How To Use Google Analytics Event Tracking To Grow Your Business

Google Analytics Event TrackingGoogle analytics event tracking is one of my
secret weapons.

It allows you to track anything on your site.

And shows you the highest converting:

  • Pages
  • Traffic sources

To help you optimize your site and increase your profits.

Best of all?

 It’s absolutely free.

Let’s take a closer look at how you can use Google Analytics event tracking to grow your business.

What Is Google Analytics Event Tracking?

Google Analytics event tracking shows you actions people take on your website.

These actions – which are called “goals” – are steps you want website visitors to take.

For example…

If you run an affiliate website you may want to track:

  • Email sign ups
  • Affiliate link clicks

…to see how frequently website visitors convert into subscribers or customers.

Or if you run an eCommerce site you might want to track:

  • Sales
  • Product views

…to see which pages and products convert best.

So take a moment to understand your goals to figure out which metrics to track.

Why Is Google Analytics Event Tracking Important?

Google Analytics event tracking allows you to identify:

  • Traffic sources
  • Campaigns

…that convert well so you can focus your energies there.

For example:

The event tracking data shows me…

If I want to increase affiliate clicks I should focus on tweaking these 2x pages because of the conversion rates-

high converting pages

AND:

If I wanted to bring high converting traffic to my site, I should focus on YouTube and Twitter (mostly YouTube) due to the conversion rates-

Event Tracking Data

The data can also show you where your effort is wasted.

Take a look at this data from one of my eCommerce clients:

Event Tracking Data for Client

You can see that social media traffic has zero conversions.

But:

  • CPC traffic
  • Organic search traffic

Convert at a much higher rate.

So if they want to make more money, they need to double down on those traffic sources and stop doing social.

 Using this data is a real no-brainer.

Because it’s free to use, there really is no excuse not to be doing it.

Here’s how to set it up…

10x Things You Can Track In Google Analytics

Google Analytics allows you to track:

Tracking Google Analytics

The number of these elements you’ll need to track will depend on your business.

So, how do you know what to track?

What Can You Track With Google Analytics?

To work out what you need to track with Google Analytics, take a look at:

  • Your current goals
  • The actions you want your user to take
  • The metrics to match them

And make a list of the most important things you’ll need to track.

This will vary from business to business.

Let’s take my blog as an example…

Example: Matthew Woodward’s Affiliate Website

The goal of any business is to increase income.

To do that in my case, I need users to:

  • Sign up to my mailing list
  • Download content upgrades
  • Click my affiliate links

To increase the chances they’ll buy.

This means I’d need to set all of these as trackable “goals” so I can see:

  • When
  • Where
  • How often

It happens.

Below is an example of how this looks for affiliate link clicks:

Mattew Woodward Affiliate Website

This information allows me to see if I’m achieving my goal.

But it also allows me to see which:

  • Pages perform well
  • Pages perform poorly
  • Offers perform well
  • Products users are interested in

To help me make informed decisions about my content, and adjust my strategy to increase conversions.

Okay, back to your site…

Take a couple of minutes to think about which elements are important to you.

You’ll likely need to be tracking some of the following:


Link clicks
  • Affiliate links
  • Internal links
  • Product placements
Conversions
  • Product purchases
  • Mailing list signups
  • Advert clicks
Downloads
  • Content upgrades
  • eBooks


Submissions
  • Contact forms
  • Surveys
  • Blog comments
Content
  • Pages read
  • Page scroll percentage
  • Bounce rate

How To Install Google Analytics The Right Way

You may already have Google Analytics but I’m going to show you how the pros do it…

Click this link to sign up for a free Google Analytics account.

Then:

Watch this video from the start to 01:50 to see how to do that:

 
Then we’ll look at how to configure each section…

How To Set Up Google Events Tracking

You can set up Google Analytics Event Tracking really easily…

Head to:

Tracking Code > Events Tracking

Inside your WordPress dashboard.

You should see a page like this:

Google Analytics Events Tracking 1

Now turn all of these tracking elements on:

Google Analytics Events Tracking 2

If you’re tracking affiliate links on your website, you’ll also need to set “Affiliates Regex” to match. (Regex is the most common term used in your affiliate links.)

For example, my affiliate links are all redirects which contain the term /get/:

So I’d update the box to reflect that:

Google Analytics Events Tracking Affiliates Regex

This will then notify Google Analytics that URLs containing this term are affiliate links.

Custom Dimensions Configuration

Go to the next tab,“Custom Dimensions”.

Dimensions are the characteristics of the metrics you’re going to track.

If you’re tracking affiliate clicks you may want to know:

  • Which authors write the most clicked posts?
  • Which categories generate the most clicks?
  • Which type of user clicks the most?

This gives you qualitative data like:

  • Author: Matt Woodward
  • Category: SEO
  • Users: returning

To inform future decisions.

On this page, assign a unique dimension to each of the available slots:

Google Analytics Custom Definitions

You’ll then see this reflected in your Google Analytics dashboard.

Exclude Tracking

Click the next tab, “Exclude Tracking”.

