Google Search Console vs Google Analytics: The Differences

Key Takeaways

  • Google Search Console helps you find keyword opportunities, indexing issues, and performance concerns and more.
  • Google Analytics helps you understand how users travel your website, information on demographics, and conversion details and more.
  • Google Analytics and Google Search Console are not required to be used, but are highly recommended.

Many bloggers and small business owners get confused about the differences between Google Analytics and Google Search Console. Hopefully, this post will help break down those differences and offer advice on what to use each tool for.

Using them both is critical for understanding your website’s strong points – and not so strong points. The combined data you receive can help you greatly improve your organic search rankings, conversions, and user experience.

Google Search Console vs Google Analytics

What is the difference between Google Analytics and Google Search Console?

The difference between Google Search Console and Google Analytics is the type of data they deliver. Google Search Console delivers organic search result data that involves keyword data, indexing issues, and performance suggestions. Google Analytics offers more user-based data around user demographics, time on page, acquisition resources and more.

So let’s get right to it and break down the differences of what each of these tools offers. Then you can read more further down if you want to dig a bit deeper.

Google Search Console

Google Search Console focuses on sharing information about search data that is related to your website. This includes keywords, click-thru-rate (CTR), and other great metrics.

Below are some of the key indicators Google Search Console offers.

✔️ Find keywords that draw in traffic
✔️ User click-thru-rate
✔️ Impressions for keywords
✔️ Usability for mobile and desktop
✔️ Links – both internal and external
✔️ Find indexing issues
✔️ Sitemap submissions
✔️ Analyze keyword cannibalization issues

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is more geared towards helping you understand how users navigate your site, who they are, and how they convert on the site to create revenue.

Below are some of the key indicators Google Analytics offers.

✔️ User Behavior
✔️ Track conversions for forms, sales, etc.
✔️ Custom reports based on a variety of metrics
✔️ Acquisition data (ads, referrals, social etc.)
✔️Audience demographics
✔️Bounce rate
✔️ Time-on-page

The Pricing

Google Search Console is a 100% free tool that is provided by Google to help website owners improve their websites. While it is not mandatory to create an account and submit your website, it would be silly not to.

Google Analytics has a basic program that is free to all users and provides a generous amount of data. Analytics 360 is a higher level option that is usually used by enterprise level brands. From what I can tell, pricing looks to start at about $150,000 per year.

When To Use Google Search Console

You should use Google Console when you want to understand what keywords are working at bringing in traffic and to find out if you hav indexing issues for your pages.

I am girl-crushing on Google Search Console

It is the tool I use the most.

Think about it.

Google is GIVING you free data about your website. It cannot get much better than that.

I use Google Search Console to do some of the following:

  • Find cannibalization issues within my website pages
  • Evaluate click-thru-rates for keywords
  • Check that my pages are being indexed
  • Find usability issues
  • Internal link analysis
  • Find backlinks that are linking to my website

One of my main uses is to find keywords that Google Search Console is showing impressions for but have low CTR. Then I can better optimize my content with these terms to improve my organic reach and hopefully improve that CTR!

screenshot google search console interface

When To Use Google Analytics

You should use Google Analytics when you want to better understand how users are using your website and want to see more data around your conversions and funnels.

Whether you are a blogger, B-to-B, or e-commerce website the need to understand your users is critical in making decisions that can shape your online success. While Google Search Console can help with understanding keywords and search data, Google Analytics can help you better understand your user data.

Let’s cover some of the basics of the great information Google Analytics throws your way.

  • Bounce rate, which can help you understand if people are “sticking” on your site or just reading and leaving.
  • Time on page which is a good indicator whether users are reading your long form content or not.
  • Demographics so you can understand the countries, interests, technology, and other personal data to help you improve your website to match their interests.
  • Acquisition channels will help you understand where your traffic is coming from.
screenshot overview page in google analytics

Frequently Asked Questions

I am sure there are a ton more questions out there, so if you have some leave them in the comments and I will add them here as well. Below are some of the most common questions I get about these 2 tools:

Jill Caren
Jill Caren is the owner of ZenSpill, and is a part-time blogger who also works full time as an SEO Manager for Stratabeat, a digital marketing agency. Jill has been an SEO professional for over 15 years and has successfully built, sold, and flipped many websites over the years. Her passion is in making SEO easy to understand and showcasing different SEO tools to make SEO more manageable. Connect with her on LinkedIn!