The more data that you have about visitors to your website, the easier it is to make decisions about how to grow your traffic. We call this type of data ‘analytics’, and there are a lot of ways to collect it if you’re using WordPress.
Thanks to tools such as Google Analytics, you can acquire amazing amounts of information about your website’s audience. You can see how many visitors you’re receiving, what pages they’re visiting, how long they’re staying on your site, and more.
To make that possible, you need to connect Google Analytics with WordPress, and the best way to do so is with a plugin. In this article, we’ll introduce you to four top Google Analytics plugin options. First, let’s talk a bit more about why you need analytics!
Why You May Want to Use Google Analytics for WordPress
It’s possible to start a website and grow it to be successful without access to analytics. However, you can scale your site much more effectively and efficiently if you do have this information.
There’s a broad range of analytics tools that you can use for your website. What’s more, some of the best options – such as Google Analytics – are free to use and work perfectly with WordPress.
By using an analytics tool, you gain access to massive amounts of data. So much so, in fact, that analytics can be a bit intimidating at first. However, paying attention to critical metrics can give you a good idea of how well your website is doing. Some examples include:
- Visits over time. Ideally, you want to see an upward trend when it comes to visits over time. That tells you that your site is attracting attention and that your efforts to drive traffic to your pages are working. If you see dips, you change course to improve your strategy.
- Where visitors are coming from. Google Analytics can tell you how visitors are finding your site. In the case of search engines, you may also be able to see what keywords are driving traffic to your content.
- How long users spend on your website. This simple metric can help you monitor visitor engagement. If time on site drops after an update, then you know that visitors might not like the changes that you made.
Those are just three examples of metrics that you can monitor using Google Analytics. If you’re not using it yet, you can create an account for free right now:
Once you have an account, Google Analytics will ask you to connect your website so it can start collecting data from it. To do so, you need to add a snippet of code to your site’s header.
This process is not necessarily complicated, but if you aren’t used to dealing with code or editing WordPress files, it can be delicate. A much simpler approach is to use a plugin that enables you to connect Google Analytics with WordPress without touching any code.
How to Add Google Analytics to WordPress (4 Best Plugins)
There are several plugins that you can use to add Google Analytics to WordPress without editing any code. In this section, we’ll introduce you to four of the top options and talk about what makes each of them unique.
MonsterInsights enables you to connect Google Analytics with WordPress in only a few clicks. Once your account is connected, you’ll get access to a new section in your WordPress dashboard that includes data about traffic, your top keywords, where visitors are coming from, and much more.
The whole idea behind this plugin is to enable you to view key Google Analytics metrics without having to leave WordPress. MonsterInsights also works with WooCommerce, enabling you to track events such as conversions, revenue, and more.
Finally, MonsterInsights includes features that enable you to protect users’ privacy, such as anonymizing IP addresses, hiding demographics reports, and more.
As far as Google Analytics WordPress plugins go, MonsterInsights is perhaps the most comprehensive option that you can use. However, if you’re not going to take advantage of all the data that it provides and want something more ‘lightweight’, it might not be the best option for you.
Site Kit bills itself as the official Google plugin for WordPress. Using this tool, you can connect multiple Google services with your website all from your dashboard and with only a few clicks. That includes Google Analytics, of course, but also the following services:
If you use multiple Google services for your WordPress website, then this plugin can make your life a lot easier. Not only does it handle integration, but you can also pull information from those services to your dashboard.
For example, using Site Kit, you can monitor analytics from WordPress and also run speed tests, thanks to PageSpeed Insights integration. On the other hand, if you only want to connect Google Analytics to your website, this plugin can be overkill.
This plugin also enables you to integrate Google tags and track ad performance, and it includes enhanced user privacy settings (just as MonsterInsights does). Plus, you can filter analytics depending on user roles so that everyone involved in maintaining your site only has access to the information they need to do their jobs.
What sets Beehive Analytics apart from other plugins is its User Interface (UI) and how easy it is to set up. In our experience, this is the Google Analytics plugin to use if you value tools that are easy to configure.
If you’re happy visiting Google Analytics to check your website’s metrics, this is the plugin for you. GA Google Analytics will help you connect the service to your WordPress website and that’s basically it.
This plugin also enables you to anonymize user data and it lets your visitors opt out of tracking if they want to. Aside from that, you don’t get access to graphs or charts within the WordPress dashboard, but that’s not necessarily a bad thing, especially if you prefer a streamlined back end and don’t want to clutter up your admin area.
If you want to take a deep dive into your website’s numbers, then it’s best that you become acquainted with the Google Analytics platform and how to navigate it. This will enable you to quickly track down the information that is most pertinent to you so that you can make informed decisions about how to improve and grow your site.
Google Analytics is perhaps the best free analytics tool that you can use for WordPress websites. It can provide you with massive amounts of data and all you have to do is connect your account with your website.
The easiest way to do that is by using a Google Analytics WordPress plugin, such as:
- MonsterInsights: The most comprehensive plugin, which enables you to track dozens of data points within your dashboard, including e-commerce events.
- Site Kit by Google: This plugin enables you to connect multiple Google services with WordPress, including Analytics, Search Console, and PageSpeed Insights.
- Beehive Analytics: One of the most user-friendly plugins, this tool makes it easy to add Google Analytics to WordPress even if you’re a beginner.
- GA Google Analytics: This no-frills plugin lets you add Google Analytics to WordPress but it doesn’t clutter the back end with in-dashboard metrics.
Do you have any questions about which Google Analytics plugin to use? Let’s talk about them in the comments section below!