How Do Mobile Visitors Behave On Your Site?

We talked about the importance of using the right attribution model with your paid ads and ways to optimise your campaigns for success. By now, you understand how complex the path to purchase really is and why AdWords experts need to view multiple touch points on the consumer journey. Measuring success based only on the last-click model does not give any credit to your marketing efforts prior to the last click. It is rare that the first visit to a website leads to a conversion, especially with higher dollar items.

Our previous posts on attribution and optimisation provide a basic understanding of those concepts and you can go even deeper to better comprehend mobile activity and the value of it in the bigger picture of overall conversions on your website.

In this post, we will continue talking about AdWords but will be analyzing it in your Google Analytics account. Our goal is to better understand the behaviour of mobile visitors specifically. If you are new to Google Analytics, you can read about setting it up in one of our earlier posts or visit Google’s support page to learn how to connect Google AdWords with Google Analytics.


Year to Year comparison

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A simple way to start in Google Analytics is to do a year-to-year comparison in Google Analytics for paid traffic from mobile visitors. In the above example, you can easily see how much mobile has increased over the previous year. This can help you make a case to anyone in your organization who does not feel they need to give much consideration for paid traffic from mobile! You can easily see not only the number of sessions, but also changes in conversions and other meaningful metrics for paid traffic.


Engagement Metrics

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People are spending time on mobile early in their journey to do research. They rarely just purchase. Instead, they do some initial research for a particular product or service. Although some may convert on a desktop once they make the decision to purchase, they often start on a mobile device which is why paid traffic is valuable early in the funnel. You want to be in front of people when they are considering options. To view engagement metrics with your audience, look at behaviour data in Google Analytics. Although pageviews and number of pages visited are soft goals, they are indicators to determine how engaged mobile visitors are with your site. Seeing a visitor engage with your site on a mobile design is a good sign.



Anyone who sells online naturally want to look at their ecommerce data for those macro conversions. They want to see purchases and a significant number of them. However, as mentioned above, micro conversions may ultimately lead to a sale. In addition to the page views and number of pages mentioned above, a goal of registering for something on a website is useful because once someone registers, they are getting closer to loyal customer stage.

While you will want to compare mobile performance to other devices for macro conversions and ecommerce, do not overlook the completion of these softer goals on the way to a sale. Keep in mind all positive website behaviour that is relevant to your business before determining something was a success or failure. You can also compare past conversions from previous mobile visitors and see what they did on their way to converting. You may discover some new campaign and targeting ideas to implement moving forward and encourage conversion with your new mobile visitors from paid traffic.


Default Channel Grouping

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The default channel grouping report is available in Google Analytics under Acquisition > All Traffic > Channels and tells us about our traffic sources in general. But what about the difference in traffic specifically for paid traffic from mobile devices?

To view that data, you will want to start in your mobile device overview report and add Default Channel Grouping as a secondary dimension. Compare this data for your different devices to show the value of AdWords for desktop and tablet compared to mobile. Although the bounce rate for paid traffic may be a bit higher on a mobile device, that is expected when people aren’t directly looking for a specific business yet. It does not necessarily mean that this touchpoint was a waste of time and money.


Loading time

What is your mobile site loading time for those who convert versus those who don’t? View this by looking at mobile converters compared to mobile non-converters with a segment to see what a mobile converter is doing that a mobile non-converter is not doing. Look for the ads that brought in mobile converters, which landing pages users are most likely to be responsive to, and other metrics such as age grouping.

As you can see below, you create the mobile converter segment by selecting a condition where the device category is mobile and during the session, either a goal was completed or a transaction occurred. This segment will account for both micro and macro conversions. Decide too if you want to filter by sessions or users, keeping in mind that users can have multiple sessions.


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Next create a second segment that displays data when there was not a conversion, meaning goals equaled zero and transactions equaled zero and the device category was mobile to compare both types of visitors.

Once you have these two segments, one thing you can examine is site speed or load time will see if that impacted the decision to take action. You can drill down even further to display data only for a transaction or only for a goal. You may discover that people who convert do so when the average page load time is only a couple seconds, but people who do not convert on mobile had an average page load time of much longer. As page load time increase, page abandonment also increases.


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All website owners should take a look at their page load time compared to conversions on different devices. You may have a great ad, creative, and targeting but if the user can’t access the website on mobile device, those efforts are all going to go to waste. Not sure how your site is performing? You can take a quick look at your site is doing with Google’s PageSpeed Insights tool.

And of course, you can look at this segmented converter versus non-converter data in the context of other Google Analytics reports. Using it to view site speed, page load time or other usability metrics is only one example. These segments of mobile converters and mobile non-converters, can also be used to build out audiences and create remarketing lists off these audiences.

You can get even more advanced and look at things like people who converted in the United States versus United States people who did convert or some other dimension. This short clip will help you create and use segments to investigate other areas of your account.

As you spend some time in Google Analytics to measure behaviour and know the right questions to ask about your target audience, you begin to understand better how you can use this data, especially when it comes to your mobile strategy.