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Google Analytics Landing Pages

Google Analytics Landing Pages is a useful report for gathering key metrics about your website traffic and analyzing how customers interact with your landing pages.

But the GA Landing Pages report can only tell you so much.

Take bounce rates, for example: GA can tell you which pages have a high bounce rate, but it can’t tell you why customers leave before taking action on your site. To know that, you need to complement the quantitative data from GA with qualitative user data from product experience insights.

This page shows you how to get the most out of the GA Landing Pages report: learn what it is, where to find it, and how to use product experience insights to add context to your landing page data.

Get the full story with Hotjar

Numbers can’t tell you everything. Experience your landing pages through your customers' eyes with Hotjar.

What is the Landing Pages report in Google Analytics?

The Landing Pages report in Google Analytics tells you which pages visitors see first when they land on your site—and whether those visits turn into clicks and conversions.

The report can be tricky to find in GA, and even once you’re there, you might get confused by what you see. That’s because the way a 'landing page' is defined in this report is specific to Google. Let’s dig deeper:

How does Google Analytics define landing pages?

In Google Analytics, a landing page is the first web page that users see when they enter your site. 

Unlike a marketing team's definition of a 'landing page'—a web page that has been designed to convert—GA's definition includes any first page of a session, regardless of the purpose of the page. That means the Landing Pages report could include traffic data about product pages, a blog post, a help page, a sign-up page, or something else entirely.

Where is the Google Analytics report for landing pages? 

To find the Landing Pages report in Google Analytics, use the navigation sidebar on the left side of your screen: Home > Reports > Behavior > Site Content > Landing Pages.

Depending on whether you’ve linked your website to Google Search Console, you may also find a report in Home > Acquisition > Search Console > Landing Pages. The Search Console report will only show you landing page data generated by search results.

We’ll focus on the report found in Site Content for this guide.

Where to find landing pages in GA

Pro tip: if you’re having trouble finding Landing Pages, try using the search bar at the top of the GA Home page.

What are the key metrics in the landing pages report?

Landing Pages reports help you understand how users interact with key pages on your website. Here are some metrics to look out for:

  • Sessions: the number of sessions starting from a specific landing page

  • New users: the number of landing page visitors who have never interacted with your website before

  • Bounce rate: the percentage of users who left your site straight after arriving at the landing page, without further interaction with your website

  • Average session duration: how long users, on average, stay on your website during a single session

What are the key metrics in GA Landing Pages

Pro tip: try adjusting the date range of the GA Landing Pages report to get more data insights on key metrics.

Top 3 benefits of using the Google Analytics landing pages report

Analyzing your landing pages is a good place to start when you want to understand how people find and use your website. The top three benefits of using GA Landing Pages are:

1. Find out which pages are introducing people to your website

When you know which websites are successfully introducing people to your website and encouraging conversions, you can create or optimize other landing pages to double down on what works. 

For example, if you know customers are signing up for your free trial through a call to action (CTA) on a specific blog post, you can try to replicate that success by including similar CTA language and placement on other blogs posts, too. Couple GA’s insights with behavior analytics software, like heatmaps and session recordings, to see exactly which elements of your landing pages are successfully engaging visitors (more on this later).

2. See how visitors are discovering your content

Arriving on a landing page isn’t necessarily the start of your customer’s journey. Use segments to understand how new visitors found your website, and what type of users engage with different elements of your landing pages. You can use this information for targeted advertisement strategies and search engine optimization (SEO).

For example, using a demographic segment, you might discover that people between the ages of 26 and 30 make purchases after arriving on your site through Instagram ads. Based on this data, you can more confidently adjust your marketing strategy to invest more in targeting this demographic through paid channels.

3. Measure landing page performance

Use the Landing Pages report to find out which landing pages are successfully encouraging users to stick around—and convert!—and which pages need more work. You can use filters and set conversion goals to get a clear picture of what success looks like for your site.

For example, you might notice that a particular landing page has a higher bounce rate than others, and decide to test some changes—like optimizing the page for mobile devices. 

Using filters in the GA Landing Pages report, you can track bounce rates over time and notice which adjustments successfully reduce your bounce rate. You could go a step further by analyzing session recordings, which show you how different elements of your landing pages are causing frustration (again, we’ll talk more about this later).

How to use advanced filters in Google Analytics Landing Pages 

Use advanced filters in GA to look at the performance of specific page types and understand how they perform as landing pages.

Note: advanced filters rely on the structure of your website URLs. If your URLs are properly structured to categorize your website pages, then using advanced filters is straightforward—just click the ‘advanced’ button in GA Landing Pages, then add the criteria you’re interested in. 

Click ‘advanced’:

Using advancing filters in GA Landing Pages

Add your search criteria:

Using advancing filters in GA Landing Pages

For example, you could look more closely at the performance of your product demo pages by using the filter ‘product-demo’ to look at every landing page with this term included in the URL.

