March Right Now Report

The Right Now Report gives you the high-level updates you need without the unnecessary clutter. In the March Right Now Report, we’re diving into how to best use Google Analytics 4, where to focus your energy in tracking metrics and what to do about unwanted bot traffic on your website.

Where are we now with Google Analytics 4? 

Last July, Google officially sunsetted its’ Universal Analytics platform and completed the integration to Google Analytics 4 (GA4). What has this switch meant for users? According to Google, the main purpose of switching to GA4 was to allow for a more automated, privacy-focused and cross-platform approach to user analytics. As the digital landscape and user behavior evolves, GA4 created opportunities to enhance machine learning and AI integration and provide advanced analysis techniques.  

Despite these advantages, we’ve been a part of many conversations where smaller teams (entrepreneurs, nonprofits, small businesses) have noticed some downsides. As you continue to use GA4, it’s important to remember that it does have a learning curve, limited historical data and the potential for limited reporting options. If you feel unequipped to use GA4, please know that you’re not alone. To grow in your use of GA4, you can leverage free resources like Google’s GA4 Training Guide and seek professional help. Additionally, you can focus your efforts on tracking key metrics and not trying to make sense of everything at once. One step at a time is the best way to approach analytics.

You are what you measure

We have created a list of metrics that we believe every institution should watch.

While this data is available in GA4, it can be helpful to pull it out to a spreadsheet where you track other metrics and business goals. This also makes it easier to share directly with your board, leadership team or key stakeholders.

Metrics to track in Google Analytics
  • Users & Sessions: Take a look at the total number of unique visitors (users) and the number of times they interact with your website (sessions). This helps provide clarity on your website’s overall reach.
  • Average Session Duration and Pages Per Session: This demonstrates how engaged users are and where they’re finding the most value on your website.
  • Bounce Rate: This can help you determine if your website has usability problems and if the content is relevant to your audience. A high bounce rate can signify problems that need to be addressed.
  • Conversions & Lead Generation: These can be slightly more complicated to set up in Google Analytics, but taking a look at Goal Completions, Conversion Rate and Lead Generation Metrics can help you know if your website is driving the action you want to see. 
What about finding anomalies in data? 

In February, we’ve been seeing a large increase in bot traffic within GA4. While GA4 automatically excludes known bot traffic to an extent, you might need to do more to keep your data clean. 

This is where monitoring your data can be helpful too, when you monitor your GA4 reports you can scope out anomalies in user behaviors that might indicate bot activity. You can look for these patterns:

  • Suspicious IP addresses: Unusually high traffic from specific IP addresses can indicate bot traffic.
  • Unrealistic session duration: Bots aren’t human after all so their behaviors won’t follow typical patterns. If you see a spike in sessions with unusually short or long durations, this may be a tip that you have unwanted guests. 
  • Unnatural page views: Again, their interactions with your site won’t always be typical so they might view a large number of pages in an unnatural amount of time.

If you notice signs that there are high volumes of unwanted bot activity, you’ll need to filter your data and you might also need to enhance your website’s security measures. GA4 offers data filtering within the “Admin” section that allows you to filter out unwanted traffic. Additional safety measures can include ensuring your website security plugins are blocking any suspicious activity and utilizing captcha verification.

It’s unlikely to eliminate unwelcome visitors, but staying aware and taking steps to prevent it will reduce their impact and give you a clearer picture of your genuine website traffic and interactions.

If you’re struggling with a spike in bot traffic and the complexities of managing it are outside of your comfort zone, we’re happy to help. Reach out to us today and we’ll see where our analytics experts can get you back on the right track.

Other marketing tips and updates: 


New terms of services: It seems like every day our inbox is littered with emails from companies notifying us of their new terms of service policies. With the start of the new year, changes in policies are going into effect and companies are implementing their new terms of service policies to stay in line with changes. While it is tempting to just delete the emails and move on to the next task, we encourage you to take some time to give those agreements a review. Especially with the increase of artificial intelligence tools, it’s helpful to know how your data is being used.

Don’t forget to update your website’s copyright date: Some website providers automatically update the current year on your website’s footer, but not all. Take a few seconds to make this update today. While copyright protection automatically applies when you create website content, making this quick update will make your website feel more up-to-date and cared for. 


What to track beyond Google Analytics: While it can be helpful to know details about your social media profiles such as follower count and post engagement, it can be more numerical to keep track of metrics that directly relate to growing your customer base. To keep track of your efforts and their impact, you can track Customer Lifetime Value (CLV) and Return on Investment (ROI).

  • Customer Lifetime Value: This helps you know how much total revenue a customer generates throughout their relationship with your institution. Knowing long-term value can help you optimize your marketing efforts over time.
  • Return on Investment: ROI takes into account the financial return you’re getting from your investment in various marketing campaigns. Tracking this will enable you to prioritize spending where you’ll get the best bang for your buck. 

Keeping your eye on these metrics helps you make informed decisions about your unique marketing goals and business objectives. 

If you have any questions about these topics or would like support in implementing these trends in your own marketing strategy, we’re here to help. We’re committed to helping you navigate the ever-changing landscape of digital marketing with ease.

We’d love to hear from you! Reach out to us today to explore how working with Right Relations can help you stay ahead of the curve and bring joy back to your marketing efforts.

Verified by MonsterInsights