A little over a year ago, Adpearance Co-Founder David Steinberg released a blog article titled, “How to Set up Google Analytics Event Tracking Correctly.” Here’s our follow-up for 2013.
As David mentioned in the blog post, event measurement and tracking comes down to two things: 1. What do you want to track? and 2. How are you going to organize it?
We have learned that a significant amount of valuable data can be gleaned without any event tracking whatsoever. However, there are often times when the number of page views or time spent on site just isn’t enough. We have found that event tracking is most valuable when the client has a website that lies somewhere in between an informational site and an ecommerce site.
For instance, you have a website that showcases a product or service, but the user is unable to purchase that particular product or services through the website. Examples of businesses that utilize these websites include auto dealerships, casinos, office print and copy suppliers, HVAC service and repair, and many others. The end goal that we would like to see a visitor complete on any of these sites would be one of the following: a form submission, a view inventory click, or something along the lines of “book a room” or “buy tickets,” which usually links to a third party provider. We call these Key Performance Indicators or KPI’s for short.
In order to provide value to the work we are doing here at Adpearance, we need to be able to report on these significant KPI’s. How do we do this? You guessed it—Event Tracking.
Next we have to decide how we are going to structure this information within analytics. It is important not only that we track the events taking place, but that it is easily readable for our clients and staff, as well as structured in a way that allows us to examine conversion rates, per-click and per-visit values. This, to our surprise, is a lot more difficult to obtain than one might imagine. This is due in part to the limited visibility that Google Analytics provides. As David mentioned, you’re only able to see two of the three event tracking components at one time.
In creating our framework for event tracking, we wanted to ensure that finding the conversion rate for an event was as seamless as possible. In order to achieve this, we now use the last segments of the URL of the page that the event occurred as our “Category,” the actual action that took place as the “Action,” and the component within the specific page where the event took place as the “Label” (see table below).
|Segment||What do we track?||Examples|
|Category||The last segment of the website URL||www.yoursite.com/this/segment/here|
|Action||The action that took place||Click, Download, Submit, Link, Play, Pause|
|Label||Where the event happened on the page (usually a button)||View Inventory, Get Directions, Submit Form, Book a Room, Buy Tickets, etc.|
By setting up the event tracking in this manner, we are able to view the Category (website URL) and the label (the event that took place) within the same window. By exporting this data into an Excel document, along with the site content table (website URL with unique page views), we are able to easily calculate the conversion rates for each event. Furthermore, the user does not have to set any advanced segments or secondary dimensions to see where a specific event took place.
We are also able to attach monetary values to these events, allowing for us to calculate per-visit values for visitors to the website across all mediums. This is an important metric that we use to determine the effectiveness of our services, as well as spot potential areas of growth for our clients.
For more information on any of the following, contact Adpearance today, and we’ll be sure to set your tracking straight.