Earlier this week, Google announced 14 new features to Google Analytics—one of which should be extremely impactful for marketers: audience reports. Yes, you’re finally able to see the age, gender and interests of your visitors. This is a game changer.
Now there is vast potential to draw insights, create tailored messages and reach your best prospects. Your criteria can get so granular as to indicate what content is being accessed by, say, English-speaking 18 to 24 year old females who are interested in cooking. And this kind of info can be segmented by channels or campaigns.
This new level of demographic acumen will allow you to better inform both online and offline marketing efforts by targeting your most best customers, and potentially finding unexpected outliers, as well.
The interests segmentation will probably offer the most audience insights. However, as a designer, I’m personally interested seeing the differences in how the genders and various age groups interact with sites.
The other exciting announcement is the launch of Analytics Academy—free community-based video courses focused on helping people use and understand the new features of GA. As Google has already announced 70 features this year, this level of assistance is truly welcome. You can complete each course at your own pace during a three-week window beginning on October 8, 2013. The first course, Digital Analytics Fundamentals, is now open for registration.
Videos are now available within the Google Analytics interface, offering relevant reports as you’re looking at them. This is huge. Prior to now, instructions were only offered through the boring haze of the Google Analytics Developer portal.
All in all, GA is becoming increasingly more robust, complex and integral. I’m happy to see that Google is offering tools that will help us focus on people and not just hits, allowing us to navigate the ever-changing world of analytics.