5 Great Features of Google’s Enhanced E-Commerce Analytics

Are you struggling to measure the right conversion metrics and make sense of the different means to visualize funnels, goal -flows and visitor pathways? If you are not using Google’s Free Enhanced E-Commerce Analytic feature this article outlines what it is and how it can quickly help you increase your websites overall performance. Here is a look at what might be the 5 best features followed by a brief outline of how to set this up for your e-commerce website.

  1. Easy to Understand Sitewide Funnel Analysis
A Look at the Shopping Behavior Analysis Report

A Look at the Shopping Behavior Analysis Report

Google calls this powerful feature the Shopping Behavior Analysis Report and a quick glance at the report gives you a good picture of how the different layouts (templates) that make up your website are performing. Let’s assume we are working to optimize a typical e-commerce site consisting of several templates which include; informational pages, product list pages, product pages and the checkout process. Generally the goal of creating informational pages is to drive search traffic which after landing on the informational page should continue down the funnel to product listing pages and eventually the checkout process. If visitors are not getting to your product detail and product list pages they are not going to be buyers.  In a similar fashion the traffic hitting your product list pages should be navigating to the product detail pages. The Shopping Behavior Analysis Report gives us a great tool to quickly measure these key interactions in the buying funnel.

2 )  Product Level Performance Analysis
This report provides data at the specific product level.  Some of the data includes how many times a product was viewed, how many times it was placed in the shopping cart, number of sales, and even how many times it was removed from the shopping cart. Furthermore you can examine and sort conversion rates on individual products based on the number of sales to product views. The ability to measure and sort “Shopping Cart Actions” at the product level can help you identify products with hidden potential. As an example trying a quick sort on those products that were added and removed frequently from the shopping cart but did not sell for whatever reason.

3)  Product List Page Performance Analysis

Typical Product Listings on a Category Page

Typical Product Listings on a Category Page

Almost every e-commerce site organizes products into categories or lists. You can specifically tag your products with the correct analytics code so as to associate them with specific lists and even tag the position products are ordered in the list. The ability to examine analytic data at the list level can help you to quickly eliminate or update non-performing products. It can also be used to quickly identify the top performing products in a list in terms of CTR which might motivate you to reorder your products within the list especially if you have categories where pagination is hiding some of your top performers.

 4)   Checkout Funnel Analysis
When it comes to optimization practices one of the first places professional optimizers will look at is the checkout funnel.  It can be assumed that the majority of those placing an item in the shopping cart are looking to buy it. Unusually, high drop-off during the checkout process can highlight trouble spots during the checkout process. Enhanced E-Commerce Analytics allows you to tag each step in the checkout process and then view the aggregate as a funnel so you can quickly identify the specific steps with the highest drop-off and attempt to fix them.

5)    Analysis of Internal Promotions
If you internally promote specific pages via banners the new Enhanced Analytics now gives you the ability to measure how effective those promotions are.  This might be useful for instance if you have a blog where you place banner advisements related to products pages or list in order to drive sales. Reports give you the ability to track the number of views, clicks and CTR.

One of the best things about all the features is the ability to further dissect the data by device, browser, geography and a number of other variables.  This is really the next step in e-commerce analytics and outside of Google Analytics I don’t believe any other free product offers as much for as little. If you need some help setting up and tagging your site for Enhanced Analytics just drop me an email.

If you are running a custom built e-commerce site and want to get Enhanced Analytics up and working you need to do a little work and correctly tag products, product list pages and so forth on your website before the data can show up in Google Analytics. Google gives you a lot of power to tag things correctly and you can even create custom dimensions for product variants like color or shape according to your needs.  If you are running an online shop that is powered by Magento (free), Shopify (paid), PrestaShop (free) you can easily install the pre-built apps made available by these providers to get up and running quickly.

About David Urmann

David Urmann is an entrepreneur and avid traveler. He keeps an authoritative expertise on many subjects including SEO, SEM, UI/UX Optimization. An avid traveler and a guide book writer Dr. Urmann is the founder of Touristlink.com one of the world's most active social travel networks.