Can you trust Smart Goals in Google Analytics?

Recently, Smart Goals in Google Analytics have resurfaced as a helpful feature for ecommerce merchants, but particularly Shopify merchants. In a previous post, we outline what Smart Goals are and why some ecommerce businesses use them. However, a lack of trust (and lack of endorsement) with the Google Analytics feature has turned away ecommerce merchants, particularly Shopify merchants. Like we discussed in the previous post, Smart Goals is a goal-setting users can enable in Google Analytics. Unlike other goals, Smart Goals uses both behavioral data and contextual (shared) data to predict which of your web sessions will result in a conversion. The pitfall here is that the data is not your data, which would naturally be the best predictor of future conversions. Instead, Google's algorithm seeks highly-engaged visitors and then uses that data to conclude the likelihood a given web session ends with a conversion. Google puts it this way: To generate Smart Goals, we apply machine learning across thousands of websites that use Google Analytics and have opted in to share anonymized conversion data. From this information, we can distill dozens of key factors that correlate with likelihood to convert: things like session duration, pages per session, location, device and browser. We can then apply these key factors to any website. The easiest way to think about Smart Goals is that they reflect your website visits that our model indicates are most likely to lead to conversions. Are Smart Goals a good idea? There's a big hitch in the original concept. Smart Goals was designed for merchants using Google Ads who don’t use conversion tracking. Smart Goals was to help optimise their Ads campaigns by collecting important metrics of user engagement. In theory, it sounds brilliant and helpful for ecommerce merchants and business owners of all scales. But here's how it breaks down in real life: Advertise, measure, repeat As a rule of thumb, ecommerce merchants with stores of all sizes should be measuring their advertising performance. Even if you're creating a "set it and forget it" Google Ads campaign, it's still crucial to track product views, page views, user engagements, cost per click, etc. If you're advertising your products without measuring, you're likely wasting your time and your budget. So how do you ensure you're making good use of ad dollars? Properly set up conversion tracking. Littledata's Google Ads connection is a great place to start. With the connection, you can be confident in your data reporting and that you're tracking the metrics that matter. [subscribe heading="Get Littledata's connection for Google Ads" background_color="grey" button_text="Get the connection" button_link=https://blog.littledata.io/2019/02/28/link-analytics-to-adwords-with-our-new-google-ads-connection/] With conversion tracking, you can follow a shopper's journey and see how many ad clicks lead to purchases, contacts, downloads, signups and more. This data will help you better optimise your campaigns and adjust the ad copy, visuals and calls-to-action to what performs best. Unfortunately, there are thousands of ecommerce merchants who advertise their products without proper conversion tracking. This sets them up for underperforming campaigns and stalls their online store from scaling. Can you really trust anonymous data? The short answer is a resounding no, and for a few reasons: Using other people's data to make crucial product and marketing decisions around your campaigns, your website and your customers isn't a good idea. Only your own customer behavior trends will guarantee you're making optimal business decisions for your product marketing campaigns and your online store. How does Google's algorithm determine likely conversions? If conversions aren't defined and conversion tracking isn't properly set up, how can likely conversions be determined? Google basically assigns each web session a score, with the top sessions made into Smart Goals. That begs the question, "what defines top sessions?" Google scans anonymous data (such as session duration, pages per session, location, device, and browser) to select the users that are "most engaged" in your online store. For example, let's say Shawna the Shopify merchant. Shawna uses Google Analytics to track her product sales and other "big data" figures. However, Shawna has never set up goals in GA. For someone like Shawna, Google would use engagement metrics in place of conversion metrics, since Shawna has no conversion tracking for her Shopify store. This is not necessarily problematic. What is problematic is that other important metrics are left untracked. This includes metrics like: Average order value Customer lifetime value Cost of engaged users Sales increases Google Ads campaign optimisation If conversion tracking was set up (rather than Smart Goals), Shawna would easily be able to trace the online journeys and user engagements on her Shopify store. Littledata's Shopify connection with Google Analytics would also provide Shawna with curated reports and analytics to help make sense of her GA data stream. What's the verdict? While even Google advocates for conversion tracking, there is a better way to track the metrics that support better decisions for your ecommerce business. When advertising, especially with Google Ads, it’s incredibly important to use your own data to make decisions for the positive growth of your campaigns.

by Nico
2019-07-26

What are Smart Goals in Google Analytics?

