Module 2. Quantitative research. Third-party analytics. Now that we've taken a look at our Shopify analytics, we're starting to develop some theories about some of the issues on our store that might be affecting conversions. We'll want to delve deeper into other analytics available to track how customers are getting to our site and what they're doing when they get there. The next 30 questions will cover how to look at Google Analytics and other third-party tools. Analytics tools show us what customers are doing, the impact of your widgets, features, apps, plugins, and pages, and where your store is leaking money.
We still won't know why until we get to module 3, which is heuristic and qualitative research. Setting up Google Analytics is easy and Shopify offers a number of great tutorials that you can find on the bottom of this page. The basics are get a Google account, any Gmail account, create a Google Analytics account using your Gmail account, and complete the steps to get the tracking ID and global site tag. You'll be presented with this as part of the setup.
Copy the code you see, and head over to Shopify. In your online store preferences section on Shopify, scroll down until you see the Google Analytics section, and paste your global site tag into the field Google Analytics account. How do you know if it's enabled? As soon as you have pasted the code, you'll see a code that starts with ua under your Google Analytics account heading on Shopify. Quick tip-- always check the Enhanced e-commerce box.
And note that you won't see any visitors showing up in your GA Dashboard while you still have a password protection enabled on your online store. The next 30 questions about conversion rate data assume that you have had GA installed for a few months and are able to see the user engagement data in your GA account. Be warned. Data can lie. In module 1, we looked at averages, ratios, and percentages.
We looked at the basics of where groups of potential customers are coming from and where in the conversion funnel they leave. These are vanity metrics. They don't tell the whole story and don't really answer that many questions. Having the questions ready first is key to interpreting the data. Question 1, what do you want to know? Question 2, what are you going to do when you get the answer? If you're not going to do anything based on the data, then you don't need to pay attention to it.
Let's get started in GA. Navigate to Acquisition, All Traffic, Channels, and set the date range. And compare dates to the same dates you are measuring in your Shopify analytics. To check that your GA is set up correctly, your e-commerce conversion rate should be exactly the same in Shopify Analytics as in Google Analytics. Question 3, are there any spikes in traffic to your store? That spike needs to be attributed to something-- a marketing campaign, a good PR piece.
You want to discount spikes from your data set, as they don't tell an accurate story about your usual conversion rate. In this case, we can see that even with our spike in traffic, we are still performing poorly against our previous period. Something must be up. Question 4, how much traffic came to the website? Question 5, how does that compare to last month, last year? Is your traffic growing over time?
In the left menu, navigate to audience, and then overview. Set the date range to last month versus the same time last year. Let's view the data, specifically sessions, users, and page views. If the results are green and positive, that means you have improved since last year. Up to now, most of your results should confirm what we saw in Shopify Analytics. Question 6, how many users view only one page?
Your bounce rate tells you the percentage of users who viewed only one page, and then left your site. Ideally, you want this number to be as low as possible. In the left menu, navigate to Audience Overview. In the overview, take a look at the data for bounce rate. If you use your blog as one of the primary sources of traffic, your bounce rate might be higher than normal. Even a bounce rate of above 70% would not be out of the ordinary.
If your store only has a single page, your bounce rate will also be very high. Question 7, how many new visitors do you have compared to returning visitors? If one of your goals is to get people to come back to your site regularly, in the left menu, navigate to Audience, then Behavior. Then go to New versus Returning. In the table at the bottom of the page, you will see the sessions column next to returning visitor. If the overall traffic to your site is growing, and you have increased the percentage of that incoming traffic into returning visitors, you are on your way to success.
Question 8, let's confirm what devices customers are using when visiting. In the left menu, navigate to Audience, then to Mobile, and to Overview. In the table at the bottom, let's examine the Session column. What is the percentage of users that are visiting your store on tablet and mobile? Question 9, if your customers are looking at more than one page per session, let's find out where they go.
In Google Analytics, this is called user flow. In the left menu, navigate to Audience, User Flow. Click on the top country. Select View only this segment. Begin with the starting pages, and then you can select one of your most popular pages and see which pages your customers like to visit after that page. Question 10, let's look deeper into details for our traffic sources.
In the left menu, navigate to Acquisition, All Traffic, Source slash Medium. In the table at the bottom, look at all the sources and the data next to each. Sort by individual columns by clicking on the column heading. In that table, you can view which traffic sources drive more conversion and more revenue. Question 11, what is your most popular page? In the left menu, navigate to Behavior, Site Content, All Pages.
Take a look at the table with the list of pages. Question 12, where is the traffic to these pages coming from? On the table at the bottom, click on the page you want to view data for. Locate the table that is now at the bottom of the window. Click on Secondary Dimension, and then Acquisition. Next, click on Source. When you understand where your traffic is coming from, you can also figure out if that traffic is meeting your KPIs and goals.
Question 13, page speed is an essential metric, and lowering the amount of time it takes to load a page should be an important KPI for your store. Which pages load slowly on your store? In the left menu, navigate to Behavior, Site Speed, Page Timings. In the results table, you can view the average page load time, which may be in the red. That means that these pages are loading slower than the average for your website.
If they are high traffic pages, you could consider speeding them up. It is easy to be overwhelmed by the amount of data you will see in GA. But you need to think of GA as a tool to find the answers you need about your store. And the best way to do that is tracking goals. One of the most important aspects of GA is goal setting. If you don't have goals set up, your data is just about useless. You need to have goals set up for actions on your store.
You don't need to set up goals for things like visits to your blog. GA measures page visits anyway. In this course, we assume you have your goals setup and tracking conversions to that goal. Honestly, if you have a button on your store, it should mean that you want customers to click on it. If you want customers to click on it, you need to see how many people do. And for that, you need a goal. As an e-commerce site, you have a funnel.
Remember we looked at your funnels in module 1. Your Google Analytics funnel will tell you how much traffic is dropping off at each funnel step. Not got any goals set up? Your CRO starts here. In Google Analytics, you have four ways to track goals-- URLs, time, pages per visit, events. To start setting up your goals, go to Google Analytics admin. Click on Goals.
Click on plus goal, and name your goal with an easily recognizable name, so you know what is being tracked. You cannot delete goals from Google, though you can deactivate them. Google Analytics applies goals as your data is being gathered. Question 14, what type of goal do we want to build? For our funnel, we want to use a URL destination goal. URL destination goals track URLs that you specify.
Every time a user visits that URL, they trigger the goal. These are commonly thank-you pages, confirmation pages, and PDFs. Goal URL-- this is the URL that triggers your goal. You only need to enter the part of the URL that comes after the domain. If the full URL is yoursite.com/thankyou, just enter in /thankyou. Match type-- this determines how strict you want your analytics to be when matching the type, exact match, contains, or rejects.
Goal funnels are a visual representation of how users progress through your funnel from where they enter to where they complete an action. You will be able to clearly see where users leave your funnel and can then work on figuring out why and how to fix it. A word of warning-- goal funnels are best for when users take a specific path or action. If you want to see how people flow through your site and move backwards and forwards and how they interact with your store, use the visitors flow report.
There are an unlimited amount of reports you can set up using Google Analytics. By now, you'll have a good idea of where the issues are on your store, where people are leaving, and what pages you need to improve and test. We will also want to install heat map tracking on our store. Typically, Lucky Orange or Hotjar work well on Shopify. For our example, we will use Hotjar.