When starting out as a Virtual Assistant the whole journey can feel a little over-whelming. You know the importance of having the right equipment, creating a decent web presence, networking, getting organised and becoming familiar with the latest processes, technology and software. However because there is so much to think about, learn and implement, often important areas can be overlooked and undervalued.
Google Analytics is one of those areas. Yes you’ve heard of it and know what it’s all about, but what with building your business and finding clients it’s kind of taken a back seat. Don’t worry we’ve all been there!
And in fact, even if your business is a little more established and you’ve managed to fill your schedule, you should still use Google Analytics – what if one of those clients stops using your services and you need to replace them?
You need to know that your website is attracting the right type of prospects and is able to convert them.
So here are five reasons to use Google Analytics for your VA business.
1. Ensure you’re using the right keywords.
It’s no use creating a wonderful website if you don’t get the right type of clients finding it. One way to do this is by placing keywords naturally within your website content (if you’re not sure what keywords you should be using then Google’s Keyword Planner tool is worth checking out).
Take a look at the organic traffic your website is getting. From this you’ll be able to see the phrases people are using to find your website. The next thing to check is how long they stayed on your website when using that search term. This will help determine if those keywords are beneficial to your business i.e. if that visitor stayed on your website for a few minutes or more and had a good look around, then the chances are your keywords are spot on, or close to it. However, if they navigated away almost immediately, then it’s likely that your website wasn’t what they were looking for. So you may want to re-visit the keywords placed within your website content.
When starting out as a VA this process can take some trial and error. In fact, you may find that over the course of the first year you’ll tweak your website content and the keywords a few times – once you’ve gained a better idea of what works and what doesn’t.
2. Ensure your website content is engaging.
Following on from checking the keywords and phrases you’re using are targeting the right type of client, it’s time to review how effective your content is.
What are your website visitors doing once they’ve landed on your website? How long are they staying?
If they’re not hanging around for very long, it could just be that you’re not selling yourself and your services in an engaging manner. This is an easy fix, but without using Google Analytics you may never have known.
3. Find out where your traffic is primarily located.
This is an interesting insight to find out if your keywords and website content is targeting the right demographic in terms of their location.
Let’s say you’re offering social media services and have plenty of traffic arriving on your site who want a VA offering that specialism, but when they realise you’re UK based rather than US based (or vice versa) they navigate away since they’re actually looking for someone within the same country, perhaps for time zone or grammar reasons. If that’s the case, you may need to review your keywords again to ensure that potential clients within your country are also using those keywords to find a VA with that specialism. If they’re not, you should find out what keywords they are using and update your website content so you have a better chance of acquiring clients who do want to work with you.
Another benefit of knowing where your traffic is located is if you decide at some point in the future to do some targeted advertising. It allows you to find out where the majority of your traffic is coming from (and converting) so that you can then select your online ad campaign to focus on that country or region.
4. Find out if your call to action (CTA) is working.
Google Analytics enables you to see where your traffic comes from, then where they go once they land on your website, and finally what they do before navigating away. If they are signing up to your mailing list, sending you an enquiry, downloading your free ebook (or whatever your specific CTA is) then your website content is doing its job.
If, on the other hand, your target market is landing on your website but their behaviour is erratic and they’re not doing what you ultimately want them to do, then perhaps your CTA and internal webpage navigation isn’t effective enough.
Spend some time taking a look at your traffic and the way they navigate through your website to highlight the pages that need attention, then update those pages so they become more effective.
5. Set Goals.
The final reason to use Google Analytics is the ‘Goals’ feature. This allows you to set relevant business goals and track how successful they are.
So depending on your CTA, you could set up a goal to monitor how successful it is. For example, your main CTA could be to get your website visitors to download your free ebook that explains the benefits of using a Virtual Assistant. Therefore you would set the goal type as a ‘URL destination’ (the destination of your download / sign up link) and monitor the amount of times your website visitors click on the link.
If you’re not seeing conversion rates as you expected, you should look at tweaking your CTA to create a more powerful message to increase the click-through rate.
Setting goals will help give you a clearer picture of how effective all the above points are in building your VA business and attracting the right type of clients.