A Beginner’s Guide to Organic Traffic Audience Segmentation with Google Analytics

Call it a case of too much of a good thing.

Google Analytics puts a lot of data at your fingertips. It's a mountain of metrics, and a deluge of dimensions. With it, you can thoroughly explore your website visitors, their demographics and their behavior.

But by default, it throws everything into a huge bucket. The reports display statistics, graphs and charts for "All Users / Sessions".

And although it's perfect to get a picture at a glance, you have to break down a bit if you want to find the hidden treasure inside.

Mixing everything is good for smoothies, metallurgy and cocktails. For analysis, you want to separate and segment .

Segmentation in the analysis

Click a report in Google Analytics – Audience, Acquisition, Behavior, or Conversions – and you'll get an excellent overview of the data collected for your site. For all those who visited during the chosen period (the last 30 days by default).

 google-analtyics-hearing-presentation-30-days "class =" full-size alignnone wp-image-32383 "/> </p>
<p> The beauty of Analytics, however, is reducing from general to specific. To find the statue of David in the marble block. Or the rubbery core in the center of a Tootsie Pop. </p>
<p> With audience segments, you can divide this stack of data into manageable sections based on the criteria that matter most to you. What ideas are you looking for? </p>
<p> Segments include visitors who share common traits or behaviors. And the best part? You can decide exactly which traits and behaviors to group. </p>
<p> Knowing how many visitors you had last week is useful. But how many visitors did you get on office devices, from the United States, who looked at least three pages, but left without making any purchase? That's the power of the segments. </p>
<p> Segments give you an ultra-targeted overview of audience behavior, such as mobile visitors, which country, number of sessions with conversion, type of visitor, demographics, traffic source, value, browser, users with several sessions, etc. sure. </p>
<p> Sounds fantastic, does not it? Yet, <a href= 41% do not use any audience segments . Get out of this group.

There is no end to the possible combinations you could create (although technically false … you are limited to 1000 segments that can be edited in any which view, and 100 segments for a specific view). Create an ultra-precise segment for tracking and analysis that represents your exact audience and meets your specific needs.

Hit vs session vs user

When creating a segment, you can often assign the scope as a user session or hit so it is important to recognize the difference:

Hit – an individual interaction with your website (usually a page view); a visitor did, a visitor did, a visitor …
Session – a collection of hits; a full visit to a website
User – complete trip of a person with your website (can encompass multiple sessions)

Most experts suggest focusing on users and sessions. It all depends on the relationship you have with them.

Segments: a simple procedure

To start is fortunately simple. Even an Analytics lover can create, save and use segments.

To begin, simply click the + Add segment button at the top of any report.

 add-segment-google-analytics "class =" align-size-full-wp-image-32374 "/> </a> </p>
<p> You will then see the Segment dashboard, and you will see several options. At the bottom left you will find the column <strong> Show Segments </strong>. You can select All, System (preloaded segments on Google Analytics, such as Converters, New Users, and Organic Traffic), Custom (the segments you have created), Shared, Favorites (you can save segments to this favorites list by clicking the star next to their name), and Selected (the segments you are currently using). </p>
<p> Would you like to work with an existing segment (select from list), <a href= import from gallery (custom segments created and shared by others), or create your own segment (click + New segment to start over, or click the Actions drop-down list next to an existing list, and select Copy to use it as a base)?

