[dropcap5]G[/dropcap5]oogle Analytics is a powerful tool that webmasters can use to track traffic and other metrics in relation to their websites. Offered for free by Google, you can utilize Analytics to not only see what your website is doing well, but figure out how to improve it over time. Unless you can track what is going on with your site, you really have no way of knowing what needs to be improved.

One way to figure out what your site is doing is to use goals through the Analytics program. Goals can be set up from within Google Analytics and they can provide you with valuable information as a webmaster. These goals can help you figure out when a desired action is taken by a website visitor. A desired action could be navigating to a specific page, downloading a report or staying on the site for a certain amount of time. If you’re interested in setting up goals, there are a few steps that you’ll need to take.

[h3]Setting Up Analytics[/h3]
If you are interested in using goals through Google Analytics, you will need to first set up the program. To do this, you need a Google ID and to sign up for Google Analytics. Once you sign up for Google Analytics, you will be given a piece of tracking code that is specific to your site.

At that point, you will need to install the code on each page of your site that you want to track. You will need to use the software or program that you use to edit and update your site or blog and then copy and paste the code into each page. Once the code is installed on each page, it will start keeping track of visitors to your site and reporting the information.

[h3]Add a Goal[/h3]

Before you can start using goals to track actions on your website, you will need to add a goal to Google Analytics. To begin this process, click the gear in the top right corner of the page in Analytics. At that point, you may need to select the site that you want to use a goal for, if you have multiple sites using your web analytics account. Then click the “Goals” tab. From this tab, you will need to click the +Goal button to add a new goal. You will then be able to choose what type of goal that you want to add.

[h3]Name the Goal[/h3]
Once you choose what type of goal you want to add, you will be able to enter a name for the goal. Name the goal something that applies to the type of goal that you want to set up. Once you name the goal and choose what type of goal you want to set up, it is ready to start tracking.

[h3]Setting the Condition[/h3]
During the process of setting up your goal and choosing what type of goal you want, you’ll also need to provide some more specifics. In this stage of the process, you will need to name some specific conditions for which the goal will be triggered. For example, if you are using a “Pages/Visit” goal, you will need to set the number of pages that will trigger the goal. If you are using a goal such as “Time on Site” you will need to specify the amount of time that you want visitors to be on your site on average. This part of the process is essential if you want to have specific goals that you can track later on.

Tracking the Goals

After you set up a goals and allow some time for visitors to visit your site, you then have the option of tracking the goals. This part of the process allows you to see how your site is performing and whether it is meeting the objectives that you set up.

When you look in Google Analytics, you’ll notice a “Conversions” section over on the left side of the page. Click on this section and then you will see the various goals that you have defined. You can then click on each individual goal to see how the site is performing. By using this information, you can then make the necessary adjustments to your site to improve performance.