive design of a website imply if the bounce rate of an Apple iPad is a third higher than that of a Windows tablet? How can this be optimized?
Screen resolution is also exciting in this menu item, since it gives hints on how the breakpoints of a responsive design should be planned.
Browsers and Operating Systems
Under Audience -> Technology -> Browser & OS, you have information on the software, with which the users visit the website. In this way, it is easy to see whether you should also optimize the website for older browser versions or if the current versions are sufficient.
Creating a Segment
A really practical function of Google Analytics is segmentation, a type of filter, with which sections of the website can be evaluated more easily and effectively.
To view this function, click on “Add segment” under the general target group view, select “New segment”, and tick “Yes” beside “Mobile device (including tablet)” under “Technology”. Obviously, don’t forget to enter the segment name and click save! Now you can view the Google Analytics results of the website completely via “mobile lenses”.
Here, the All pages view under Behavior -> Site Content is exciting. You will see which pages mobile users mainly visit under this menu. With this analysis, you can improve mobile navigation and find out which pages mobile users cannot find. Here, comparing the data for site visits from mobile devices and desktops is worth it.
The analysis under Behavior -> Site Content -> Exit Pages is also very informative for the same reasons.
I could give many more tips on how you can use the Google Analytics reports for mobile devices to improve a responsive design. I presume, however that after reading this article you have already developed some ideas of your own.
Do you also have tips on all the things you could evaluate using Google Analytics to make a mobile website a tad better?
(All images Ⓒ Google Analytics)