How does Google Search Console compare to Google analytics? In this article, I’ll show you key differences between these two tools, how they work, their features, pros and cons, and why you should use both tools.
Both tools give webmasters information about their sites, including traffic data, demographics, conversions, and rankings. But they serve different purposes. The main difference between them is that Google Analytics gives insight into user behavior within a website, whereas Google Search Console helps publishers learn about their organic search performance.
Table Of Contents
- What Is Google Analytics (GA)?
- What Is Google Search Console (GSC)?
- Why You Need To Use Both Tools?
- What Is The Difference Between Google Search Console And Google Analytics?
- Similarities Between Google Search Console and Google Analytics
- Why Google Search Console Google Analytics Data Never Matches
What Is Google Analytics (GA)?
You may already be familiar with Google Analytics; it’s a free Web analysis tool provided by Google. It collects information on how people use websites, including which pages are visited most often, what browsers or operating systems users use, how long they stay on the page, and other details. This data allows companies to see how well their marketing campaigns are working and where there might be any problems.
How Does Google Analytics Work?
With Google Analytics, you can create custom dashboards that allow you to view the data you want to see. These include charts that show how many visits came from mobile devices versus desktop computers, how much time users spend on specific pages of your site, or how many times a page was visited compared to others. With Google Analytics, you can track everything from clicks to purchases.
Here are some of its primary features:
- Customizable Dashboard – Create customized views of your data based on keywords, landing pages, source/medium, average time on page, bounce rate, etc.
- Real-time Reporting – View real-time stats as you go along
- Demographic Data – Collect demographic info like age, gender, location, device type, browser, etc
- Funnels – Compare conversion rates, bounce rates, exit points, etc
- Goals & Events – Set goals and events to understand visitor activity
- Segmentation – Group your data according to various criteria
- Audits – Review all GA settings at once
- Mobile Tracking – Track mobile usage
- Heatmaps – See exact place where users click most
- Ecommerce Tracking – Report eCommerce metrics
Pros and Cons of Google Analytics
- It’s Free
- Easy to set up
- Allows you to collect a wide variety of data
- It provides great reporting that’s easy to interpret and understand.
- It integrates quickly and easily with most popular CMS platforms like WordPress, Drupal and Joomla.
- Requires technical knowledge to set up
- It is a complex and large system and can take time to learn
- Complexity on implementing custom metrics
What Is Google Search Console (GSC)?
If you’re interested in learning more about how search engines work, Google Search Console is a good place to start. GSC helps publishers improve their SEO by providing insights into how their content ranks in search results. GSC is focused specifically on search engine optimization efforts.
How Does Google Search Console Work?
Google Search Console (GSC) provides more detailed information than Google Analytics about how search engines find and rank your website in search results. GSC is designed specifically to help you improve your SEO.
Here are some of its primary features:
- Comprehensive reporting – GSC provides comprehensive metrics that will help you understand how well your keywords perform in search engine queries.
- Keyword research – GSC allows you to analyze keywords related to your site and generate ideas for new content. This feature is especially useful if you’ve recently changed your URL structure or updated your site’s content.
- Website health check – GSC checks your site against best practices for SEO to identify potential issues.
- Website speed optimization – GSC helps you make sure that your site loads quickly. It analyzes your site’s loading speeds and compares them to industry standards. If your site isn’t meeting those standards, GSC suggests ways to improve the user experience.
- URL Inspection & Live Tests – GSC lets you inspect URLs to determine whether they are optimized correctly. You can also do live tests on your site so that you can evaluate how different versions affect rankings.
- Mobile-friendly website testing – GSC helps you ensure that your site works well for mobile devices.
- Page speed improvements – GSC identifies areas of your site that could slow down the load time.
- Better crawl coverage – GSC improves the crawl rate of your site by making sure that every section of your site is indexed.
- Site verification – GSC verifies the accuracy of your meta tags and title tag. Verifying these elements of your site ensures that search engines know exactly who owns each page and what the page is about.
- Advanced reporting – GSC gives you access to advanced reports that allow you to view your site’s performance across various dimensions such as traffic sources, location, device type, referrer, etc.
Is Google Search Console Data Accurate?
Yes. GSC data is accurate because it comes directly from Google. That means no one else has access to the data. Therefore, all the data you see is unique to your site.
Pros and Cons of Google Search Console
- Monitor, maintain, and troubleshoot your site’s presence in Google Search results.
- Helps you understand and improve how Google views your site.
- Fix new or updated content indexing issues.
- GSC does not show up for some keywords
- GSC takes too long to update
- No detection dates on the incoming links.
- Mobile usability suggestions are not always helpful.
Why You Need To Use Both Tools?
If you have a large number of pages, then it would be difficult to use only GSC. On the other hand, GSC alone may not provide enough guidance. In order to get the maximum benefit out of both tools, you need to combine their strengths. For example, GSC can help you fix broken URLs while GA can tell you more about your visitors’ behavior. Similarly, GSC can give you an idea about where your traffic is coming from but GA can provide more specific information.
How to Make the Best Use of Both Tools?
Here are some tips to maximize the benefits of using both tools;
- Before performing any changes, test them with GSC first.
- Use GSC to find the root cause of a problem.
- GSC should be used to fix problems without affecting your existing organic traffic.
- Use GA to monitor the effectiveness of your efforts and see how much traffic you’re getting from organic searches.
- Test the impact of any changes made through GSC before implementing them.
- Analyze the data provided by both GSC and GA to gain insights into which SEO strategy is working best for your site.
What Is The Difference Between Google Search Console And Google Analytics?
The difference between Google Search Console and Google Analytics is that Google Search Console is focused on improving your SEO, whereas Google Analytics is primarily concerned with measuring website traffic.
Similarities Between Google Search Console and Google Analytics
- They both track visitors to your website.
- They both offer free services.
- They both help you monitor the performance of your website.
Why Google Search Console Google Analytics Data Never Matches
There are multiple reasons why GSC and GA data never match. Some of the reasons include:
- There might be errors in the data.
- When there is a change in ownership, it will take time for this change to appear in the data.
- Errors in crawling could lead to inaccurate data.
- The data could be outdated.
That was quite a mouthful! However, I am glad that I was able to help clear things up for you. To sum it up, both tools provide similar information, but they do not always tell you exactly the same thing. This means that you will need to use both tools together to gain a full understanding of your website traffic and the data provided by each tool. The difference between these two tools is that Google Search Console provides you with a snapshot of your entire site at once, whereas Google Analytics shows you detailed information about individual pages within your site.
In this post, we have discussed Google Search Console vs Google Analytics comparison. We hope our post helps you understand these two different tools better. As we mentioned earlier, they are complementary to each other. So make sure you combine them to get the best insights. Also, share your thoughts on this topic by leaving a comment below.