Google Annotations is one of the most underappreciated Google tools you can utilize to optimize your website. To add dates to your Google Analytics statements, you can use annotations, which are small post-it notes.
You can use a Google Annotation as a visual aid to determine whether certain circumstances, such as adjustments to the Google algorithm, technical difficulties with your website, and significant changes to its design, have had a favourable or unfavourable impact on the traffic to your site.
Digital marketing firms, as well as individual website owners, profit from this.
If you are tracking data on-site, it’s unlikely that you will do so daily unless your site or your client’s site is quite extensive. The performance of a site may suffer if significant traffic-related changes are missed.
How would you know, for instance, if you want to revamp a page that caused a traffic decline? These crucial dates might escape your memory if you don’t record them somewhere.
Here’s the answer: Record the redesign’s launch date in a Google Annotation to keep track of subsequent modifications. As a result, you can evaluate the success of the redesign.
In any other case, Google won’t record this data for you. Google can do many specialities, but it cannot read your mind to ascertain the dates for significant developments.
Google Annotations become even more crucial if you own a digital agency. Tracking changes on a single site is very simple, but managing many sites with numerous team members performing tasks is challenging. Another excellent way for clients to see your work is through annotations.
Consider the scenario where you visit a client’s Google Analytics and observe a sharp decline in traffic to one of their top-performing pages. How is this even possible?
With Google Annotations, you can quickly pinpoint the issue’s root cause.
Similar to how you can detect trends in the performance of your client’s sites after using annotations for a few months. What has functioned and what has not can be analysed.
Here’s how you can add annotations on Google Analytics:
- Look for the tiny tab below the timeline in Google Analytics to add an annotation.
- Select “+ Create new annotation.”
- Pick the annotation’s date.
- Publish your note.
- Choose the annotation’s visibility. For instance, you can only make private annotations if you only have “Read and Analyse” permission.
- Press “Save.”
To change a current annotation:
- Click the little arrow in the grey bar below the primary data timeline.
- To update an annotation, click on it.
- Put your modifications in (either text or date).
- Click “Save”
Once the annotation is saved, a tiny icon will appear on the timeline to indicate that a note has been added to the specified date.
When To Use Annotations?
Use annotations to highlight any significant dates in your report. Create annotations for any modifications that might impact your data since they provide context. An annotation must be added for everything that affects the amount of traffic. These include items like:
- Your email marketing campaigns
- The advertising campaigns you’ve run
- Any offline marketing campaigns you run to reach a broad audience.
- Any substantial website modifications, such as the introduction of a newly designed website or the addition of a large amount of fresh content
- Any digital marketing effort
- Annual celebrations and holidays
- Issues with servers and websites
Anyone with a Google Analytics account can use annotations to add shared or personal notes to the over-time graph. You may capture your group’s tribal intelligence, the most valuable and easily lost resource, by applying the principle of bringing the intellectual ability to data. One cannot overstate the value of comments in your data. Deep insights will be available to you, aiding you in the long run. Here are the top three advantages of annotating your data analytics:
By accelerating your ability to solve problems and saving you time, annotations assist you in answering the most crucial questions and delivering essential business knowledge.
Annotations make the data simpler to understand
You may set up Google Analytics to send personalized Intelligence Alerts by email (or by SMS to United States phone numbers) in addition to your annotations whenever a metric threshold is hit for a specified time frame.
For instance, the following Intelligence Alert will produce an email if traffic to your product page increases by more than 10% compared to the previous week after you showcase a product on your home page.
A Few Suggestions for Annotating Effectively
1. Be specific
Nothing is more annoying than a missing piece of the puzzle in a complex puzzle.
If your notes are challenging to grasp, writing them in the first place would be a waste of effort.
Instead, despite the limited number of characters you have (160), use them as effectively as possible to make your argument.
2. Consider who might read it in the future
You won’t be the only one reading these notes in the circumstances of shared annotations. They will be read by your analysts, marketing staff, etc., who may use them for analysis and insights. For instance, it’s likely that if you use personal abbreviations, they’ll be taken in a different sense than you intended. So, make sure someone reading your notes without the context can understand them.
3. Keep track of both online and offline marketing campaigns
Numerous factors, as already said, might influence your traffic, and you need to be aware of them. Online campaigns undoubtedly will. If 10% of the subscribers in an email blast you send out to 1000 subscribers click through, that translates into 100 additional visits, so when you review your analytics a month later, you’ll want to know what triggered that. What about a television commercial, though? A radio commercial? You distributed flyers at the bus stop, right? That might also boost traffic, and you want to know which offline marketing efforts were most effective for you as much as possible.