How to Measure Your Social Media Traffic Using Google Analytics

Dhwani Gandhi
Jan 18, 2013 07:41 IST
New Update
How to Measure Your Social Media Traffic Using Google Analytics

Do you have a grip on the traffic on your website received from social media? Measuring your social media impact can be overwhelming.

A tried-and-true favourite social media measurement tool for any website is Google Analytics. Google Analytics can track the impact of social media traffic on your site, going beyond clicks, retweets and other personal metrics.

Here’s how to measure your social media traffic using Google Analytics.

1. Identify the source of your traffic:

You first need to set up an advanced segment in Google Analytics to know your social media traffic.

To add social media traffic sources to the segment, log into your Google analytics account, go to advance settings, + New Custom Segment, then add your social media traffic sources to the segment. Use one general segment to capture all of your social media traffic at once.

Save this segment and move towards Audience – Demographics – Location and it will show you from what part of the country or your local area your social media traffic is coming from.

You can use this information to achieve your business targets. It helps you to target appropriate areas for Facebook ads, or decide suitable areas for a meet up, etc.

2. Determine traffic coming from mobile devices:

We all know that the use of mobile phones to access social media sites have increased immensely. So it is also important to know the amount of traffic coming from mobile phones.

With the advanced segment selected, simply head to Standard Reporting – Audience – Mobile – Overview. It will give you the number of people who frequent your site via their mobile devices and even detail the type of device they are using.

This information will be useful when examining the percentage of your overall traffic that is generated from mobiles. If it is a significant number, you can check how your content comes up on a mobile site. You can check whether the fonts and images on the site are readable,whether the videos are working and other details.

3. Social Overview:

This section allows you to view and compare the most important social media data for your website over the past 30 days, including information such as the overall number of visits per month, visits from social media referrals, overall conversions, and social media-assisted conversions.

Beneath that, you can click “Social Network” to see the top social networks sending traffic to your website, or select “Shared URL” to see the top pages shared on social networks, or view “Social Sources” to see which plugins on your websites were used.

4. Social Sources:

The first two graphs under Social Sources will help you to compare the overall traffic to traffic generated from social referrals.

Below that, you will see the individual social networks that refer your website traffic along with the number of page views, the average visit duration, and pages per visit.

You can click on each social network to see which pages on your website were shared on these networks and how many visits the pages received from those shares.

The ‘Social Pages’ section is similar to Social Sources, except that the list displays the top pages on your website, according to how many times they were shared on social media networks. Here too, you can click on each of these pages to see which social networks received the most traffic, specific to each page.

5. Social conversions:

In order to understand social conversions, you have to set up goals in Google Analytics. Goals are a simple way to tell Google Analytics how to track visitor actions, so that if a visitor performs a specific action, such as landing on a certain URL on the site, a goal has been completed.

The Social Conversions section shows the number of conversions or goal completions made by visitors from social media networks.

Click here to learn more about setting up goals in Google Analytics.

6. Social Plug-ins:

This section shows you how many times people have engaged with social buttons on your website, as well as the most popular articles shared via these social buttons. Social plug-ins by default shows you the Google+ button activity in Google Analytics.

If you want to see more detailed data of the visitors who click other buttons such as the Twitter Retweet or Facebook 'Like' button, then you can add an additional tracking code to your website.

Click here to learn more about how to integrate a tracking code for other social networks in Google Analytics.

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