Benchmarking in Google Analytics

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For those long-time Google Analytics users out there you might remember the old Benchmarking reports that allowed you to compare things like bounce rate and other metrics against other similar websites. Well, they disappeared a while ago, but now benchmarking is back! You can compare your own performance against different industry verticals and against different traffic volumes. This allows you to build up a picture to understand your performance in relation to other Google Analytics accounts.

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You can switch between different industry verticals to see how you compare:

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You can define a default industry vertical to save you a bit of time when accessing the report. The default can be set within the admin section of Google Analytics. Just navigate to ‘Admin’ and select ‘Property Settings’. You will notice you can choose your industry category.

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The reports use a heat-map to highlight areas where you are performing above (or below) average. Here we can see the Channels report highlighting the default marketing channels and how the website compares against the Benchmark.

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Benchmarking can be difficult to use as an actionable report. If you're performing way better than your competitors does that mean you stop trying as hard? Or if you are nowhere near as good do you give up?

Apart from marketing channels, the Benchmark reports also include performance based on country:

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And against the devices people are using to access your site:

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And in case you are wondering your can choose not to have your own data shared with Google to be included in the Benchmark reports. Simply navigate to ‘Admin’ and select ‘Account Settings’. If you deselect ‘Anonymously with Google and others’, then your data will not contribute to the reports. However, you don’t need to worry because it is anonymous and there is a massive number of other websites that are also sharing data, so nobody can see your individual website data.

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Happy Benchmarking!