Analytics Tip: Find & Fix Your 404 pages

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I was checking one of my project dashboards and was surprised to see that I had over 60 sessions where 404 pages came up. For those of you not familiar with that term, that’s when someone clicks on a link and the page isn’t found. These pages more than likely popped up during a paid campaign, which translates into lost conversions and money wasted.

They needed to be found and fixed fast!

How do you isolate 404 pages in Google Analytics?

As this is about landing pages and page titles, I knew that  I needed to check the Acquisition reports. I chose the Source/Medium reports because I needed to find out more about where the traffic came from.

I left the Primary Dimension as is but needed to add a secondary dimension for Page Title.

This showed me that all of my Page Not Founds were from my AdWords campaigns.

Next I needed to find out which campaigns. I went to Primary Dimension>Other and chose Ad Content. That was the only one available as I realized I couldn’t find the Ad Group Dimension.

The Ad Content gives you the first line of the ad used. Considering that I had changed the Ads recently, this was not as helpful as I thought.

I decided to try the Keyword as Primary Dimension and that wound up giving me a better clue. I recognized the keywords and could isolate the Ad Groups from memory.

Still, that wasn’t good enough. I needed to see the specific Ad Group

That was when I saw Acquisition>All Campaigns reports.

I checked that out and found that isolate the AdWords Ad Group dimension under Other and use Page Title as secondary.

I was able to find the specific Ads with bad pages in AdWords and fix them as well as checked the other ads to make sure the pages were right. Hopefully that’s the end of 404 pages…for a while.

I have created a custom report in Analytics Solutions Gallery that you can import into your account and customize for your own purposes. Click Here

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