How to Track Conversions: Know When a Visitor Engages With Your Site

By RRZEicons (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

Google Analytics has made it extremely simple to figure out statistics on your site – how effectively you are turning traffic into engagement, leads, and (if applicable) sales. The Web is virtual of course – this can make it difficult to perceive how successful your efforts are. But in the end, it’s just a matter of having the data at your fingertips, taking a look, and making adjustments to improve your conversion rate.

Google Analytics Goals – To Measure Your Progress, First … Know Your Destination

1.)    Sign up for Google Analytics. If you don’t yet have an Analytics account – Wait, you don’t have a Google Analytics account?! You haven’t lived! OK first get one of those – it will provide you a tracking code. You want that code on every page of your site. There is a turnaround time usually of less than 24 hours.

2.)    List the reasonable goals for your site. What exactly are you trying to do? What’s your secret agenda? You probably want something from people in exchange for the amazing and life-affirming experience they are having visiting your site. Is that any of the following?

  1. Getting them to call you?
  2. Having them sign up for your email or social media?
  3. Completing a contact form?

Phone calls can be tracked by having a number specific to your site; email signups can be tracked via Constant Contact or a similar service. Let’s focus on the contact form for now as a sample – because that relates directly to Google Analytics and will provide a sense of how to track for other types of conversions.

3.)    Set up Your First Google Analytics Goal. Here is a blow by blow of how to apply a goal you have on your list to conversion tracking using the tools in Google Analytics.

  1. In your Google Analytics account, click on the site you want to track.
  2. You should see an EDIT button on the right-hand side of your linked site name. Click it, and don’t look back. You’re growing stronger and more powerful by the moment.
  3. Scroll down the page until you see a section entitled GOALS. To the right you should see the option to add a goal. Do it.
  4. On the screen that populates, you will need to name the goal. Popular names include Penelope and Bruce, but you may want to name it something more to the point like Contact Form Signers. Make sure that your Goal Type is URL Destination (despite the most popular choice, Healthy Baby).
  5. For Thank You Page, select Exact Match under Match Type. Your Goal URL for this should be simply “/thank-you-very-much/” if the entire URL is http://www.incrediblewebsite.com/thank-you-very-much/.
  6. Finally, you can add the amount of your average sales on this page if you are, in fact, tracking sales and not contact information.
  7. Wait 24 hours, and (thanks to the spectacularly short gestation period of the Internet), Bruce will be born. I mean, your Goal statistics will start flowing in.

So that is it. Try one and see how it goes. If you have any questions, feel free to place a comment here, and I or one of the fine, upstanding ladies and gentlemen who work with me will reply.

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