What are Goals?
Goals allow you to tell Google Analytics when something important has happened on your website, usually a purchase or email signup. If you have a website where you generate leads through a contact form, you will want to find (or create) a thank you page that visitors end up on once they have submitted their contact information. If you have a website where you sell products, you will want to find (or create) a final thank you or confirmation page for visitors to land upon once they have completed a purchase.
Let’s say your ultimate goal is to get the user to sign up for a service on your site. The only way for you to know when they have signed up is when they have reached the “Thank You” page. Google will track every-time a user reaches that page, and will show you what source they came from and the path they took on your site before their reached the “Thank You” page.
Goals fall into one of four types, listed below...
- Destination: A specific location loads (Thank you for registering!)
- Duration: Sessions that lasts a specific amount of time or longer (10 minutes or longer spent on site)
- Pages/Screens per session: A user views a specific number of pages or screens (5 pages or screens have been loaded)
- Event: An action defined as an event is triggered (social recommendation, video play, ad click)
Within the admin section of your Google Analytics account, you will see the tab for goals. Your first step will be to setup your goal. Google has the below as pre-set options for you to choose from, primarily Destination and Event goal types. If none of the below apply to your goal, then simply create a custom goal and Google will walk you through the simple steps to do so.
- Reservations: Signed up for a tour, rental or reservation
- Make a payment: Completed online payment
- Make an appointment: Scheduled a visitor or meeting
- Become a partner: Requested or submitted partner, affiliate or dealer information
Create an account: Successful sign up, account or view created
View more: Viewed product or service details
Contact us: Viewed phone number, directions, chat or email
Get estimate: Requested price or time estimate
See available: Checked inventory or schedule
Find a location: Viewed located or dealer information
Media play: Played interactive media, like a video, slideshow or product demo
You can create up to 20 different goals on your website, allowing you to track similar goals and conversions for all aspects of your business. Be sure that the goals you create are highly important to your business, you don’t want to waste your time and your finite number of goals tracking something that doesn’t move the needle for your company. These goals, for most businesses, will include lead form submissions, email list sign ups, and purchase completions. Obviously, depending on your website and its purpose, your goals may vary.
Goals are important, but this only scratches the surface on what you need to know in order to use Google Analytics to its full potential. To keep learning, choose one of our other sections on Google Analytics and what it offers the businesses of today below.