Select the boxes for admins and editors:

Google Analytics Exclude Tracking

This will exclude their metrics from your results.

Where Can You See The Events You Track?

You can see all of the events you track by going to:

Behaviour >Events

In you Google Analytics dashboard.

Google Analytics Dashboard Events Overview

You will then be able to choose from your:

  • Overview
  • Top events
  • Event pages
  • Event flows

To see the specific data you are looking for.

We will look at more specific events data you can see later in this guide.

How Long Do Events Take To Show In Google Analytics?

Google Analytics data can take up to 48 hours to show in your dashboard.

But if you go to:

Real-Time > Events

You can see what events are happening on your site right now.

eCommerce Configuration

If you’re an eCommerce site using WooCommerce, go to:

Integration > eCommerce

And select the “enhanced ecommerce plugin” from the drop-down menu:

Google Analytics eCommerce Configuration

Then install this plugin, and follow the configuration steps on the product page.

You’ll also need to setup eCommerce tracking in Google Analytic, which you can do using the instructions here.

How To Set And Track Goals In Google Analytics

You can set and track goals in Google Analytics by heading over to the Google Analytics website.

Then go to:

Google Analytics > Admin > Goals > New Goal

Here you can create a goal for anything.

These are the goals currently running on my blog:

Google Analytics Goals

Let’s look at how to set up the two you’re most likely to be running on your site:

  • Outbound links
  • Email sign ups

Example 1 – Affiliate Clicks

Let’s say you want to track an outbound link, like an affiliate link.

Here’s how to set this goal up:

Goal setup
  • Custom
Goal description
  • Set the name, “Affiliate Click”
  • Select the goal type as “Event”
Goal Details
  • Set the category to, “Affiliate”
  • Set the action to, “Click”
  • Leave label and value blank (this can be changed later)
  • Set the “Use the Event value as the Goal Value for the conversion” to “Yes”

This will now work with the plugin details you set up earlier to track link clicks.

It displays in your goals dashboard like this:

Google Analytics Goal Dashboard Affiliate Clicks

And your main Google Analytics dashboard like this:

Google Analytics Affiliate Clicks

Example 2 – Email Sign Ups

To set this goal:

Goal setup
  • Custom
Goal description
  • Set the name, “Email sign up”
  • Select the goal type as “Destination”
Goal Details
  • Enter the URL of your “thank you” page

This will then track users who end up on this page of your site.

It displays like this in your goals dashboard:

Google Analytics Goal Dashboard Blog Signups

And this in your main Google Analytics dashboard:

Google Analytics Blog Signups

Once you have these set up you can set up funnel tracking…

How To Set Up Funnel Tracking

Funnels are the way visitors move from the 1st page they visit through to a conversion.

The more efficient your funnel is, the more conversions you will make.

The more inefficient your funnel is, the fewer conversions you will make.

funnel tracking

This makes tracking funnels super important and they are easy to set up.

Once you start tracking you are able to see where traffic:

  • Comes from
  • Goes
  • Drops off

And improve your site to ensure more people make it from start to finish.

Here’s how to track this…

Funnel Tracking Report

Head to:

Conversions > Goals > Funnel Visualization

Then select your target goal from the drop down menu at the top of the page.

You’ll see a visualization of the funnel your traffic goes through to reach a conversion.

If I tracked the funnel for people who sign up to my mailing list through my Fiverr post.

It gives me this image:

Google Analytics Funnel Tracking Report

Here I can see the number of people who:

  • Entered my site at each stage
  • Left my site at each stage
  • Who flowed from stage to stage
  • The percentage of people who converted directly

This funnel clearly shows me that I need to improve how people move from my tutorials to my landing page.

If I can convince more of those 22,603 people to visit the landing page I’ll dramatically increase my conversions.

Being able to see this will help you to:

  • See the exact problems in your funnel
  • Update them
  • See the result of that change

Goal Flow Tracking

Each traffic source will enter your funnel at a different stage.

They should then (hopefully!) move from one stage to the next.

We call this the “Goal Flow”.

You can see your goal flow by going to:

Conversions > Goals > Goal Flow

And selecting your goal from the drop down menu.

For example:

I want all of my search traffic to enter at top-of-the-funnel content, like blog posts.

But my social media traffic can enter at a later stage, like a sign-up landing page.

And I want all of them to end up at my sign-up page:

Google Analytics Goal Flow Tracking

This visualization makes it easy to see:

  1. If all of my traffic enters at the right stage
  2. How people move from each section
  3. The conversion rates
  4. Areas for improvement

By looking at this for you own site you can optimize your website’s flows and create higher converting funnels.

Wrapping This Up…

Google analytics events tracking is a no-brainer.

It lets you see the key:

  • Traffic sources
  • Pages
  • Links

And gives you the data you need to create an informed traffic strategy for your website.

All you have to do to take advantage of this free tool is:

  • Connect your site to Google Analytics
  • Choose your ideal conversions
  • Set them as goals in the tool
  • Track your funnels and flows
  • Test and improve

If you have any questions about Google analytics event tracking, let me know in the comments!

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