This is the 17th lesson video from my course The Exact Process For Setting Up Google Analytics – https://www.thequantifiedweb.com/exactga.
I decided to post the videos from the lessons publicly, but I encourage you to log into the course because from within the course you can access the written notes and the checklists, plus access my special offer. The course is completely free to register 🙂
Every Google Analytics view should have at least one goal set up so that you can measure the effectiveness of different campaigns, pages etc. Rather than just considering how many page views you have, it is worthwhile identifying if those page views led to a business result, or at least a visitor moving further up your sales funnel, from a “cold” lead into a person who knows you and trusts you that little bit more. Maybe even enough to do business with you now or in the future.
Setting up goals is usually quite customised, but you can add these two engagement goals, even if you don’t have anything set up in your Google Analytics yet. We usually add them as part of our standard install unless a user is already tracking quite a few goals and doesn’t need any more.
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Welcome to Lesson Seventeen in the Exact Process for Setting Up Google Analytics with The Quantified Web. Now, to get this lesson you will want to go to www.thequantifiedweb.com/exactga and type in your email address and then click Get Started Today.
Now, we are quite a few lessons in so we want to scroll all the way down and today we are going to do — where is it? where is it? — Create Standard Goals, that’s what we’re about to do. So we’re going to click on here’s how to do it. Here we go.
Please read this important note. Now, I was actually talking about this in the last lesson. So we prefer goals that are triggered by someone actually doing something on the website. So think about goals as tracking whether someone achieved what you had set out for them. So if you want them to subscribe for a newsletter then you want to be tracking did they achieve your goal of subscribing to a newsletter. You want them to add to the cart, you want that to be a goal. If you want them to search for something then you want that as a goal.
But all of these things where you’re doing something, they are completely customized — actually no, I didn’t go through this in the last lesson. I was talking about events — but they are completely customized to your website because your website is different from someone else’s website both in terms of its intent but also in terms of its setup.
So part of what my business does is I will look at your website and I will go through and say, “Right, well these buttons need to be set up as goals, this cart needs to be set up. This is how we do it.” And then I will set all that up so you do have accurate goals. But when you set up Google Analytics for the first time you don’t have any goals in there. It’s just blank by default.
So as part of the standard set up, my team and I don’t set up the goals other than we have two standard goals which are based on how many pages people look at and how long they spend on your website. We don’t set up any of these behaviour goals in this initial set up because we actually do a, work out a data strategy plan, work out what kinds of goals we actually need across the website and then we customize that as part of an analytics project.
So just to make that understood that we’re not going to go through in this step the setting up of all of the goals and in fact, this isn’t going to be the most useful goals but we are at least getting something in there because Google Analytics doesn’t work very well if you don’t have any goals at all. All of the metrics relating to conversion rate do need to check whether people achieved a goal or not.
So at the very minimum, you want to have goals relating to how long someone’s spent on your website or how many pages they looked at so that you can see what is the conversion rate of people coming to your website from being a brand new person that is or is not interested in your website to someone who’s actually engaged and spending time.
So definitely better to — the best thing that you can have is different goals for all the different conversions you have on your website. We’ve got major conversions and then we’ve got micro-conversions which are the small steps that you want them to take but at the very minimum, you want to check whether they are engaging on your website or not so that your conversion rates are at least reporting on something. Otherwise, your conversion rates will be showing zero through all of Google Analytics and it might not even display that column at all because you don’t have any goals.
Alright, so now, I’ve just got a note in here as well. If you already have all of these behaviour goals then you might not want to set up the standard ones because you might be running out of space. So Google Analytics allows 20 goals per view. Now, if you have a general mass website that had a lot of things we wanted to check, what we might end up doing is setting up more than one reporting view so that you can have 20 goals per reporting view. We can just duplicate the same reporting view and have, you know, another 20 goals.
But generally, I mean that adds complexity because then you have to work out which view your goal is in. So generally, you want to have less than 20 goals. If you’ve really got lots of goals and you’re already up to you know 19 or 20 goals then don’t worry about setting up these basic ones because you’ve already got goals in there.
If you do have some goals in there that are all done and they’re not working anymore then feel free to either disable them or you convert those goals into these ones. You both rename them and you can change the settings. Just keep in mind that if they were active and they were tracking goals then suddenly changing it means that if you try and look back historically, it will show you data for the previous goal because the goal ID is like a slot in Google Analytics and if you ask, “How many did I get in this slot?” It will all show you how many people completed the goal or how many sessions there were when that goal was completed. Irrespective of what settings were of that goal.
So to recap on that, it’s best to add it into a new slot if you can but if you’re full then either skip this lesson or replace one that is old and maybe not working anymore. Hopefully, that makes sense.
Alright, so the first thing we want to do is go to Admin and now I always do it in the Filtered Data No Params first. So I haven’t actually mentioned that in here but that’s where I recommend. And we open up the goals in the Admin panel, yes. So I’m actually already in there but I’ll just walk through how to get there.
So we go to Admin and then click on Goals and then we find out Goals. Now, in this case, I did tell you that I had just — in the previous lesson I told you that I’ve completely made these goals up. This client didn’t actually have any goals so I’m going to override these goals with the two new ones that we’re going through here. But in your case, if you have goals already don’t override them, just create new ones.
Alrighty, so you will want to click this New Goal button and you’ll get here and then you will want to click on Custom and then click Continue. All right. But what I’m going to do, I’m just going to go back. I’m just going to edit the one that I already set up because this one isn’t, this one isn’t good.
