The best thing about Analytics is also the worst thing about Analytics. If utilized correctly, Analytics can open up a whole new world of possibilities within your accounts. On the other hand, trying to digest all of the different facets and capabilities can be a difficult and time-consuming process. This is why we decided to host the Analytics Test Lab this month in order to reveal its’ true power. For the purpose of this lab, we will review the basics of goal tracking in Analytics and then discuss some of the methods that I have found to be particularly useful.

Goal Conversion Tracking Basics

Essentially, Analytics uses the concept of goals to help evaluate the actions users take when visiting a website. Goals can include email signups, ecommerce purchases, PDF downloads and more. For example, I might create a goal that tracks the users who sign up for my email list. You can also specify a sequence of actions, known as a goal funnel, which can be useful in analyzing the flow of traffic towards an ultimate objective. Let’s say that my checkout process spans multiple pages; I might create a goal funnel for that.

Goals and Goal Funnels are beneficial in a variety of ways and allow you to:

  • Create up to 20 goals per account and view them individually
  • Track URL Durations, Visit Durations, Pages/Visit and Events
  • Specify dollar amounts that are attributed to each goal conversion

Although this isn’t a definitive list, you can see that Analytics goal conversion tracking is powerful and has a significant advantage over AdWords conversion tracking because of the robust detail it provides. However, there’s nothing wrong with using Analytics goal and AdWords conversion tracking in tandem.

Three Ways to Use Analytics for Improving Lead Generation

1. Set up goal conversion funnels to gain insight on how to improve drop-off rates.

This is a feature I’ve found to be incredibly useful with my clients because Analytics allows you to determine if there are any snags in your checkout or conversion process. One of the best parts about this feature is the funnel visualization option shown above, which makes the data even easier to digest.

For example, I’m working with a client in the photography vertical who has a series 3 pages in their lead generation process. After setting up a goal funnel to track the movement from page to page, I noticed that our visitors entered the funnel properly, but dropped off significantly after they reached the sign-up form. This was obviously a problem, but the goal funnel allowed us to show the client concrete data about the problem and do something about it. We ended up revising the landing page form and saw instant improvement in our drop-off rates.

2. View revenue data at the keyword-level to optimize conversion value.

This is another feature that can be incredibly helpful, especially for Ecommerce advertisers. With Analytics reporting, you can track sales and revenue data at the keyword-level. My favorite aspects of this feature include the ability to link your AdWords keywords and determine exactly which keywords are the most profitable for your business.

For example, I have an Ecommerce client in the men’s clothing vertical who wants to increase online sales. Thanks to Analytics revenue tracking capabilities, I can analyze my keywords based on revenue and optimize against that information. Let’s say that I generate one sale for a lapel pin and one for a tuxedo, for a total of two conversions. If I only take the total number of conversions into account, I would be missing out because I’m not considering the revenue values behind each of the conversion. As you might imagine, a tuxedo would generate a lot more revenue for my business compared to a lapel pin. Having access to the data enables you to determine your most profitable keywords and optimize them accordingly, which can ultimately improve the overall value of your conversions.

3. Set up multi-channel funnels to see how your marketing channels collaborate.

This is yet another benefit of using Analytics to improve conversions/leads because it allows you to see how channels interact along your conversion paths. Channels can include paid and organic searches for all search engines, referral sites, affiliates, social networks, email newsletters and more. What’s better is how Analytics compiles this data in an easy to digest format shown above. By looking at this data, you may find repeated patterns that can provide insights on how to improve conversions and revenue across several marketing channels.

I might start by looking at the top conversion paths report in order to determine which sequences of channel interactions generated the highest number of sales and revenue for my business. For example, if a significant number of users eventually convert after viewing our email newsletter, I could then make the decision to increase the quality or quantity of my newsletters in order to help drive more conversions. Analytics also provides information about assisted conversions as well, which can help attribute additional value to PPC.

Although we only discussed a few of the ways to utilize Analytics for lead generation, the tracking and analysis capabilities of this tool are seemingly endless. In fact, I would love to hear some of the other ways you use Analytics to increase conversions and leads for your business or client(s) by leaving a comment below. Stay tuned for Sarah’s post on Analytics for Ecommerce coming soon, thanks for reading!