google analytics data for designing personas

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The following is a guest post by Cherryl Pereira, Head of Content at Chisel Labs

Many businesses are trying to figure out how to design personas for their customers. This can be difficult without the right data. Luckily, Google Analytics has all of the information you need to create compelling personas that will increase your conversion rates.

In this blog post, we’ll share some tips on how to use GA data to make more informed decisions about customer persona design.

Walking you through personas
Aggregating data for creating personas
Quantitative data needed for persona design
Google Analytics
Benefits of Google Analytics
Steps for developing personas using Google Analytics data


Walking you through personas

Personas are the fictional representation of your typical customer.

Unless you are a very large company with multiple target audiences, it is highly unlikely that your product will be used by everyone in the world. The question then becomes how do I focus on my actual customers?

Personas can help an organization direct its marketing efforts towards specific groups of consumers or users. This minimizes wasted spending on ineffective promotional activities targeting uninterested consumers who don’t fit into these personas.


Aggregating data for creating personas

We have two main types of data that we need to aggregate. The first type is qualitative and then we’ll aggregate the quantitative.

First, let’s look at some qualitative data about our users that can help us build out those personas:

Qualitative data mainly revolves around the needs and wants of our users. It can be gathered through surveys, interviews, focus groups, and forums.

Let’s look at some examples:

– What do they expect from using your website or app?

– How would you describe what it is like to use the product/service?

– Why did they choose your company as opposed to others in the industry?


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Quantitative data needed for persona design

Quantitative data is about facts and numbers. Let’s see how we can use this data to create personas based on goals, demographics, and engagement with site features:

Goal conversion rates (how many people complete specific tasks)

Demographics (like age, gender, etc.)

Engagement (how often they visit a specific area of the site)

If you have an e-commerce store or app that allows users to purchase products or services, this data will help you design personas.

If not and it’s a free product/service – think about what drives people towards using it? What are their motivations behind visiting the page frequently? Analyze these questions from Google Analytics data as well!

Quantitative data is great for creating marketing-oriented personas who use your product/service because of its features.

Qualitative data can be used to create user-oriented personas based on visitors’ feedbacks and experience with our product/service.

When designing personas, consider the following elements: demographics (e.g., age range, gender), behaviors (e.g., online shopping habits); motivations and goals; attitudes about their problem or your product/service; what did they do before using our solution? What are their actual needs that aren’t met by other competing products/services? How does it affect them on a personal level if certain features don’t work well for example?

Now before we look into the design process, let us understand the benefits of Google Analytics.

Read More: Quantitative User Research Methods That Work


Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a web analytics service offered by Google that tracks and reports website traffic.

It’s free to use and implement! You can find out where your visitors are coming from, what they do on your site, how long they stay, etc.

This data allows businesses to make decisions based on real user behavior instead of gut feelings.


Some benefits of Google Analytics

Google Analytics is extremely useful in measuring how users interact with your site.

It provides a great deal of insight into what works on the website and what doesn’t work for your users, allowing you to make informed decisions about future product development.

You can determine where most conversions are taking place on your site. This grants more clarity in terms of marketing strategy.

The data from Google Analytics allows marketers to create personas based on user behavior patterns by aggregating quantitative and qualitative information.

All available user data related to interactions across multiple websites or apps owned by an entity are combined. That way it becomes easier to identify useful patterns among large sets of people while keeping their identities anonymous.

If we didn’t have personas, companies would have to understand an entire population of users when they only need to focus on a small segment to make decisions. That is why all of this is important!


Steps for developing personas using Google Analytics data

So the first step is to get data from your website using Google Analytics.

First, you need to log in to the account and go to the “audience section,” found under the Dashboard tab.

After clicking on the Audience Section option, a new window will open up showing all the details about who visited your site.

This is where we will use our first tool, “Demographics Pro,” which gives better insights than other tools like Demographics for GA or Floify.

You might find these steps difficult especially if you do not know how websites work but don’t worry as I am here with simple explanations:

You have logged into the analytics platform by putting your username and password.

Audience > Demographics > Overview

This tool can be used to find out what sort of audience is visiting your site.

It tells us a lot about their age, gender, and location.

The next step is choosing affinity categories and finding out what sort of pages they visit.

To do so, select “Affinity categories” under the audience section on the left side menu bar which will appear as follows:

You can see there are six categories to choose from.

Now, if you look at the list of pages on your site which have a high-affinity score in each category, it will give you an idea about who visits those pages and how they behave when they visit them.

This method is not accurate but gives us some insights so we can use that information for creating personas as follows:

If the user interacts with the “Technology” page more than others then create a persona called Techy guy. You can also design personas based on the type of device used too, e.g if most traffic comes from phones then create an iPhone Guy Persona.

In this way, through interactions with web pages based on their interests/affinities users tell what sort of people they are and what they want from your website.

You can also see the user behavior of each page to figure which type of users connects with that page, how many times a day or week they visit it, etc. This will help you in creating personas.

Now it’s time to choose some specific keywords that are related to your topic. For instance, if you were writing about soccer then you might consider choosing words like football, player, etc.

This is how the affinity category works—it gives us an idea of topics or products people are interested in by giving them scores according to their website visits during certain periods. So click on each keyword one at a time for three weeks (total score).

The tool takes you directly into Google Analytics’ report page where you can find all sorts of information about the keyword in question.

You may also browse by geography to see where users are located. What you need to note here is the language of the website.

If you are writing about soccer then you might consider choosing words like football, player, and so on, because that is your language preference.

This will help in understanding what type of people are visiting your site and how they interact with it better

The next step would be to take a look at these keywords’ top landing pages over three weeks. Why? Because this can give us an idea of which part of our website users come from most often when arriving on our page through their search engines or referral links.

You may also check out each keyword’s top entry pages by browsing one by one during the same period mentioned above here too.

These areas within Google Analytics won’t only show you where visitors enter your site but what they do there as well.

When you collect all this data and aggregate it properly, you will be able to generate a persona that is representative of your target audience and create an experience that appeals directly to them.

Making the most out of Google Analytics data also lets us know which keywords we should focus on optimizing to get more traffic from search engines. This way we can ensure our site is reaching as much relevant traffic as possible but without spending too much time or resources doing so.

Google Analytics data is also a great resource for gathering demographic and geographic information. This will not only let you know who your customers are but where they’re from as well.

You can use this information to create targeted content that speaks directly to their needs and concerns based on these demographics as opposed to simply creating generic content everyone could be interested in reading about.



Doing all this research and analysis is really useful for creating personas that are based on real data, not just assumptions made about certain types of people who might use your product or service in the future.

Therefore, aiding you in the design process as well as marketing and advertising campaigns.


Cherryl Pereira is standing in front of a bush with white flowers. She is smiling, and her hair is down, partially covering her red outfitCherryl Pereira is the Head of Content at Chisel. Chisel Labs is a premiere agile product management software company that brings together roadmapping, team alignment, and customer connection.



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