We’ve already showed you how to translate business goals to analytics goals
, and we’ve provided clear instructions for how to set up Google Analytics Goal Tracking. With this in place, you’re able to track all conversions in Google Analytics and even import them directly into Google AdWords.
That’s enough, right? Why would you even bother to set up AdWords conversion tracking separately?
Simple: to give AdWords the credit it deserves!
You may know that, by default, Google Analytics attributes every conversion to the last non-direct source. That means that if your customer’s last contact with the site was via Google organic search, even if an AdWords ad was technically their first point of discovery, the conversion will show up as coming from google/organic.
Over time, this can actually skew your understanding (or your boss’ understanding) of the success you’re seeing from AdWords. Here at Megalytic, we believe it’s important that AdWords receives at least some credit any time it was part of a user’s process of finding your site. By setting up AdWords conversion tracking, you’ll be able to credit conversions to AdWords that occur within a specified window of time (default 30 days) after a user clicked an ad, even if that person came back via another source.
Setting up AdWords tracking also allows you to track unique conversions. This means that if the same user fills out forms multiple times on your site, you’re only tracking one conversion per user. In contrast, Google Analytics will track multiple conversions from the same user if they happen across different sessions. Of course, if for some reason you want to count every conversion separately (say that you sell products via your site and the same user could be making multiple purchases) you can still count all conversions.
Now that we’ve established the need to set up conversion tracking directly through AdWords, you need to decide how you’re going to define a conversion and what it is you’re going to track. A conversion should correlate with someone showing interest in your business beyond just a casual visit to your site, including any activity from a contact form submission to a free ebook download. If you are running an Ecommerce site, you may want to define any purchase as a conversion. Once you’ve determined a conversion to track, you can then proceed to setting up the tracking code and putting it into your site.