How to add a new goal in Google Analytics Landing Pages

Setting goals for landing pages can help you define and track your website performance.

Every website should be developed with a goal in mind, an action you want the user to take on your site. Even a brochure site should strive to entice visitors to fill out a lead form, download a datasheet, or complete a questionnaire. Only by setting goals can you accurately assess the success or failure of any single acquisition channel.

Rameez Usman

Here’s how to set up a new goal:

Click on the small cog at the bottom of the GA navigation sidebar to switch to the Admin panel. Once you’re in the Admin panel, click ‘Goals’ under the ‘View’ column on the far right:

How to set up landing page goals in Google Analytics

In the next view, you’ll see a red button that says ‘+ New Goal’. Click that to begin goal setup.

Add new goal

From here, you can choose whether to use a pre-made template or to set a custom goal. If you’re new to goals, we recommend starting with a template.

Next, you’ll be prompted to set a ‘destination’. Visits to the destination URL will indicate goal completion.

Here’s an example of a completed goal: 

  1. The user lands on a page for a pre-recorded product demo. 

  2. Clicking ‘download now’ sends them to a sign-up form. 

  3. After completing the form, the user arrives at another page that thanks them for completing the form and explains that the demo will be sent to the email address they provided.

  4. You previously set the form’s ‘thank you’ page as your destination URL, so now GA will register that your goal has been met, and your goal conversion rate will be improved.

Pro tip: you can set a monetary value as a goal using the ‘Value’ field. Use this alongside GA Ecommerce Tracking to help reach important KPIs.

As you’ve seen, Google Analytics can help you measure key trends in your website traffic. But GA Landing Pages is only reporting the numbers—the quantitative data.

If you want to improve your landing pages and conversion rates, you’ll need to look at a combination of quantitative and qualitative data. That’s the difference between seeing what users are doing on your website and understanding why they do it.

And this is where product experience insights software can help. When you combine Google’s stats with a contextual understanding of how your customers experience your website, your traffic and user data starts to make sense—you can connect the what with the why to make data-backed improvements to your site.

Try these behavior analytics tools to help make sense of your landing page trends:

1. Session recordings 

Session recordings, or session replays, show you real actions users take on your website. They’ll help you see what your users see, including the problem elements you were missing.

Watching the mouse move, click, and scroll across multiple pages, you’ll notice:

  • How users navigate your site

  • How they interact with various elements

  • Where they hesitate

  • Where they get stuck or frustrated


How do session recordings help? Once you’ve used Google Analytics to identify which landing pages aren’t performing well, watch session recordings for each page. You’ll see the real experiences behind each bounce or lost conversion, and with these insights, you’ll be in a better position to optimize your pages based on real users' needs.

2. Heatmaps 

Heatmaps use color-coding to give a visual representation of how users interact with your site. When it’s all laid out in color, can easily identify:

  • What attracts users' attention

  • What they ignore

  • Whether their behavior changes after you release an update


How do heatmaps help? Heatmaps use color to show which elements of your website are hot (red) or not (blue). This visual representation of popular clicks, scrolls, and mouse movements is useful for understanding where interest is piqued and lost across your website. With evidence of what works and what doesn’t, you can improve UX and analyze responses to new elements.

3. Customer feedback

Surveys and Incoming Feedback widgets are the best way to get detailed insight into how your customers feel about your landing pages, in their own words. Reading customer feedback helps you put yourself in their shoes and understand their behavioral trends in context. 

With surveys and feedback widgets, you can:

  • Gather instant feedback as users interact with your website

  • Understand the strengths and weaknesses of your interface

  • Discover why users exit or churn

#The Hotjar Incoming Feedback widget is easy to use and quick to implement
The Hotjar Incoming Feedback widget is easy to use and quick to implement

How does customer feedback help? If you start making changes to your website based on GA data alone, you’ll be operating in the dark. Feedback widgets measure instant impressions from users as they navigate your website, while surveys give you detailed feedback and ideas for improvement. Use these customer experience insights to illuminate GA data and make more informed improvements to your landing pages.

Google Analytics Landing Pages vs product experience insights software

It’s not a question of competition when it comes to using GA Landing Pages or product experience insights software; the best way to understand your customers is to use data from both.

GA Landing Pages helps you identify key metrics, set goals, and measure performance. But only the customer can tell you exactly how they're experiencing your website and what’s driving them to convert (or not). 

Product experience insights help you understand the user experience through your customer’s eyes, and help you develop user-centric digital marketing and product strategies.

Get the full story with Hotjar

Numbers can’t tell you everything. Experience your landing pages through your customers' eyes with Hotjar.

FAQs about Google Analytics Landing Pages