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Anna Lewis

Exciting Real Time Search Results in Google Analytics

24th Nov 2011 Analytics 2 minutes to read

real time google analyticsOne of the recent new additions to Google Analytics is Real Time reports, an exciting place to see how many people are on your site right now! To see the data go to the Home tab and it is the first option on the left called Real-Time (Beta).

What can the Real Time Report be used for?

Here are some ideas:

  • See instant progress of social media shares
  • Track the take up of email promotions
  • Check it’s ok to make an update to your site
  • Follow the volume of traffic from new links
  • See which pages are busiest right now

In addition to these normal ideas, there is also the possibility that you can take visitor stalking to the next level. Imagine trying to second guess which page a user is looking at when they have phoned you up? This sounds spooky but could be beneficial to both you and them as you will be able to understand what they’re looking for/at more easily and help them more as a result.

It may also help you gain more accurate search term lead data if you’ve been using the ‘ask the caller how they found you’ method of lead tracking, as you can now find which traffic source most closely matches what they say they did.

Here are some screen shots and information about what the data shows you.


Real time analytics - visitors on site now

This shows how many new and returning visitors there are on your site right now, which can be useful if you’ve sent something out and what to see how many new people are looking compared to how many people who have been on your site before.

Within the Overview you can also see the top referrals, keywords,  locations and pages, as well as graphs showing when people have come to your site in the last 60 seconds and 30 minutes.

pageviews per minute


Under locations you can see where in the world people are accessing your site from at that very moment.

locations of visitorsYou can also see a map of where your users are, with larger blobs representing more visitors:

locations of website users map

By adding a plugin you should be able to see a Google Earth representation of where you users are, however I have never managed to get this to work!

Traffic Sources

Here we can see where people have come from to get to the site, this is most valuable when you promote content on your site through social media or an email which is likely to be viewed once promoted.

traffic sources

As I have access to a number of analytics profiles, here are some examples of the variations you could see across different types of websites at any given moment:

examples of traffic sources


This area highlights which pages your users are on now, which is good when you’ve just promoted a page with a tweet or email:

top pages



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