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Why You Should Be Tracking Conversions In Google Analytics

SMPerth // 27th September 2017
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Setting up Google Analytics is fairly straightforward to do, especially if you have a WordPress website.

But after you’ve set it up, do you know what to do with it?

One of the most important things you need to do is track conversions in Google Analytics. But do you know why you should be tracking conversions in Google Analytics?

Knowing what actions people are taking and when is super important if you want to improve your online marketing efforts or track performance of your marketing campaigns, whether online or offline.

If you’re doing any kind of advertising, whether free or paid, online or offline, chances are people will come to your website. When they do, you want to know exactly what they do.

Are they bouncing off it within seconds? Are they clicking on one or two pages? Are they spending a few minutes looking around, finding out who you are and what you offer? Do they spend any time reading your blogs? Or are they just interested in your contact details or making a purchase?

All these stats are readily available in Google Analytics and should be checked regularly. However, measuring conversions is the clearest way to see what percentage of your visitors are generating you with an income, or taking the action you want them to take. There is no point knowing you have 10,000 visitors every month if you don’t know how many of them are turning into actual paying customers.

So What Kind Of Conversions Should You Be Tracking In Google Analytics?

Basically, any action you want someone to take on your website, should be tracked as a conversion.

Conversions, or goals, could be things like:

  • Filling out a contact form
  • Subscribing to your blog or newsletter
  • Clicking on a phone number to call your business
  • Downloading a PDF or e-Book
  • Making a purchase
  • Booking an appointment
  • Clicking on your email address

How Should You Track Conversions In Google Analytics?

You can choose to track your goals in Google Analytics in different ways.

You could track goals by:

  • Visits to specific URLs
  • Time spent on your website
  • Number of pages visited
  • Event tracking, such as clicks on buttons

The most useful type of goal to track is visits to specific URLs. This is because then you know they’ve taken the action you want them to take. Examples are a URL that appears after someone makes a purchase, a URL that appears after someone submits a form, or a URL that appears after someone downloads your PDF.

For this reason, you MUST create unique URLs, commonly called thank you URLs. This allows you to track visits to that URL as goals and then you have clear evidence of the action they’ve taken.

Time on site as a goal is far less valuable – we all know how easy it is to have a million browser tabs open and not be paying attention to any of them! Number of pages visited is much more useful as a metric, but nothing will beat tracking visits to specific URLs as tangible goals.

Are you tracking your conversions properly in Google Analytics?

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