Do you have an e-Commerce website? If you do, you're most likely using a web analytics tool to gather actionable insight from your current customers. Beyond straight sales numbers, I use the various e-Commerce reports within the Google Analytics interface to determine where our customers are coming from and what marketing campaigns are paying off. I'm going to go through a method I use to help track these items.
But, first, if you are brand new to the idea of tracking Ecommerce on your website, I highly recommend using Google Analytics. It's free and pretty easy to navigate. The setup can be a little confusing, but Google provides a great help article with all of your instructions.
The first step in successful tracking of what marketing campaigns are driving the most sales is setting up a custom campaign. Basically, you want to tag your links so that we can see which campaigns are bringing your site visitors, and in turn, sales. Google has developed their URL builder, which makes this pretty easy. For example, here is what a URL might look like for a newsletter we're sending out: http://www.webucator.com/go/course-of-the-month/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=webuNewsOct12
Of important note, look at the campaign variable, webuNewsOct12. Now, we can track how many sales were a result of this campaign.
e-Commerce Overview Report
Once logged into your Google Analytics account, you can navigate over to Conversions > Ecommerce > Overview > Source/Medium. As seen on the attached screenshot, you can see that our newsletter campaigns were our fifth biggest source of sales in the given time period. (Please note that most of the information is blurred out for privacy reasons, but you can still see the main point.)
This general report will give you that high-level perspective of which sources/mediums are helping your business grow. And again, tied back to the campaign variables you determined in the step above. Maybe you also see a source/medium you didn't know about? :)
e-Commerce Product Performance
After viewing the Overview report, you might want to tie specific product sales to specific campaigns you are running. Right underneath that Overview report, you'll see the Product Performance report. Now this report will be tied to how you setup your initial e-Commerce tracking code on your site, and will show specific products that were purchased.
To add in a level of campaigns, head over to the specific category group you're interested in, and then click on the Secondary dimension tab. Under the Advertising group, you'll see your Campaign option. Take a look at the screenshot below:
I sorted the campaigns in alphabetical order and now I can see exactly what products visitors purchased from exactly which campaigns I started. This is a great avenue to see if there are any ways to either optimize current campaigns or start focusing your product messaging on different campaigns!
Lastly, one very quick note on campaigns. If you are ever curious to which campaigns are simply bringing you the most traffic (after you've tagged your links), navigate over to Traffic Sources > Sources > Campaigns. This will give you a combined report of any AdWords campaigns you might be running coupled with any manual campaigns you setup with the URL builder.
And that's a wrap for this article! I hope you learned a few, new actionable steps for your Google Analytics account. If you have any questions on these steps, please leave them in the comments below and I'll get to them. And stay tuned for another Google Analytics blog coming up next month! Happy Analytics!
Editor's Note: Bob provides a great foundation for getting started with Google Analytics in his Google Analytics series.