Google Adds Enhanced Demographic Data To Analytics Tool

A recent and very welcome update to Google Analytics now gives marketers more information about their website visitors, allowing for detailed data analysis and greater segmentation than before.

The new demographics and interests reports use the DoubleClick tracking cookie to gather and provide data about a website visitor, including their gender and age, as well as affinity categories and interests. Google has made the data available in custom reports, allowing marketers to seriously evaluate their website visitor?s behavior and measure the effectiveness of their content for specific demographics.

Enabling Demographics and Interests Reports

Before you enable the new demographics and interests reports, you?ll need to modify your website?s tracking code to support display advertising and update your privacy policy so your visitors know what data is being collected. Google makes this easy, and has detailed instructions available on their support pages.

After you have updated your tracking code and privacy policy, you will still need to enable the report in Google Analytics. Additional steps are also necessary if you use the Google Tag Manager.

How to Use the New Demographic and Interests Reports

Before you delve deeply into your new data, remember that not all your website visitors will be tracked and data is only available for those who have the DoubleClick tracking cookie enabled. Your reports will indicate what percentage of your total visits are represented.

You can apply any specific demographic to determine the type of visitors that are coming to your website. You can apply the demographic criteria to your goal completions or e-commerce reports to determine which groups have the most value and conversions.

The demographics and interests reports will also indicate whether some groups convert better than others, and whether you are attracting the right audience to your website. This data can be incredibly valuable when determining your content marketing strategy and deciding which data to produce and where to share it.

Create and share content that will attract audiences that have higher conversions, and use the data to determine if you might be missing the mark with your target market. Tailor your content to appeal to these visitors, and you should see an increase in traffic and conversions.

What?s Included in the Demographic and Interests Reports

The demographic report provides basic demographic data about your site visitors including their age and gender. Interest reports delve into who your visitors are. Affinity categories identify visitors on a broad scale, such as TV lovers or travel buffs. Affinity categories are broad, but can be used to determine which content your visitors would like to see based on their interests.

The interest categories labeled ?other? categorizes visitors based on specific content they consume and how often they consume that content. This is a more detailed segmentation option that offers additional insight of your page visitors.

Using Google?s Demographic Reports to Target Ads

The demographics and interests reports also provide valuable data about your visits that can be used to create more effective, targeted ads using Google.

Using the data in the reports, you can make educated adjustments to your ad spending and focus more on the audiences that are converting on your website. This means your ad spending will be more efficient and your ads will be more effective.

Benefits of Using Interests and Demographics Information

The addition of specific demographic and interest data in Google Analytics is a welcome addition for marketers who now have much more information on which to base their content marketing efforts. The change also helps encourage the shift from keyword SEO-based marketing to more effective content marketing.

While data will not be available for all your visitors, there should be a large enough sample from which you can make educated decisions regarding your overall marketing strategy. You now have more data to leverage when evaluating the success of your marketing efforts, and will be able to determine what works and what doesn?t for your audiences.