What Should Your Google Analytics Goals Be?
Google Analytics goals, also known as conversions or events, are a useful way to keep track of a variety of website metrics. Rather than combing through all of your digital marketing every time you’d like to see how many people filled out a form or clicked to call your business, you can tell Google Analytics to automatically track and tally these actions for you in its dashboards.
How to use Google Analytics goals for B2B
Utilising Google Analytics goals can help you streamline operations and reduce time spent on work that isn’t profitable. It’s always a great feeling when you roll out changes and content to your website and see a resulting uptick in traffic. Without goals, you have no clear way of knowing which of your efforts is the most fruitful.
Similarly, if you see a drop in traffic or leads after making changes, you may be quick to assume that all your efforts were in vain. Google Analytics goals can help you identify what did and not work, so you can make better and informed decisions in the future.
There are a number of different goals that you can set up in Google Analytics. This includes goals that aid in:
- Tracking leads and revenue generation
- Assessing the number of website users who contact your business via a form vs. through a phone call
- The average number of pages your website users view during a session
- The typical amount of time a visitor spends exploring your website
- The way in which users move through sales funnels
Setting up Google Analytics goals is a highly customisable process. You can tailor the platform to track and report goals in whatever way works best for your team.
How to set up goals in Google Analytics
Goal tracking is available in both Universal Analytics and Google Analytics 4, however, the process and terminology varies a bit. Analytics goals are also compatible with Google Tag Manager.
Universal Analytics Goals
If your Google Analytics account utilises Universal Analytics, you can set up goals by going into the Admin section and clicking "Goals" under the relevant View that you would like to set up goals for. You'll have the option to set up four different types of goals.
- Destination goals, which log the number of times that a particular URL loads, such as a subscription confirmation or landing page. Some people refer to this as a “URL goal.” You can also use destination goals to track how many users click through a funnel the way you want (or expect) them to do so.
- Duration goals, which log visits that hit a defined length of time. For example, if you’d like to know the percentage of your website visitors that spend at least 10 minutes browsing your site, you can track this as a duration goal. You may also hear these goals referred to as “time goals.”
- Page per session goals that record the number of times a user’s page views reach a particular threshold. This goal can be useful if you’re trying to decrease your bounce rate and send visitors to multiple pages on your website. This is sometimes called a “screens per session” goal.
- Event goals, which you can customize to track different actions. Event goals can include tracking each time someone clicks on a PPC ad, plays a video,
You also have the option of assigning a financial value to every goal. This can give you an idea of how much each tracked action is worth in revenue.
Universal Analytics users can set up 20 goals per reporting view. If you need to track more than 20 goals for a given property, you’ll have to set up multiple views and move between the two.
Google Analytics 4 Goals (Events)
Google Analytics 4 still uses goals, but refers to them all as "events." You can create and view all active goals by clicking on “configure” and then “events” in your Analytics sidebar.
Google Analytics 4 automatically collects a variety of events as they happen, including ad clicks, page scrolling, screen views, file downloads and page scrolling. You can also set up specific goal parameters by defining the conditions you would like each event to meet. For example, if you wanted to track a form submission, you could set up the following:
- First goal parameter: “event_name equals page_view”
- Second goal location: “page_title equals /thank-you”
In this example, you’re tracking every time a visitor views the “thank you” confirmation page that loads after submitting a form.
If you’d like to assign a value to your goals in GA4, you can do so by marking them as conversions.
You can set up as many events as you would like when using Google Analytics 4.
Examples of Google Analytics goals for B2B
Ultimately, the goals you set up will depend on your unique business needs and objectives. The following goals are often a good starting point, though, for many companies.
It’s important to note that only Google Analytics users with Editor-level or higher permissions can create and modify goals.
Time on site
Use duration goals to track how long users remain on your site. If you already have a baseline for the average session length, you can use this goal to watch for any fluctuations after making changes to your site or launching a new campaign. If you’ve never tracked this metric before, you can set up a duration goal to use as your new baseline.
Watching your site’s pageview metrics is another way to get a sense for how well users are responding to changes and new content. You could utilise destination goals to make sure users are visiting key pages, and keep an eye on overall page per session goals as well.
If you use your website for lead generation, it can be useful to see what percentage of visitors view your contact form and complete a submission. To do this, you could implement:
- A goal to track the number of clicks on a “contact us” button
- A goal to track the number of times a post-submission URL page loaded for a user
- Assign a value to each form submission to get an idea for the potential revenue brought in by this page on your site
Click to call
By embedding a trackable click-to-call button on your website, you can begin to get a feel for how many phone leads originate on your website.
While Universal Analytics does include a behavior flow report, which displays user journeys, you can set up custom tracking for funnels using goals in both versions of Google Analytics. Through a combination of goals, you’ll be able to see if website visitors click on the pages you expect them to do so. By assigning a monetary value to these goals, you can further develop a picture of how profitable your funnel may be. For example, you could:
- Set up goals to track the number of times the first and last page in a funnel load for website visitors
- Track the clicks on the links or buttons you expect most users to click as they move through the flow
- Track form submissions within the funnel, with a value assigned to the goal
- Log the number of visitors who purchase a license or download a product after entering the funnel
Funnel tracking does not need to correlate directly to a paid product purchase. When paired with a free download, such as a whitepaper or case study, this type of funnel tracking is very useful for gauging the interest of potential B2B tech buyers. You can still assign a value to these goals based on the average lifetime value of a customer.
Troubleshooting Google Analytics goals and events
When you set up the correct goals and events, you can obtain a wealth of useful data about the way that potential customers interact with your website. This information is valuable for search engine optimisation (SEO), website performance, user experience and customer experience, digital marketing strategy and advertising efforts alike.
If your goals and events are not set up correctly, though, it can impact your data integrity and limit actionable insights. Common errors include:
- No visible data in the analytics account
- Not accurately counting every action that should be part of a goal
- Tracking the same type of digital analytics data in more than one way
- Misinterpreting the importance or impact of results
- Incorrectly calculating the value of a goal
If you’re a current Google Analytics user and see any of these issues, you may benefit from a comprehensive Google Analytics audit. During an audit, an Google Analytics certified expert will review your Google Analytics data and ensure that its goal and event parameters are accurate. This can include checking for accuracy with goal and event tracking.
Similarly, if you’re new to the Google Marketing Platform, it can be helpful to have someone show you how to set up Google Analytics. When you utilise the help of a Google Analytics agency from day one, you can be confident in the integrity of your data and its importance in your business decisions.
If you’re looking for a specialist Google Analytics agency to help set up the Google Analytics of your B2B tech company, check out our services here.