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Setting up a Funnel in Google Analytics

April 16, 2010

You’ve built the perfect website for your business. You’ve spent countless hours mapping out and creating the perfect paths for your customers to find the “pot of gold”. What happens if the paths you’ve created are not so perfect? How do you know where the barriers are in the paths you created? Google Analytics provides a tool called funnels to help you find the barriers.

Funnel tracking is used to measure how effective a path is at leading a customer down the process of completing a goal. A goal can be a sale, or a signup, or even a download of a UVP (unique value proposition).

The funnel is going to provide you with detailed information on where in the path the problems occur. You will be able to track your visitors from point A to when they leave the site. Based on the funnel analysis you can tweak your paths and pages to get a higher number of visitors converting the goals you’ve setup.

Google provides great instructions on how to setup a funnel . You will need to have at least one goal defined in order to setup the funnel tracking.

“After you’ve entered your goal information, define a funnel if you’ve selected a ‘URL Destination’ goal type:

1. Click ‘Yes, create a funnel for this goal.’

2. Enter the ‘URL’ of the first page of your conversion funnel. This page should be a page that is common to all users working their way towards your goal. For example, if you are tracking user flow through your checkout pages, do not include a product page as a step in your funnel. Please note: Funnel URLs are treated as regular expressions. For this reason, you can include wildcard characters and use other regular expression methods if you want to match more than a single URL. Learn more about regular expressions.

3. Enter a ‘Name’ for this step.

4. If this step is a ‘Required step’ in the conversion process, select the checkbox to the right of the step. If this checkbox is selected, users reaching your goal page without travelling through this funnel page will not be counted as conversions. Learn more about the ‘Required Step’ option in a funnel.

5. Continue entering goal steps until your funnel has been completely defined. You may enter up to 10 funnel steps, or as few as a single step.

6. Click Save Changes to create this Goal and funnel, or Cancel to exit without saving.”

As you can see setting up funnel tracking is a must if you want to improve your sites performance at converting the goals of your site. The funnel process is easy to setup and an excellent way to find the barriers in the paths you’ve created. Once the funnels are setup you’ll be on your way to a higher conversion rate.