Having insight into who visits your website can be invaluable when it comes to further optimization or further growth of your website / product. But do you currently reach the desired target group?
It starts with gaining insight into who visits your website. This can be done in reasonably different ways (Google Analytics, server logs etc.), but the most transparent and transparent way to do this for a website is usually with the help of Google Analytics.
Before you can use Google Analytics you have to do two things;
- Create a Google account
- Provide all your pages with the Google Analytics tracking code
Once you’ve done that, you can use Google Analytics to see how many visitors there were over a certain period of time, how long a visit lasted, how someone came in, where someone was for the last time and a lot more.
But 1 thing is perhaps even more important for your website with a view to reaching the right target group. Do the visitors fall into the target group you expect on the website?
A demography is a study of the size, structure and distribution. With the help of a demography you get a clear picture of target groups with aspects such as age and gender.
For a detailed explanation of the demography as you can see on Google Analytics, I refer you to; https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/2799357?hl=en#dimensions
The demography option in Google uses a certain form of user-tracking. This option therefore also stands out as standard, because it has to do with the privacy of the end user. So it is a concrete opt-in.
I would advise you to activate it as it can provide you with insight into who visits your website, on which you can base or connect with the target group you have in mind.
Switch on Demography
You can activate this in Google Analytics by accepting opt-in under the Target group > Demographics option. Note that it will take a while before Google can display data in it.
It is then mandatory to inform users of this in any disclaimer privacy conditions or the like.
More personal than demography – The target group
A demography is of course one thing, but if you want more information than just the information that demography can give you, then you are actually in an area where you want to know more about the content than the people that Google wants to share with you, with the privacy of the end users.
That is also something to take into account immediately; privacy is something that can be very diverse per person. What is no problem for 1 person can be labeled as undesirable for someone else.
Suppose you really want more information about the visitors of your website outside the demographics than I would recommend to give the visitors the possibility to create an account. In this way you give the user a free choice in which they can determine whether they want to share certain information with you. You are of course free to ask for the most important information when registering.
Please note that with GDPR you may only request data that is necessary for the purpose. Suppose someone does an order with you then their name and address often are normal but for example the gender is not necessary for the purpose. If you ask this fact anyway, you will have to indicate why; with what purpose.
At that moment you can also choose to do something for your users in the area of user-tracking. This gives you insight into the habits they have and how they deal with your medium. Again it is mandatory to indicate this to your visitors by means of a disclaimer, privacy conditions or the like.
What I would not advise anyway
There are parties on the web that do user-shaping and make this available to third parties. A practice that I do not recommend because this usually happens without explicit permission from the persons in question.
The importance of a knowing your visitors
Having insight is fine, but why is it so important?
Imagine you have designed a website with a view to a specific target group, but it turns out that a totally different target group uses your website or is looking for your services. Then it may mean that you have to make other choices in the further development of your website that are more in line with this target group.
The more you can stimulate the actual target group that visits your website, the better your website (and conversion rate) can perform.
What steps are next?
You always need to evaluate whether you receive the target group with your website that you have come up with when designing and decorating. If you find that it changes you can do two things;
- Adjust / adjust so that you reach the desired target group
- See how you can best serve the target audience
You should assess which action is best for each situation as this may differ in terms of wishes and possibilities.
With all the projects that I take on, together with the client and a test group I carefully check that we have a clear picture of the desired target group. By tuning that in terms of design and layout, we can ensure that we can manage as much as possible.
In addition, I check periodically whether this still fits well through the demography that we can actually measure in Google Analytics.
If I can help you in any way with checking if you reach the desired target group, let me know without any obligation.