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Google Analytics and Mobile Experience

The rise of mobile in our everyday lives has been described as "meteoric." I think that's an understatement.

An astounding number of mobile users have emerged over the last half decade, with numbers growing over 100 million smartphone users in the US alone as of early last year. This growth is astounding, considering the smartphone industry was almost nonexistent until the first iPhone came out in June of 2007.

This amazing growth in mobile use has changed the way companies approach their mobile presence. Once an afterthought, designers will often start by considering how the mobile site will function and expand to the full version of the site. Responsive web design has made mobile sites easier to manage and more accessible on any number of devices. The mobile web is becoming a market of its own, with different needs, wants, and motivations for each visitor.

So how can you make mobile work for your brand? There are a couple things to consider when planning on building a mobile site or campaign.

Define Your Mobile "Persona"

Understanding and defining your visitor personas is an essential part of building a great web presence. The same goes for mobile. First, start by thinking about who your mobile users are. How do they differ from the visitors on your full-browser site?

Next, create your "mobile visitor persona." The exercise of developing personas will help you begin to visualize and plan for each type of visitor. Give your persona a name, occupation and interests. Outline their goals and desires, both in the context of your site and in broader terms. Where do they work? Do they have a family? What do they do for fun?

Understand What Your Mobile Users Really Need

One of the most important questions your persona can help answer is, Why does this person interact with your site via a mobile experience? Is your persona a traveler away from their computer, a student used to doing everything on their smartphone, or a shopper who comes across your product in-store? Answering these questions can help you prioritize your site's assets for the mobile experience.

How Google Analytics Can Help

You need to make the most out of every interaction with your site. How do you determine which pages are priorities for mobile users? A good place to start is Google Analytic's Mobile Traffic. This allows you to view your most-visited pages by mobile users.

Click "Advanced Segments" at the top left of your current report
Under "Default Segments," scroll to "Mobile Traffic" and check the box
Click "Apply"
On the left menu, click "Content"
Next, click the "Site Content" drop down
Click "All Pages" 

You should now see a report of the highest visits pages on your site by visitors using mobile devices. This is often a good indication of what your content your mobile users are looking for.

Another great way to size up your mobile traffic is by device. You can see the breakdown of device type by following these directions:

Under “Standard Reports” click the “Audience” menu item
Next, click the “Mobile” drop down and select “Devices”

You should now see a breakdown of all different device types used to access your site. To narrow it down further, you can select the “Operating System” option as your “Primary Dimension.” This report will tell you what mobile OS users are using to visit your site.

Responding to the idea of a responsive web design? Mulling over a new mobile strategy? Email us with the subject line, Let's go mobile! to see how a responsive website, a mobile site, or a mobile app could change the way your customers interact with your brand.