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Crazy Analytics Trick - Lower the Noise Floor

WRITTEN by: Bill Sterzenbach |
categories: Research and Strategy , SEO

Jan 2013


The problem most people have when reviewing their analytics data is that they are sifting through an enormous amount of "bad data". Essentially, on many sites, about half of the visits LEAVE after their first page.

What can you learn about these visitors from Analytics?

  • Where did they come from
  • What keyword (if applicable) did they come from
  • What page did they land on
  • A few miscellaneous other tidbits

Of course this data is critical to know, but once known, stop cluttering your data with abandoning visitor information.

The point of course, is that once we know what there is to know about bounced visitors, there is nothing more to be gained by leaving these visits in our analytics data as we explore more deeply. This is because of the fact that the visitor LEFT after viewing the first page, so there IS no more data to be gathered, but by leaving this data in our reports, it reduces all of our other numbers and can conceal some fascinating information from us.

What to Do?

The solution is simple. For each report, grab the data you need regarding bounced visits, then filter them out. This can be done easiest by clicking the button labeled "Advanced Segments" and selecting the check box on the left next to "non-bounce visits". You'll notice now that keywords that were not in the top 10 for visit quality will begin to appear. In short, you're now looking at the data that really matters. You're looking at the data for the visitors that wanted to stay.

Just Give it a Try

Continue running your reports as you have, but at the end of your activity, filter out the bounced visits and have a look around. Do this a few times and you'll start to notice that you will find truly surprising data hiding in there waiting for you.

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