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Last updated on 4/6/22

Learn the fundamentals of Google Analytics


Google Analytics is a website analytics service created by Google. It is the world's most widely-used website analytics service. A report on the world's top one hundred thousand websites shows that almost 75% of them are using this service.  

Google Analytics is free to use, which is great news for website and product owners around the world. It means that once this course teaches you how to use it, you'll be ready to take advantage of an extremely powerful product that has a price tag of zero.

How Google Analytics works

In order to get started with Google Analytics, you must:

  1. Create a google analytics account.

  2. Download a special tracking code that will be unique to your website or app.

  3. Embed this tracking code (which is a small piece of JavaScript code) into each page of your website.

When someone visits one of the pages on your site that has a tracking code, then the JavaScript automatically sends information to Google's servers.

You can then log in to the Google Analytics dashboard which will offer you a summary of this information. For example, you will be able to see:

  • Which countries your visitors are in.

  • How many pages they viewed.

  • Which mobile devices they used.

  • And much more...

Metrics and dimensions

In this context, metrics are the raw statistics that Google Analytics servers collect on your behalf and display on the analytics dashboard. For example, the total number of users this month will be clearly displayed.

Dimensions are the options available to you for filtering these metrics into segments based on certain attributes. For example, you could look at the total number of users broken down by age, location or mobile device.

In the example above, the total number of users is the metric, while age, location, and mobile device are dimensions that you can use to break down or segment this metric. In this way, you may discover that 90% of your visitors are using Android devices or are aged 45-55. This is information that you can use to drive effective decision-making.

Metrics (total visitors) and Dimension (age)
Metrics (total visitors) and dimension (age)

The huge number of dimensions that Google Analytics provides can be used to understand the demographics of your visitors. In particular, it is easy to segment visitors by:

  • Age

  • Sex

  • Country

  • City

  • Language 

  • Frequency

  • Mobile device

  • Operating system

  • Browser

Audience reports in GA reveal visitor demographics
Audience reports in GA reveal visitor demographics.

The ABC model of Google Analytics

The ABC model of Google Analytics illustrates that Google Analytics can help you understand:

  1. Acquisition - What brought users to your site or app?

  2. Behavior - What did users actually do after landing on your site or app?

  3. Conversion - Did users actually do what you hoped they would do?

The ABC Model of Google Analytics
The ABC model of Google Analytics

In the next chapters, we will see how you can use Google Analytics to explore the acquisition, behavior, and conversion of your visitors!


  • Google Analytics is the world's most widely-used website analytics service.

  • The ABC model shows you how to use Google Analytics to understand:

    • How you acquire visitors.

    • What their behavior looks like.

    • Which conversion rates you see for desired actions.

  • Google Analytics also shows a lot of demographic information such as gender, age, and user location. 

Additional resources

  • A more technical guide on how Google Analytics works.

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Example of certificate of achievement
Example of certificate of achievement