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Google Analytics Updates — Next Stop, “Event Tracking”

Posted By Robert Gorell On December 14, 2007 @ 1:43 pm In Accountable Marketing,Persuasive Scenarios,Web Analytics | 16 Comments


The Google Analytics team just announced some nice updates [2]. Yes, the interface has been translated into Thai, Filipino, Indonesian, Czech, Hungarian, and Portuguese, but there’s another story happening between the lines about the switch from “urchin.js” javascript to the new “ga.js” standard, which doesn’t require tagging an entire Web page just to measure a single action. The big news is how the switch to ga.js javascript will change how Google Analytics users plan and optimize their online marketing.

The change in script reflects the fact that “page views” are dead (although some [3] have replaced them with zombie metrics). Additionally, this round of GA updates makes it easier to track ecommerce transactions [4] and see how metrics relate to each other [5]. But you can’t see how visitor actions relate to each other — yet.

Now that visitor action can be called “events” and tracked with ga.js tags, it’s going to be much easier for GA users to see how a series of actions tie together. Fortunately, Google has built an “event tracking” interface to help you take advantage of the more robust ga.js script. For now, it’s in closed beta, but when it launches, the reports will look something like this:

From Marketing Pilgrim

The challenge for marketers, analytics specialists, and anyone who’s a little of both — either by training or necessity — is to realize that standardized metrics aren’t enough. Event Tracking isn’t about measuring how many times visitors complete one-off actions. (If you do only that, the feature will be, in most cases, meaningless — or “cool,” which can be even more misleading.) Nope. Event Tracking is about measuring scenarios [6].

Since it’s designed to help you measure the relationships between actions and content, the to-be-launched Event Tracking interface should encourage GA users to do a better job of planing the visitor experience and to not be content with the same old generic data.

Looks like 2008 will be good year to be in the scenario planning [7] and optimization [8] business! ;)

[Image credit: Marketing Pilgrim [9]. If you'd like to learn more about how to use the latest version of Google Analytics, these updates aside, Avinash [10] has you covered. To read more about the use the most recent updates, see WebProNews [11] and ProBlogger [12].]

Article printed from Conversion Rate Optimization & Marketing Blog | FutureNow: http://www.grokdotcom.com

URL to article: http://www.grokdotcom.com/2007/12/14/google-analytics-sets-stage-for-event-tracking/

URLs in this post:

[1] Image: http://www.grokdotcom.com/2007/12/13/google-analytics-update

[2] updates: http://analytics.blogspot.com/2007/12/announcing-new-graphing-tools-gajs.html

[3] some: http://www.grokdotcom.com/2007/07/10/page-views-stink-but-time-spent-ha/

[4] track ecommerce transactions: http://www.google.com/support/googleanalytics/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=55528

[5] see how metrics relate to each other: http://www.google.com/support/googleanalytics/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=81653

[6] scenarios: http://www.futurenowinc.com/persuasion-scenarios-increase-conversion.htm

[7] scenario planning: http://www.futurenowinc.com/methodology.htm

[8] optimization: http://futurenowinc.com/scenario-analysis.htm

[9] Marketing Pilgrim: http://www.marketingpilgrim.com/2007/10/urchin-software.html

[10] Avinash: http://www.kaushik.net/avinash/2007/05/google-analytics-is-re-launched-do-these-five-things-first-in-v2.html

[11] WebProNews: http://www.webpronews.com/topnews/2007/12/14/google-analytics-adds-graphing-e-commerce

[12] ProBlogger: http://www.problogger.net/archives/2007/12/14/google-analytics-add-new-comparison-graphing-tools/

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