Google Data Studio is a reporting tool that helps you visualize your data. It’s easy to use, it allows you to transform your data into appealing and informative reports that you can share and customize. You can import data sources such as – Google Ads, Google Search Console, Google Analytics, Facebook Ads, Twitter Ads, Spreadsheets and many more, although most of the integrations are free and some might be paid.
Figure Out Which Data You Need.
It’s pretty simple to get carried away and just create a dashboard on Google Data Studio with every single metric that won’t help you whatsoever. The point is to concentrate your efforts and attention on data that matters and can help you improve the overall SEO results. If you don’t plan to use the data – don’t add it.
Trust me, I’ve made this mistake so many times – creating a beautiful dashboard with good looking charts and KPI that no one cares about. You can do that if you have clients and you want to impress them, but it’s not really helpful in any kind. You have to keep in mind, every chart, every table, and every KPI you create there has to be a specific reason, otherwise, you will get lost in your own data.
If you haven’t done that you can signup – Data Studio, if you already haven’t done that.
My Personal SEO Dashboard
In my specific case, since I’m not a professional blogger and it’s even hard to call me an amateur blogger since I maybe write a blog post every 3 months in the best case scenario. I don’t check my analytics very often, but I still have created a Google Data Studio Dashboard just to check up on my blog every now and then.
I wouldn’t call my dashboard very data-oriented, more like an overview of my current situation in SERP and the overall progress.
This is how my Personal SEO Dashboard looks:
Not saying it’s perfect, but it provides me with all the information I currently need.
My Overall Blog Results
I took time period: 1 Feb – 23 Mar.
As you already know I’m not an active blogger, but I write some posts every now and then when I feel lazy and then the guilt hits you and you feel like you need to do something productive and you try to fool yourself by writing a blog post about something that doesn’t really make any significant changes in your life, but at least it’s something.
As you can see in the table that in March there was some spike in the traffic and, maybe, finally my hard work of blogging is paying off.
P.S I wrote my first blog post in July 2018.
This is my overview: This is very I check my monthly data, and see what changes have happened during the month. As you can see all of the KPI’s have improved quite significantly.
I know that I have an extremely high bounce rate and low page per session, but it doesn’t matter since my blog is oriented on organic traffic. Meaning that people find my blog posts through search, they read the information they needed and they leave. Sure in the future when I’ll have more content to provide I’ll optimize these metrics.
Increase in Traffic, Why?
As you noticed there’s a spike at the traffic and there might be a couple of question how did I accomplish that?
In this specific case I believe there’s more than one reason:
- I did Guest Posting
- I tried out HARO
I don’t want to explain what is Guest Posting, but a couple of opportunities came my way and I got rewarded with a backlink to my blog.
I also tried to read HARO every now and then and when there were queries that I was able to answer and I submitted my answer and also got rewarded with backlinks.
Also, my blog is getting older and more trustworthy, so it’s just natural that my organic traffic is going to start growing. It’s a well-known fact that Google doesn’t like to reward new bloggers with top positions on SERP.
Honestly, I wouldn’t have created this blog post if I wouldn’t receive this spike in the traffic. It gave me a little motivation to work a bit more on my blog on a daily basis.
Where is my traffic coming from?
In this table, I’m monitoring all the channels from which I’m getting traffic. Of course, my biggest channel is organic search – Google, Bing and DuckDuckGo.
In case if anyone is wondering what is under Affiliate Clicks, then a couple of my landing pages are affiliate optimized e.g. if you download Brave Browser from a link that you find on my website a trigger will fire and send information to Google Analytics, which I’ll be able to see in my Data Studio panel. It’s not precise if someone clicks on the link it doesn’t necessarily mean he will download the browser. To be specific you can try to create a postback, but that’s a completely different story.
A surprise for me is that I’m actually receiving quite amount of traffic directly. I might be pessimistic, but I just figured most of the direct traffic is spam. Since every now and then I’m receiving spam emails through my contact form.
I also submit my posts to Reddit, when it’s relevant for some specific subreddits.
Traffic by Country
I also like to know where my traffic is coming from. Since I’m writing all my content in English there’s no surprise that in the top three positions there are the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom.
Honestly, I’m a little bit surprised that I’m not receiving more traffic from Canada and the United Kingdom since I haven’t specifically optimized for the United States, but I guess there’s just enough content that’s optimized specifically for Canada and the United Kingdom and they don’t even show my landing pages in SERP that often. Localized content will always rank better.
Traffic by Device
Mobile first. If you’re getting into SEO, you’ll hear that a lot. I like to check how my blog is doing by devices as well you can get some valid information out of it. E.g. in my specific case the Conversion Rate for Affiliate Clicks are tremendously lower for Mobile than Desktop.
Edited: Added clear CTA buttons to all of my affiliates links, so the Conversion rate should improve hopefully over the next few months.
So it’s extremely important to understand which of your blog posts are bringing in traffic and which landing pages are converting. With this information, you can scale up your blog since you will know what type of content your audience likes and you can try to adjust it, also if you have a landing page that’s purely informative and brings it quite the traffic it’s a good idea to optimize it with Google Adsense.
I only have four landing pages that are optimized with affiliates links – all three Brave landings and eToro review. Ideally, I would like to only launch AdSense on informative landings, but since my traffic is quite low I don’t even bother. It doesn’t make sense to allow other advertisers to advertise when you are actually advertising your own affiliate link.
Trust me, income from an affiliate is significantly higher than from AdSense.
That’s something on my to-do list as soon as I’m going to reach 10 000 unique pageviews per month. Before that, I’m not going to waste my time on that. Quality content and quality traffic first, revenue optimization later.
Search query Average Position
This is not ideal, but at least it’s something. You can’t really get average position on landing pages, because that wouldn’t be very objective. E.g. My Brave vs Google landing page has around 100+ keywords and some of those keywords aren’t relevant e.g brave vs mozilla firefox, brave the movies etc. Taking the average position would just be useless.
Taking average position from search query makes sense and that’s valid information you can use to optimize your blog even further. Play around with your metadata – title and description, add a relevant paragraph to your blog post etc.
When I opened my blank WordPress page I actually thought I’m going to write a tutorial on how to create a Google Data Studio Dashboard, but I ended up by showing my own personal results and a very brief analysis or reflections of my blog. I figured there are already hundreds of tutorials on how to do that, so I took a little different approach and tried to create authentic content for a change by sharing my thoughts and blog results.
Conclusion: It’s actually quite hard to create useful Data Studio Report if you don’t have a goal in mind for your blog or a decent amount of traffic. There’s not much to analyze.
Tip for future self: Don’t create an SEO dashboard, before there’s some decent amount of traffic and you don’t have a plan to optimize your website. Rather spend that time by creating another blog post. That will be much more useful.
You can’t really get valuable insights from 1 000 pageviews per month.
Thanks for reading if you have any question, drop a line below.