 new-segment-import-from-gallery "class =" alignnone full-size wp-image-32375 "/> </a> </p>
<p> Let's resume <strong> Organic traffic </strong>. This will allow us to create a custom segment for all incoming organic traffic. </p>
<p> The following dashboard displays the parameters of the current segment. Because we chose to copy and develop the segment of organic traffic, there is already a criterion: </p>
<p> Average> corresponds exactly to> organic </p>
<p> On the right you'll see a segment summary (updated in real time when you add or remove criteria), and at the bottom left, the categories and filters that you can use to define your segment. </p>
<p> Options include demographics, technology, behavior, date of first session, traffic sources, enhanced e-commerce, conditions and sequences. </p>
<p> <a href=  Segment-google-analytics options "class =" full-size alignnone wp-image-32378 "/> </a> </p>
<p> Until here everything is fine. Still with me? </p>
<p> You will need zero, so we will add some additional filters to this segment. Click the + Add Filter button. </p>
<p> Then, click the Ad Content drop-down menu, and you'll see a long list of possible filters and criteria. Click around. To explore. There is also a practical search field at the top to save you time. </p>
<p> We will segment by users who viewed at least two pages during a session: </p>
<p>Type "Page Depth" in the search field and select it (it is under Behavior if you want to find it yourself)<br />
Click on "=" and select ">" (bigger than the symbol)<br />
In the empty field, enter 2</p>
<p> Your summary will be updated, and you will see the Middle: Organic and Page Depth> 2 fields under Conditions. This segment now includes all organic traffic visitors who view three or more pages during their session. </p>
<p> <a href=  segment-creation-conditions "class =" full-size alignnone wp-image-32377 "/> </a> </p>
<p> You begin to understand? Try this one for yourself: Add a country filter for UK visitors. </p>
<p> Done? Excellent. You can include this filter by adding another condition (Users> Countries> Contains> United Kingdom) or by clicking Demographics> Location> Countries> Contains> United Kingdom. Whatever the case may be, your resume will be updated and your segment will count more than visitors to the UK. </p>
<p> <a href=  segment-creation-demography "class =" full-size alignnone wp-image-32376 "/> </a> </p>
<p> We can make "organic" even more accurate by adding a filter under Traffic Sources> Source> Contains> google </p>
<p> Finally, give the segment a name that reflects what it is, for example UK Page Depth> 2 or something similar (all that works for you), and click Save. </p>
<p> Congratulations. You have just created your first audience segment. Glory! This one will only show organic traffic from the United Kingdom coming specifically from Google that has seen at least three pages. How is it for accurate data? It will be listed with all other segments available, ready to be called when you need them. </p>
<h2> Basic Segments </h2>
<p> But segments do not have to be complex. They do not need to include multiple criteria, either. They can be very simple and direct: </p>
<p>By source of traffic or medium (e-mail, social, paying, organic, direct, referent, google, facebook, twitter) to have an overview of the behavior of off-site visitors. Where do they come from and how do you find them?<br />
By type of user (new visitor compared to the recurring visitor, mobile relative to the office, frequent or infrequent visitor, long or short sessions, several page views per page) to get an overview of their commitment to your brand and your business.<br />
By location or language to better understand the demographics of your customers.<br />
By consulted content (product pages, payment page, thank you page) for an overview of their behavior on the site.<br />
By Commitment (more than x pages, more than x seconds) to see how much your content and your presentation interest them.<br />
In terms of revenue, products viewed or purchased, brands added to the cart, or even product variants such as specific sizes and colors.</p>
<p> The basic categories to the left of the Segment Dashboard – Enhanced Ecommerce Demographics (which requires the ec.js plugin) – are easy to navigate and implement. Try them. </p>
<h2> Advanced Options </h2>
<p> Conditions and sequences are considered advanced options. But that should not scare you (you have already mastered the conditions). </p>
<p> As we have already seen, <strong> Conditions </strong> simply defines a series of criteria that must be met in order for a visitor to be included in that segment. This allows a huge amount of customization. There is a bit of a learning curve – finding the right criteria and the right definition, for example – but there are a lot of tutorials that can guide you from beginner to professional in no time. </p>
<p> <strong> Sequences </strong> are a series of conditions that must be met in order (step 1, step 2, etc.), but the basic idea is the same. A sequence where users visit your shopping cart (step 1) but do not spend with a real purchase (step 2) gives you a mature audience for a follow-up. </p>