Alright, so now if I go back to here then I’m on the same page as where you are. Alright, so we’ve got Custom, Continue then it will take you to this page and we want to enter Visit > 1 minute in the Name box. So this is going to let us know what percentage of our users stayed for longer than a minute. Now, you can have a different time in there if you would like but I tend to have this one as a default because if someone is really not interested you will definitely know. They’re not going to stay for a minute. Once they’ve been in there for longer than a minute then it shows that they definitely engaged to some degree.
Alrighty, so in this one, we want to choose Destination, sorry ignore that, we want to choose Duration. Things starting with D and then click Continue. Alrighty, so this is a Duration one. We’re going to set the Duration to Greater than 1 Minute. Alrighty, now don’t worry about the Value for this engagement goal. The value is useful when you have some goals that lead to monetary return but someone’s spending more than a minute on your website is unlikely to lead directly to monetary value so don’t worry about that. Alright, let me just save this one.
Alright, then — now, I’m going to edit this one but you’re going to click New Goal again. So then you do New Goal and you’ll get to this page. I’m just going to edit this one. Alright, so you will be on this page here. We click on Continue and you will now be on this page and we want to call that Visit 3+ Pages. So this one I also have as a standard because if someone has viewed 3 or more pages then users pretty came in you’ll have a reasonable percentage of your visitors will stay for less than a minute and will only look at one page.
So if they’re looking at 2 pages that’s pretty good, if they’re looking at 3 or more pages that they actually pretty came. So we want to do greater than two to get three or more. Greater than two. Alright, again skip the value and click Save. Alright, so that’s quite a short one.
Now, I strongly recommend having these goals filled out based on what’s actually on your website. So how about I’ll just give you an example of what the type of detail that you really should have in your goals.
So let’s go to — actually, let’s, let’s look at this page here. Alright, so let’s go back to where we were. Now, if I was setting up analytics for this, first of all, I would want to know the conversion rate of people clicking on this button. So and then there’s a couple of options you’ve got. So you could have — say people could click on that button but they haven’t inputted anything. So you can have people that are clicking on the button but then you can also have valid submit and I quite often track both because sometimes clients want to know particularly — look, not so much for a form like this but if you have a form that has lots of different steps, they’re asking for phone number and then asking for an address and they’re asking for messages and details and all that type of thing. You’re going to have some percentage of people will fill out some of that and then they’ll get an error saying you know, they’ve missed out one of the required fields and they will leave.
So when I see that I like to have one goal for clicking on the buttons. Just, just clicking on it and one for validly submitting the form. Alright, so let’s look up to my email on there, no, that’s the old one. To the new email address. Alright, so then I would want to track a valid submission of the form.
Now, if I was tracking this then one thing that would be interesting to see would be people clicking on the tabs to open lessons so we can find out what the interaction rate is on different lessons. Now, another thing that I like to track is the interaction rate overall. So I will set up a little — basically, what it does is it’s tracking mouse movements and it’s tracking — oh you’ve got like me and me, this is weird — it will be tracking mouse movements and it will be tracking scrolling and every fifteen seconds it says alright if someone’s still active and if they’re still active then it just marks them as engaged and then I’ll track different engagement levels in there as well.
Another thing that we might want to track is whether someone clicked the video. I’m not going to click on that because that’s just going to be weirder if I’m talking and I’m talking, that’s going to be strange. But if someone’s clicking on videos and watching videos you can actually track them on the YouTube videos.
I might want to track someone searching. I might want to track if someone emailing support or they’re clicking through to my Home page. So all of those different things are trackable and what we would want to do for all of those things are set them up as separate goals and then where you are — so there are different ways that you can use that but basically, to be honest, I spent a lot of time looking at Events, which aren’t a big part of this course but when you do have events coming through — I think this particular client does have some events you can — I usually actually export all the data out of Google Analytics and put it in Data Studio so maybe that’s not the best example.
But actually, alright, let’s just do Acquisition because I know that Acquisition has the conversion rates straight in there. Alright, so we’ve got e-commerce and the standard one but any of the individual goals can be adjusted in here to see the actual conversion rates.
Now, there’s a lot more that you can do with goals than that, excuse me, I’m losing my voice. I usually convert different goals into dashboards and reports showing Progress Part Plans or All Sales Part Plans so that you can actually see the progress of that goal and it’s also really useful to look at goal conversion based on different segments of traffic in your Analytics as well.
So all of that is a bit more advanced. We’re not going to be going through in this course but certainly having the goals in there is the first step before you can actually start to see what is and isn’t effective. Definitely things like purchasing or booking or like those really macro goals, you want to have them in here otherwise you won’t know — so if you have like Google Ads, for example, you won’t know which campaigns are leading to the actual conversions if you don’t have conversions, if you don’t have goals. And typically what you would do is you’d set up the goals in here and then you’d input them in Google Ads so that then you can make sure that your Google Ads are more optimized based on what people are actually doing. You don’t want to just have ads just for the sake of it. You want to get an actual business benefit from them.
Yes, so if you have any questions for me about Google Ads or any of these things just give me a hoy. Alrighty, well I think we have gone through — where did we go to, Create Standard Goals, yes. So the next one we’re going, the next lesson we’re going to go through is copying those goals we just created to another view because sometimes you might want to see them in other views even if you’re only using the one view if you’re reporting and then the next one is a more advanced topic just for e-commerce so we’ll go through that shortly.
Alrighty, well hopefully that helped you learn about goals. I will see you in the next lesson.
If you liked this video and want to find the next one, look out for the article How To Copy Goals to Another View in Google Analytics. This next video shows you how to share the goals you’ve set up with all the other views that you have. This is very helpful if you add new goals and you have more than one view in Google Analytics. It can be quite time consuming adding new goals manually!