Archive for the ‘Google Tag Manager’ Category
Not All Bounces are Created Equal
Interaction Events and Bounce Rate
The great customizability of Google Analytics implementations can at times be a double-edged sword. We are living in the golden age of analytics and we of course we want to collect as much metadata associated with our traffic as possible. The caveat is that, with each added layer of complexity to our GA tracking, we must ensure consistency across our website. We must be especially careful that our KPIs are comparable for cross-sectional and longitudinal analysis. (more…)
Some day, even after diligently testing, you may publish a new version of your Google Tag Manager container and disaster will strike. The site, or some critical site function, will break. Or tracking will drop to zero. (Or both!) Will you be ready to fix things?
It’s as easy as “the click of a button” to revert to a previous, working version of your tag container, according to many articles about Google Tag Manager. What most of these articles do not say is which button to choose.
Yes, there’s more than one way to restore a previous version. (more…)
Today we are going to go on a quest to find the scientifically-proven best blog post ever. We will do so with math.
We have a hypothesis: the best blog post ever must contain these five things:
A handful of tasteful images
A YouTube video
A length between 1200 and 1500 words
A concise title
Published on a Friday
And there was much rejoicing.
My reaction to the GWT New Year’s Update
I couldn’t believe it when I saw the January 7, 2014th Webmaster Tools update,
“data in the search queries feature will no longer be rounded / bucketed.”
At first I thought, why would Google go through all that trouble to obfuscate keyword data in Google Analytics, when they planned on handing all that data back through the search query reports in Webmaster Tools? And of course, they didn’t plan on anything of the sort. The relatively minor update only removes bucketing, and does not address the big issue, that they display only 20% to 25% of search query data. I held out hope that, as it appears in the before and after pictures, the sampling rate had been increased from around 20% to around 35%. But while I’ve noticed small changes in some accounts, it does not appear they’ve made this improvement. (more…)
Unfortunately, this post won’t work for payphones.
Sometimes when dealing with a website, it’s easy to throw on the classic tracking events – PDFS, mailto links, etc… But what if we wanted to track when people clicked on our phone links? In a perfect world, this should be easy. However, phone numbers can be written in many, many different ways and we don’t always have control over the content to add in appropriate phone tags. As if that’s not enough, dealing with different browsers on different devices supremely complicates the matter.
Sometimes Tag Manager is so easy it feels like cheating. In a good way. Like getting a super acorn power-up and turning into Flying Squirrel Mario.
Recently I used my flying squirrel powers to beat the dynamic content boss. My client wanted to track how visitors used a couple different search forms, each with multiple options. Every time an option was selected, new search results would appear dynamically and a parameter would be added to the URL hash.
For example, if the visitor chose to view all the seminars on day 1, the URL would become /seminarsearch#day=1. Search those seminars by topic X and the URL would change to /seminarsearch#day=1&topic=x.
Or it might be a different search form, say for vendors, and the URL might look like /vendorsearch#category=abc&location=bldg2.
How was I going to tackle all those moving parts and get the data I needed into Google Analytics? I wrote a couple different pieces of code that were unsatisfactory for one reason or another.
And then I found my super acorn. (more…)
This has been a big year for keyword (not provided). It has become more difficult than ever to gauge the success of SEO campaigns. That single term is now showing for over 95% of LunaMetrics.com’s organic search traffic! Yikes!
Our SEO team has been hard at work finding ways to get back some of that keyword data, through Webmaster Tools, AdWords, and some fancy mathetmatizing. Reid Bandremer blogged about some ways to combat (not provided) in a post in October.
But what if we could do even better? Rather than focusing on a user’s search term, what if we could see, on a page-by-page basis inside Google Analytics, exactly which keywords we optimized those pages for? Then we’d be able to see which of our actual SEO keywords are performing best, using metrics like conversions, bounce rates, time-on-page, etc.
The following is a way to get optimized keyword data inside Google Analytics, across your entire website, using Google Tag Manager.
Regular Expressions: The Gift That
Keeps on Giving( and Giving)*!
When I came to LunaMetrics, I had never really used regular expressions. I had heard about them, knew they were important, but couldn’t give you one concrete use. “Learn regular expressions!” they said, so learn regular expressions is what I did, still unsure of how or why these would be useful. There were examples online, people talking about Advanced Segments or Custom Filters, but how can you begin to understand these concepts until you actually need to use them? It was only after I began taking on clients and working with Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager that I was able to try out my newfound skills and truly become a convert.
Yet still, I couldn’t help but think that there must be a better way to introduce regular expressions (we’ll call them regex from here on) to complete newcomers. There are plenty of resources out there, which I’ll link to. I’m not going to recreate all of the basic instructions, but I’m going to give examples that I would have found useful when beginning my regex journey.
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.
Here’s a trick to capture additional information from transactions using Google Tag Manager. Let’s say you have several product categories on your site, and you want to easily see how different combinations sell on the site.
1: Create a Custom Dimension named “Transaction Categories”