<h2> The more we are crazy </h2>
<p> Once you have some favorite segments, you can start comparing to each other. Navigate to any report, click + Add segment, choose up to four different, and then click Apply. You will then see the report with all the segments presented at the same time … color code for your convenience (thanks Google). Compare and nuance. </p>
<p> <a href=  segment-metric-comparison "class =" full-size alignnone wp-image-32379 "/> </a> </p>
<h2> Make you want </h2>
<p> The more you feel comfortable with the segments, the more you can create for all possible groups of your audience. </p>
<p> How about a segment that shows you frequent and recent visitors who have not bought anything yet? </p>
<p>+ Add a segment<br />
Behavior – Days since last session<br />
Behavior – Sessions> 4 (more than four)<br />
Behavior – Transactions = 0 (no purchases), or even Terms – Page Title – contains – thankyou.html (your order confirmation page, but be sure to select EXCLUDE rather than include )</p>
<p> Once you've created a segment like this, you can create an audience, and only target that group with ads promoting your free shipping, or the current sale, or a special coupon for trigger them (they are obviously interested). </p>
<h2> Creating an audience from a segment </h2>
<p> Segments provide you with valuable and targeted data. And it's a very good thing. </p>
<p> But they can extend beyond the Google Analytics dashboard if you create a <strong> Audience </strong> from a segment. </p>
<p> For the UK Page Depth> 2 segment we created earlier, suppose you would like to find a way to send them – and only them – a special ad for a discount only available to UK residents. </p>
<p> Go to the list of segments, find this segment, select Actions, and click Create Audience. </p>
<p> For this to work, your Google Analytics and AdWords accounts must be linked (but do not worry, Google will guide you if it's not connected yet). </p>
<p> Choose the view (your ecommerce site) and your destination (your linked AdWords account) and set the audience. The definitions (ie the criteria) will be prefilled according to the segment you have selected. </p>
<p> <a href=  google-analytics-define-audience "class =" align-size-full-wp-image-32380 "/> </a> </p>
<p> On the right you will see some fields: </p>
<p>For segments targeted on hits or sessions, you are limited to users in the last 7 days (this will present the estimated size of this audience by users who meet the criteria last week).<br />
The term of membership defines the duration during which visitors will remain members of this audience, once from 1 to 540 days. If you are creating an audience for visitors with a recent purchase, for example, you set this option for a relatively short period of time.<br />
User-targeted segments offer the option of 7, 14, or 30 days of retrospection. This is a period in which Google Analytics can go back and search for qualified users for l & # 39; hearing.<br />
Eligibility tells you where you can share this audience, such as search ads and display ads (Adwords) or Google Optimize (for testing and customization).</p>
<p> Give the public a name to help you remember them in AdWords, and then click Save. Completed. </p>
<p> When you're the next member of your AdWords account, you can select this audience and create targeted advertising for your exclusive coupon for those in the land of tea, bangers and mashed potatoes. </p>
<p> This may be the sweet push they need. </p>
<p> See how everything goes in the Googleverse? </p>
<p> Segments allow you to identify strengths, weaknesses, and patterns, find reliable sources of revenue, and provide guidance for improving areas where you are not up to par. </p>
<p> There are many custom segments <a href= ready to be imported you can experiment and create your own, or just use standard ready-to-go segments.

The Google Analytics Help Portal provides everything you want to know about segments, but is afraid to ask for it.

They are often ignored, but always beneficial. You can use them to track your most lucrative markets, identify where, when, and how big consumers are coming to you, remarket specific groups at the right time (via AdWords and Audiences), and more.

All you can do to better understand the behavior and the acquisition of your audience is time well spent. Grasp the basics of segments, move on to more advanced techniques and get to know your audience like never before.

This is large decomposed data.

Have you jumped into the segmentation pool of audience? Which filters do you find most insightful? Leave your comments below.

About the author: Aaron Agius, CEO of the World Digital Agency Louder Online is, according to Forbes, one of the world's leading digital marketers . Working with clients such as Salesforce, Coca-Cola, IBM, Intel and dozens of prestigious brands, Aaron is a growth marketer – a fusion of research, content, social and public relations. Find it on Twitter LinkedIn or Louder Online's blog .

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