Have you ever wondered if there is a way to know what lifestyle and purchase interests do your web visitors have without making surveys? Although surveys can be great tool to collect visitors information, it could be a little interruptive and time-consuming.
As digital marketers, our biggest dream is being able to know every possible aspect of our current/potential customers and, to accomplish that, we do very often a little guesswork. To avoid this, we can use Google Analytics Interest Reports, which can provide better insights about visitor’s lifestyle and purchase interests without disturbing upcoming visitors.
Let’s see how it works.
So, what is shown on the Interest Reports?
On the left menu, if you click in Audience and then Interests, there will be shown the following four reports:
- Overview: Displays a top 10 summary of Affinity Categories, Market Segments and Other Categories Reports.As shown on the image above, these 3 reports constitute your user’s interests from where you will see key metrics based on user’s acquisition, behavior and conversions when you access them. Metrics such as: Sessions, % of New sessions, Page/Sessions, Goal Conversion Rate and E-commerce conversion rate, just to name a few. That’s why, it’s important to review them in order to understand interest reports.
- Affinity Categories: identifies users in terms of lifestyle; such as, Technophiles, New Junkies & Avid Readers, TV lovers, etc.This report can be helpful for publishers to target their content toward the main interests of audiences that already come to their website, or maybe, on redesigning landing pages for categories that convert the most but happens to have high bounce rates.
- Market Segments: identifies users in terms of their interest to purchase a related set of products; for example: Consumer Electronics/Mobile Phone or Autos & Vehicles/Motor Vehicles. A useful report to find potential markets to target.
- Other Categories: provides the most specific, granular view of your users. For example, while Affinity Categories includes the category Foodies, Other Categories includes the category “Food & Drink/Cooking & Recipes.If you’re an advertiser, this report can help you effectively target ads on the Google Display Network based on specific interests.
Also, you can create specific segments with filters based on the dimensions (like interest categories) and metrics you wish. Go ahead and see where these visitors are coming from, are they coming from a particular source or medium? E.g. if your key visitors are coming from Facebook, then you should become more active on Facebook. Once you have understood where these visitors are coming from, look at your site content to understand what pages they frequent and which pages they bounce. Then, make the necessary adjustments to improve your site content and user experience design.
Remember, in order to work on these reports, you must enable the view either in the Admin or Reporting tab.
To enable the reports from the Admin Tab:
- Select the Admin tab.
- Navigate to the account property where you want to use Interests data.
- In the PROPERTY column, click Property Settings.
- Under Advertising Features, set Enable Demographics and Interests Reports to ON.
- Click Save.
To enable the reports from Reporting Tab:
- Click theReporting tab.
- Open theAudience > Demographics > Overview
- ClickEnable (above the introductory text).
Then, within the next 24 hours of enabling, you should see data on this reports.So, where does google get this data?The data comes from the third-party DoubleClick cookie for web traffic and from anonymous identifiers for mobile apps. Google basically get data about user’s search history and their google + or social media profile. As you browse the Internet you’ll frequently be viewing sites that are part of the Google partner network and will classify you in a certain category based upon the type of sites you frequently visit.
And how accurate is this data in Google Analytics?
It is important to mention that interest report data is not available for every single user; when the DoubleClick cookie or anonymous identifier is not present, or no activity profile is included, Google Analytics cannot collect data. So the reports are collected for a percentage of your visitors (as shown in the overview report on the image below; which only use 28,74% of all sessions). Besides, this also can be due to some country specific policies, as well as, some data may be removed when thresholds are applied to prevent inferring the identity of an individual user, (we can note this in the yellow alert on the image below), this usually happen when you have few data in your interest reports, so is recommended to set a larger data range to avoid it.
All thing considered, is up to your imagination making great data-driven improvements to your website. Though Google Analytics may have some restrictions making all data available, it is still a great tool to get further insights about your visitor’s lifestyle and purchase interests, so you can avoid the guesswork and rely on getting better insights to improve your digital marketing efforts.