LONG INTRO – PROBLEM STATEMENT
So you decided that now it’s time to shine for you and your business. Your idea will definitely change the world for the better. Most probably, you’ve even realized that your startup probably needs a website, so people can read about your product, leave feedback or even order it. Most probably, you realized that a website is needed prior to the desired launch date. Though, you put your heart and soul into this website, which has a high mission of carrying your brand value and philosophy to visitors. Now it’s launch time! You have everything handy – the product or MVP, fancy website ideas to present your product to the audience, and a few-page website which is created “for now” to cover the basic requests of users.
In one of our previous articles, we’ve told you why we think that your R&D office isn’t enough to bring your product to market (spoiler – you need a marketing and business development units as well). One thing which is crucial for understanding for every entrepreneur is the fact that release and actual usage of product or service are 2 different things. Very often, startups fail to attract the correct audience to their products or don’t bother themselves with research on their target audience (Red Bull’s initial target audience were truck drivers, and even today they are one of the major consumers). Moreover, less than half or even a quarter of companies get stuck somewhere between R&D team product release and actual usage by at least some of the users.
BUT WHY DOES THIS ALL MATTER?
You wouldn’t launch a startup, if you won’t be a dreamer, at least to a certain extent. Imagine that tomorrow TechCrunch miraculously notices your “idea to change the world” and writes a whole article about your startup idea. Sounds superb? Though in the real world, the only outcome that you will get is a short-lasting hype and a few business contacts, that would reach out to you with some offers. This will be the moment when you will assess your mistakes and understand that releasing a unique website with no marketing tools is definitely not enough nowadays. That is why we’ve prepared this guide on 4 MUST-HAVE Google tools list to install on your website before launching it publically. These tools are crucial for any startup to actually know what’s going on with their first website visitors and get the first and most precious feedback from the target audience.
Google Tag Manager
Above all, you need to install primary Google tools on your website. The first and most crucial thing which you need to do is to create a Google Tag Manager. The general rule is the following – no matter what website projects are you running or developing, Google Tag Manager is the first thing that you need to install on your website.
The reason why we recommend setting it up so badly is that it makes the life of a marketing manager or analyst much easier. With GTM, you would forget that you need to ping the front-end developers or webmasters any time you want to set up a new conversion goal on some page. Just ask them to install Google Tag Manager once – and that’s it. You can configure all the other tags like Google Analytics, Facebook or Twitter pixels and many others without assistance from anyone else.
The setup flow is quite easy for a person with basic knowledge of HTML and would require some guides reading for a person who doesn’t know the HTML basics.
- Step 1: First of all, you need to create an account at tagmanager.google.com. With a Google account, it’s quite easy to do in just a few clicks.
- Step 2: Then the service offers you to paste GTM container to your website. There will be 2 parts of copypaste code – you should insert the first part of code should be placed in a website’s <head>, as close to top as possible. We suggest making it the second line of code right after the <head> element. The second part should be placed right after the <body> tag. Here we also suggest putting the GTM no-script part right after the tag itself.
It’s also worth mentioning that if you’re using some of the most popular CMS, like Clickfunnels or Tilda, then there will be a separate field for GTM tracking code and they will have it inserted for you on a whole website. WordPress, for instance, offers a header.php file which will put your script to all pages of the website at once. For guidance and assistance on how to set up a GTM on a hardcoded website, platform or mobile app – we’re here to help.
Don’t tell anyone that you’ve never heard of Google Analytics. This tool is a must-have for any website for one good reason – it’s the eyes for you to see how people interact with your website. Session duration, bounce rate, amount of pages per session, amount of visits, audience insights, traffic sources and loads of other information is available to track on your website with GA. There is no way to launch a website without any analytics – one won’t recognize if anyone is visiting the website at all.
If you have the Google Tag manager set up properly, then setting up Google Analytics is a 5-minute task. Just go to analytics.google.com and create an account if you don’t have one. It will suggest you get one more 2-piece code tracker and will ask you to insert it to your website. Though, if you have a GTM set up already, then you can insert your tracking code right there.
- Just go to Google Tag Manager and click the “Add new tag” button.
- Choose the tag type as “Google Analytics” Universal Analytics.
- Now you would have to create a new variable. Choose the cookie domain as “auto” and insert a tracking code from your Google Analytics account.
- Create a name for your tag.
Now is the time to set up a trigger for your Page View tag.
- Just click on a button field with the title “Trigger”
- Select “Create a new trigger”.
- In the list of triggers, you need to choose “Page View”
- Set up a triggering rule as “All Pages”
- Name your trigger and press “Save button
Congrats! You’re all set with Google Analytics page view tracking on your website. You just need to press the “Save” button and publish an update to Google Tag Manager.
The Search Console is a tool that helps website owners track organic traffic coming to their websites, its positions in Google search and keyword ranking, along with loads of technical details. Very often Search Console is called Google Webmaster Tools, so don’t be confused with the different wording. This tool is necessary for a new business because it shows the extent to which Google is familiar with your website. If Google is well aware of your website and it’s content and “trusts” it to a certain extent, then Search Console will reflect this info. It shows a wide range of info about organic traffic, keywords in which you were ranked and average positions of your company in different Google search queries. Sounds like a pretty necessary tool isn’t it?
To set up Google search console you need to:
- Visit Search Console website
- Enter a domain name, which you’re planning to track with this tool
- Verify domain property with a DNS record, using the instructions provided in the message
- To verify your website with DNS record you would have to your hosting provider and create new TXT DNS record with the information shown in a string
- Click verify and wait up to 1 day (usually it takes a few hours)
In fact, this step isn’t related to website development itself, though it’s a necessary step for any respectful company – especially if your product or services requires the presence of customers in the location of your residence. This will get people in your city and nearest locations know that your business is present and operational, and, what’s most important, it’s really close to them. It’s somehow similar to paid advertising targeting neighbors in the area – though it’s free of charge and permanent.
To set up Google Business account you have to:
- Go to their website
- Press “Create” button” and fill in all the fields of text
- Press “Verify” button
- Choose one of the options of verification – in most cases the only way to verify your business would be via mail from Google, which they will send to your address.
- After 1-2 weeks you will get your post and use the code from the letter to verify Google Business
Instead of Conclusion
Congrats! Now your company has a primary set of tools to track the performance of your website and flow of users on it. You will definitely see the benefits of installing all of these tools in a few months – your business is available for discovery on Google Maps. Also, you have all the information about Google rankings of your website and analytics of website visits. Isn’t it something that you’d like to know during the first months of operation? After all, these tools might help you improve your business design – like change a certain product or service (because it’s not viewed for more than 5 seconds), or optimize your website to look more appealing to local visitors.
Anyway, you know that you’re at the beginning of a long road to success and the best we can do is to wish you good luck!