Last updated on August 1st, 2018 at 06:23 pm
If you’re new to blogging, you may not even know what Google Analytics is. In this tutorial, I am going to walk you through step-by-step on how to setup Google Analytics on WordPress without having to use a plugin, using the Genesis Framework.
The theme that I am using for this tutorial, is the Centric Pro theme from Genesis.
I know that most people won’t have the money to get started with a premium theme.
So I will also do a tutorial on how to setup Google Analytics using a free plugin you can find in the WordPress plugin repository and use it on any theme. Don’t forget to check out my ultimate guide to Google Analytics to see which reports I pay attention to.
Before we get into the actual installation of Google Analytics, you might be thinking. What’s the purpose of it?
I know that you have a lot of things to do grow your blog.
Related articles to help you improve your blogging:
- Understanding the WordPress Dashboard – Let Me Show You Around
- How to Set Up Google Analytics In Genesis WordPress Theme
- Affiliate Marketing Tips That Will Increase the Conversions On Your Blog
There’s content to write, videos to create and edit, Pinterest images to create, network with other bloggers the list goes on.
Why should you take the time out of your busy schedule to setup Google Analytics.
Here’s the simple answer, you need to be able to track your online progress, so you can know where to devote your time and energy.
Without knowing what’s working for your blog, you are flying blind and you could be wasting your time.
Let’s get it installed now, even if your blog is brand new.
How to Setup Google Analytics On WordPress
If you don’t have an account, then now is the time to create one.
If you’re already using Gmail then you can get an account using your existing Gmail address.
Step 1: Create your Account
If not then sign up for your account.
Now that you have an account, it’s time to setup your website, so you can start seeing the results or lack of results from your marketing efforts.
Step 2: Adding Your Website Information
As soon as you sign up you are taken to this screen.
The process is pretty simple and easy to follow along, but I’ll tell you exactly how to fill out the info.
What would you like to track: choose website
Account Name: Enter your name here.
Website Name: This is to help you keep track of all the websites you have on your account. I called mine Susan Velez since that is my domain name.
Website URL: Enter your domain name.
Industry Category: Choose a category that your website fits into from the drop-down menu.
Reporting Time Zone: Choose your corresponding time zone.
Data Sharing Settings: This is where you can decide what type of emails you want to receive from Google. I usually uncheck them all.
Now click on “Get Tracking ID.”
You’re almost done.
Time to grab that tracking ID.
Adding The Google Analytics to Centric Pro
In order to follow along, you will need to download a copy of the Centric Pro theme. This requires using the Genesis Framework, which is a paid theme. However, this is what I am using on my website and I highly recommend it.
A lot of my tutorials will be based on this theme.
Login to your WordPress website, if you’re having issues logging in, then read this.
Scroll down the left side of your dashboard until you see Genesis.
Click on it and then go to “Theme Settings.”
Scroll down until you see the “Header and Footer Scripts.”
Paste your code directly into that box. Now click on “Save Changes.”
You’ve no successfully installed analytics on the Genesis theme. Now you can log out of your blog and give it some time to start tracking analytics.
Can’t Afford A Premium Theme?
I understand. That’s why I am going to show you a plugin you can use on any free theme. For this demonstration, I will be using my demo site which is using the Twenty Sixteen Theme.
As with any plugins that you add to your website, anything can break, that’s why I recommend you back it up if you haven’t.
I will be installing a plugin called Google Analytics by MonsterInsights.
This is the plugin that used to be called Google Analytics by Yoast. MonsterInsights acquired it and changed the name, you can read more about it here.
So let’s get started adding the free plugin to WordPress.
Click here to download and install the plugin.
Install the Google Analytics Plugin
After you’ve installed the plugin and activated it, it’s time to grab your Analytics ID.
If you’re unsure of how to work with plugins, read this.
Go to the plugin settings.
Now it’s time to add your Google tracking code.
You have 2 options to connect the code with your Google Analytics account.
Option 1: Click “Authenticate With Your Google Account”
Option 2: Manually add your tracking ID.
We will using option 2 for this tutorial.
If you use this method, just know that you won’t be able to use the dashboards from inside your blog.
So if you want to see your stats on your dashboard, use option 1.
Grab UA Code
Go back over to your Google Analytics account and grab your UA code. This is what you will be pasting in this box.
Highlight and copy the code. Now go back to your plugin settings and paste the code into your site.
After you paste your UA code, you have a few options. If you are unsure of what any of them mean, just click on the question mark right beside them to get a better understanding of what each one does.
Track outbound clicks and downloads: Yes you want to track this.
Allow tracking of anonymous data: Decide if you want to track this type of data.
Anonymize IPs: You can decide if you want to anonymize the IP’s.
Ignore Users: Keep this as default as this will prevent your own visits to your website messing up your analytics stats.
Once you’ve decided how you want to setup the plugin, click on save changes.
You should now see your current UA profile.
This means that and is connected to your account and will start gathering data.
Universal Settings: Leave as default.
Advanced Settings: I usually leave this as default. However, you can dig deeper and setup your advanced settings the way you choose.
Custom Dimensions: This requires you to purchase the premium plugin so you can unlock extra features.
Debug: I never mess with this tab.
How To Tell If The Code Is Added Correctly
Now that the code has been added to your website either with the plugin or without, you need to know how to check to see if it’s been added properly.
Log back into your Google Analytics account and head on over to the “Admin” tab.
Click on the “Tracking Code”
If this is a new account you will see something to the effect of:
This is how mine looks like because I’ve had Google Analytics setup on this site since I started my blog.
If you just setup a new account yours will say:
Status: Receiving Data
If you don’t see that, give it some time to start tracking. I’ve noticed that sometimes it can take up to 24 – 48 hours for tracking information to start showing up.
Now You Have Access To Valuable Information
Now that you’ve got the tracking setup, you can use these statistics to help you learn important things about your WordPress blog such as:
- How many visitors you have
- Where your visitors are coming from
- The most popular pages on your website
- How people are finding you online
- and so much more
You can then use these statistics to help improve your conversions and increase your sales on your WordPress blog.
When Should I Add It To My Site?
If you’ve already installed WordPress there is no better time to install it. If you need help installing WordPress, read this step-by-step tutorial.
Based on the information you receive you can focus on the traffic methods that are actually driving traffic to your blog.
Hand Picked Articles for You
- Ultimate Guide to Google Analytics
- Remove Yourself From Google Analytics
- 35 Most Important Things You Should Do After Installing WordPress
Final Take Away
You’re wasting your time trying to grow your blog without using some type of analytics. Do yourself a favor and set this up, otherwise, you won’t know where your visitors are coming from. If you are brand new and still trying to figure out how to get started read my tutorial on how to start a blog or if you need help with plugins read this.
Have you set up Google Analytics on your website? Are you using it to track your visitors and watch the growth of your blog?
Recommended Blogging Resources:
- Free 12 Day Blogging Bootcamp
- Article about using Yoast SEO for optimizing your blog posts and how to do it.
- SEMRush Free Trial to Gather Low Competitive Keywords
- Quiz: Which theme is best for your blog?
- If you want to build an email list and send newsletters, I recommend ConvertKit (starts at $29)