Do you have pages on your site that users may try to print? For example, retail companies with brick-and-morter stores may be interested in knowing if users are printing out product details, coupons, or directions pages. Or publishers may want to know if users are printing their articles.
This can all be tracked with event tracking in Google Analytics. It requires some code (provided below) which is easy to implement in Google Tag Manager in about 10 minutes. Seriously.
Do you know how people are completing forms on your site? Are there certain fields that get skipped frequently or that cause users to drop off?
Almost two years ago, I wrote a post showing how to use a simple script to track form abandonment in Google Analytics with event tracking. I’ve gotten a lot of great user feedback (and requests) about that script, and wanted to share an updated version that is a little more elegant.
This new version more effectively handles fields that are completed or skipped. I’ve also modified this script and included instructions for how to add it to your site through Google Tag Manager.
Use this script to see which fields get the most completions, but also use it to compare to the amount of forms that get submitted successfully. If you find that people are starting to complete the form but failing to submit it, you may need to look into ways to improve the user experience.
You just optimized the main navigation on your site to make it easier for users to find the more “popular” pages. But did the changes do the trick? Did they improve the user experience? Your boss is breathing down your neck to get answers to these questions.
The Navigation Summary report in Google Analytics. This is a little-known report, tucked away in the Behavior > Site Content > All Pages report.
The Navigation Summary report is perfect for this type of analysis. It lets you choose a page (e.g. the homepage), and will show you the previous page a user was on before getting to that page, and the next page they went to. For example, we can focus on the homepage, and see where our users went next. (more…)
UTM campaign parameters. We love them. We hate them.
They make it easy to track both online and offline marketing efforts. But they aren’t very pretty to look at, and they’re difficult to implement reliably, especially for a layperson (i.e. non-technical person).
Often, there’s a situation where we want to track a number of different approaches or people contributing to a campaign. Imagine the pushback you’ll get when you suggest each person modifies their UTM parameters to personally identify themselves or the approach they’re using.
Fortunately, there’s an easier way to track certain types of activities without having to resort to including all those UTM parameters. We can use a simple URL hash and some Google Tag Manager magic to uniquely identify each person.
Do you want to track your press releases or distributed content (widgets, infographics, embedded content, etc.)? I’m going to show you a much better way to do that with campaign tracking in Google Analytics.
I was recently asked a question by an attendee to our Google Analytics training in Los Angeles about using campaign tracking in Google Analytics:
We distribute press releases that get distributed and posted on various websites. I want to be able to track any traffic generated by those pickups as part of a campaign, but also know from which sites the traffic is coming. What happens is I simply leave utm_source out?
First there was the honorable GoalCopy plugin for Firefox, which ruled the kingdom for many (internet) years. This tool gave you the magical ability to copy goals from one profile (remember when that’s what they were called?) to another with ease. And the peasants rejoiced.
But then came v5 of Google Analytics, and with this new design the failings of the old king. GoalCopy was dethroned by it’s Chrome extension cousin, GA Copy and Paste. It was visusally appealing and worked in the new interface. And the peasants rejoiced.
GA Copy and Paste met with its untimely demise when Google Analytics rolled out changes to the Admin, including Goals configuration. The Kingdom fell into chaos, with no ability to copy goals from one View to another. Until now.
Now we have learned of a noble warrior with a true bloodline, claiming the throne. This new leader calls itself by no name, it just sits there ready to copy your goals at a moments notice, either one at a time or in bulk.
You don’t have to download it. It isn’t browser specific. It’s a new feature in Google Analytics.
You can now share your goals. (more…)
What do you do if you need to use Google Analytics, but you have a broken hand (or two)?
This is the problem we were faced with last year, as two of our analysts were involved in separate bicycle accidents. Using a mouse and keyboard to navigate the reports in Google Analytics proved difficult, if not impossible, with hunks of plaster covering our hands and fingers. (more…)
Cross-domain tracking has been the bane of any analyst’s experience for, oh, just about ever. It is probably the hardest thing to get right in a Google Analytics implementation, and in our experience, more people ask us for help with this one issue than any other.
Over the years we’ve dealt with this problem in different ways. jQuery made it easy to drop in a couple lines of code to track behavior across domains, but even then it wasn’t exactly automatic.
Then along came Universal Analytics and Google Tag Manager – the perfect 1-2 punch combo to knock out cross domain tracking once and for all. We held a webinar to show people step-by-step how to implement cross-domain tracking in Google Tag Manager. Below is a recording of the webinar, along with the written step-by-step instructions.
UPDATE: Due to events beyond our control, the webinar has been postponed until Tuesday, November 5th at 1:00pm EST. Our sincere apologies.
It’s been almost a year since Google Tag Manager was introduced, and as we scan the product forum, it’s clear there are still many questions about how it works (both generally and specifically). (more…)
UPDATE: July 30, 2014 – Google announced a feature to automatically filter out bots and spiders. Learn more here.
Don’t let bad data crash your analytics party.
One of the benefits of client-side, tag-based analytics (as opposed to server side analytics) is that you generally don’t have to filter out traffic from bots.
However, it seems lately that some bots (*cough, cough* Microsoft) have been showing up in Google Analytics like an uninvited guest, crashing the data party. (more…)