The key to growing your ecommerce business is to be continually optimizing your website and marketing; however it is surprising how many merchants still don’t make use of the free tools that are available to help you achieve this.
Google Analytics is one of these tools that you should definitely be using to gain insight into how prospects interact with your website.
In this post I am going to run through the steps to getting started with Google Analytics. In my next post I will go into detail explaining how you can interpret this data to make improvements to the conversion rate of your website.
Installing Google Analytics
Go to the Google Analytics home page and sign in using your Google account. When you first sign up for Analytics you will be asked to provide some basic information such as account name, website name, website URL and your time zone. Once you have accepted the terms and conditions, then click “Get Tracking ID”.
Google will then take you to a page with your UA (Universal Analytics) ID and a unique tracking code. Typically you would need to copy and paste this code into the HTML of every page on your website just before the </body> tag.
Fortunately, all you need to do on Sellr is log in to the control panel, go to “marketing”, “external sales tracking”, and then paste your UA ID in the Google Analytics section.
Once you have done this, bear in mind that it can take Google up to 24 hours to verify that your tracking scripts have been installed.
After Analytics has been installed, basic data that you will get includes…
Once you have some data about your website, you now need to decide on the key performance indicators, known as “goals” that you will monitor to judge the success of your website.
To set these up, in the “admin” section select “goals” and then “new goal”. You will see that there are 4 defined types of goal. These are...
Using the example of setting up a destination goal where the destination is the Order Complete screen, you need to link to the goal URL in the destination field.
Google makes this clear, but remember that rather than post the full page link you need only paste the directory and file name, e.g. /thankyou.html instead of www.example.com/thankyou.html.
Setting up duration and pages per session goals is useful for tracking the level of engagement that visitors have with your website, and these are fully explained in Analytics. Event goals are more complex to set up and are not too important for the time being.
You can also add a monetary value to a goal if applicable, but it is the option below called “funnel” that is most useful in terms of improving the performance of your website.
The Sales Funnel is one of the most important aspects of Google Analytics. This shows you the stages where visitors leave your website before completing a goal and highlights which areas you should optimize.
Every sale or conversion complete page on your website will have a series of pages leading to it. For example a purchase would most likely involve…
Home page > Catalogue > Product page > Add to cart > Checkout > Order complete
To set this up, in the funnel option of the “goal details” section, add the name and URL of each page leading up to the goal in the designated fields in the order you expect your customer to follow.
There is another option called “required”. Setting this to “yes” allows you to only monitor the sales funnel for people who start at stage 1 of the funnel, e.g. home page.
To view this funnel, go to “reporting” and then scroll down to “conversions”.
This concludes the essentials for setting up a Google Analytics account. In the next post I will explain how to interpret your data and how to link your Analytics account with AdWords to optimise your digital marketing strategy.
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