Last week, Search Engine Land reported that Google would be blocking keyword data for PPC in Google Analytics. If this sounds a lot like the organic (not provided) changes, that's because it's exactly the same thing, just for PPC.
So, Does Google Analytics Provide Value Anymore?
If you're like me that was the first question you asked yourself when you heard about this update.
The answer is yes.
For years, Google has made it clear that inbound marketing should be about delivering a quality user experience. Serve up content that your visitors want. Make sure your site loads fast. Clean up your navigation. Use semantic URLs. The list goes on.
The bigger message for marketers is this: your website is part of your marketing mix, not a standalone entity. It should be used as a tool to help support your business goals.
In other words, you should put more focus on the things you can do to convert people once they get to your site.
Google Analytics still shows you leads and revenue. It still gives you meaningful insight about how people are engaging with your site. And for these reasons, it's still a hugely valuable tool.
But Not as Valuable As It Used to Be
I should state that I'm still opposed to blocking keyword data in Google Analytics. Without this information, companies and marketers have a more difficult time matching site content to keyword intent. This means user experience is more likely to take a hit. And in this light, you could argue that Google Analytics is less valuable than before.
Fortunately, PPC keyword data is still available to you. All you need to do is log in to your AdWords account and pull the search terms report. That's it!
- Google's decision to block PPC keyword data in Analytics makes it more difficult for companies and marketers to match content to keyword intent.
- Google Analytics still provides value because it enables you to track important metrics such as leads, revenue, and user engagement, which is really what your site should be built around anyway.
- Lastly, you can still access your PPC data in Google AdWords. So, while not as easy to find, you can still get to it and use that insight to continually improve your website.
For more information, make to sure read the Official Google Announcement.
What are your thoughts on this change? How does it impact the way you improve your website's performance? Leave a comment below!