As you may know, Google Analytics is a free tool that tracks traffic, conversions and tons of other valuable data about your website and its’ visitors. Even if you are using Google Analytics, you may also be running several marketing campaigns at once, and following which campaigns are reaching your goals, may be harder to track. Here are a few steps needed to make sure you can track your campaigns properly.
Set Up Your Goals in Google Analytics
Google Analytics allows you to set up goals, events and ecommerce tracking. Let’s understand what each of these terms mean.
Goals: Setting up a goal allows you to track specific user interactions on your website. It could be a button click, form submission, or download to name a few. Basically, you are tracking when the visitor performs a specific action. You need to define this action as a goal in Google Analytics. For example, one goal that a client of ours has, is defined every time someone fills out the form on their contact page. Since this is part of the set up, the client can open Google Analytics, filter by their selected data, and see how many people reached their goal.
Events: Events are used when you want to track how a user interacts with content. For example, you can set up an event for video plays, downloads, and clicks.
Ecommerce tracking: This offers the option to track revenue brought in from your website. If you have an ecommerce store or a non-profit, you can pull in and track revenue for donations.
So now that you have goals set up, you can see the outcome of your campaigns which will allow you to tweak strategies which will ultimately help your bottom line business.
If you are running several campaigns, you need to put a system in place to keep track of the campaigns. Working within a system will help you understand what each campaign is. It can also give you information about the channel used, creative, date and any information that is important to you. Once you have finalized your system, you will then build the URL’s with a free URL builder tool by Google, which is discussed below. A naming convention is also important because it keeps things consistent in Google Analytics. For example, if you list Facebook as a source, and sometimes you use a capital F and other times you do not, then Google Analytics will pull this in as 2 different sources. Once you set up your system, make sure it is in a place that is easily accessible so that you will actually use it.
Campaign URL Builder/ UTM Builder
Google has a free tool called Campaign URL Builder which essentially lets you create URL’s that can easily be tracked in Google Analytics. Since you already have a naming convention in place after you read the above, all you need to do is simply enter your data into the UTM Builder. The image below is filled out as an example, so you can see how it is done. The important thing is to keep it consistent whenever you are building a URL.
If you consistently use UTM’s or tracking links, then you will be able to easily follow your campaigns in Google Analytics. All you need to do is open Google Analytics and you will see a report that looks like the below image. Personally, I like using the channel report (Acquisition –> All Traffic –> Channels) because it gives you an overview based on default channels. If you refer to the image below, you can see that email marketing brought in X number of visitors and X revenue. If you want more information about your campaign, you need to drill down in Google Analytics, and sort by any of the dimensions found in the URL Builder. For example, I can search by campaign medium, source or any of the other metric.
Good luck understanding what you are getting from your marketing efforts and feel free to contact us if you need help setting this up.