Google Analytics is one of the best professional analytical tools that provide webmasters with all required data concerning website metrics and position on SERP. It gives an opportunity to track a success of search engine optimization campaigns and reach corresponding conclusions from the obtained information. Another obvious benefit of this Google analytics software is an ability to track a website backlinks. In GA external links are called referrals. That is why it is what you need to look for in your analytical reports.
This article is devoted to the information how to see backlinks in Google Analytics and how to differentiate them by quality and source. So, here we go.
Steps to see and check backlinks in Google Analytics reports
Chose the correct Google profile
On the initial stage of your cooperation with GA, you need to make sure that you are using the correct account, profile, and views as you may have several profiles here and numerous different projects that may cause a real mess. The site you are currently working with will be placed in the top right hand of the page. You need to click on it and select the appropriate one.
Backlinks traffic here is categorized by acquisition data. The following steps will help you to navigate your backlink report correctly:
Click “Acquisition” in the left-hand menu to check all acquisition reports;
Select “All Traffic” dropdown;
Click on “Referrals” button.
Referral report will provide you with backlinks data
The referral traffic sources can be found in Google Analytics section which is called “Referral Report.” Here you will see all required data about your backlinks and the sources where they place.
Practical techniques for checking backlinks in GA
There are some advanced quality techniques you can implement reading your backlink reports in GA.
Add new audience segments
To narrow your backlinks research and get more precise information, implement audience segmentation. This Google Analytics technique will help you to break down different visitors types coming to your site through backlinks.
To segment your backlinks, follow these steps:
Click on “Add Segments” button;
Use the search box;
Then click on “Apply” button to confirm;
After that, you will observe a percentage of new segment audience and comparative data.
To check your backlink sources, you can use “Primary Dimensions” function in GA. The default primary dimension is a source. In this tab, you can observe the backlinking domains. To observe the backlink page, you just need to click on one of the domains. By doing so, you will be able to see the referral path of your external links.
After checking all incoming backlink sources, you can also look at which landing pages you obtain references. You can do it, following these steps:
Click on “Landing Page”;
Then observed referenced landing pages;
Check your acquisition, behavior, and conversion data; (you can check these data trending upwards).