In a nutshell, Smart Goals measure the most engaged visits to your website and automatically turn those visits into Goals, even if you don't have conversion tracking or ecommerce tracking. Those Goals are then used to improve your Google Ads bidding. Not only are Smart Goals one of our favorite features of Google Analytics, but also a helpful resource for ecommerce merchants of all sizes. How do Smart Goals work? The Smart Goals feature in Google Analytics is the result of machine learning algorithms and configured at the view level. These algorithms scan dozens of signals within your website sessions to determine which signals are most likely to result in a conversion. Each session is assigned a score, with the "best" sessions being translated into Smart Goals. So what are these "signals"? Session duration, pages per session, location, device and browser type are among the most popular. To determine the best sessions, Smart Goals establishes a threshold by selecting approximately the top 5% of the traffic to your site coming from AdWords. Once that threshold is set, Smart Goals applies it to all your website sessions, including traffic from channels other than AdWords. After enabling Smart Goals in Analytics, they can be imported into AdWords. What do I need before setting up Smart Goals? If you're an online store owner interested in using Smart Goals, you'll need to have an existing Google Ads account linked to Google Analytics. You'll also need edit permissions at the view level in order to complete the setup. Before setting up Smart Goals, your linked Google Ads account must also have sent at least 500 clicks to the selected Analytics view over the past 30 days (if the linked account falls below 250 clicks over the past 30 days for the selected view, Smart Goals will be deactivated until the clicks rise again to 500 or more). Google Analytics recommends that Smart Goals be used when you aren't measuring conversions. In other words, they're an easy way to use your best sessions as conversions. You can then use Smart Goals to optimise your Google Ads performance based on the best sessions pattern. [subscribe heading="Try Littledata free for 14 days" button_text="Start your free trial" button_link="https://littledata.io/app/get-free-trial"] How to set up Smart Goals If your user permissions are eligible, you can enable Smart Goals by selecting the goal type when following the regular goal setup flow: Sign in to Google Analytics. Click Admin, and navigate to the desired view. In the view column, click Goals. Click + New Goal. Select Smart Goal (if available). Give your Smart Goal a name and click Save. No additional configuration or customization is required (they're called "Smart" for a reason!) How to import Smart Goals into Google Ads After you've activated Smart Goals in Google Analytics, sign in to your Google Ads account, click the Tools tab, and select Conversions. Click Analytics in the left-hand menu. Check the boxes next to the goals or transactions you want to import. Click Continue. On the next page, you'll see settings that will apply to all of the goals or transactions you selected. Make your choices, then click Import goals. Click Close, or to import more goals, click Import more. Google Ads will begin importing the data from your Analytics account. Historical data prior to your import will not be included. Your Smart Goals report To see exactly how Smart Goals perform, use the Conversions > Goals > Smart Goals report. This report shows how Smart Goals traffic differs from other traffic to your website. You can also include the Smart Goals Completed dimension in custom reports. The Smart Goals report also shows how Smart Goals would perform even before enabling them in your view. This helps you determine if Smart Goals will be a useful feature for your ecommerce business. Interested in getting help with any of these features? Littledata's enterprise plans include complete support, a dedicated account manager, data analytics experts and ecommerce Google Analytics consulting. We covered what Smart Goals are, but are they actually beneficial? Next, we cover the why (or why not) behind Smart Goals. 

2019-07-25

How to choose the best Google Analytics consultant for your store

It's no secret that Google Analytics is the bedrock of modern analytics. For data analytics experts in all verticals — not only ecommerce — Google Analytics is the primary tool for setting goals, tracking results, ecommerce benchmarking and optimising campaigns for peak performance. But GA is no walk in the park. It's a complex platform with a robust dashboard, unique features like Enhanced Ecommerce and dozens of helpful tracking features for merchants big and small. Because GA can be a learning curve for inexperienced users, many merchants opt to work with a Google Analytics consultant or Google Analytics consulting group to help them navigate the waters of GA and fully optimise their product campaigns. [subscribe heading="Get the best Google Analytics consultants for ecommerce" background_color="green" button_text="get started" button_link="https://www.littledata.io/app/enterprise"] Before you go hunting for a GA consultant for your online store, make sure they check all the important boxes: Coding experience: from UTM parameters to more complex bug fixes, a respectable GA consultant should be comfortable messing around with code. While troubleshooting and custom implementations are the most common calls for coding experience, Google Analytics experts should be well-versed in coding within GA. Segmenting aptitude: As the old adage goes, averages always lie. In other words, the insight of data reports goes beyond the average numbers that GA shows. To better understand the data, an experienced GA consultant should know how to segment the data. If you hire a GA consultant who shows you plain GA exports exactly as Google shows it to the user, he/she is providing your store no value. Data without a plan of action is just a collection of reported numbers — nothing more. Deliver insights, not reports: Not every store owner understands bounce rates, but most understand the type of person that finds their website, don't take any on-site action, and leave the site right away. In other words, a good GA consultant should not be interested in exports from GA, but insights from GA. They should be able to extrapolate data from GA, explain to store owners what it means and communicate the impact for ecommerce business owners. Typically, store owners are not interested in complex GA data, and they don't have time to read comprehensive reports — they need guidance, translation and plain english to turn data into actionable insights. There's no getting around it — highly effective (and affordable) Google Analytics consultants are difficult to come by. Luckily, there's a better way for merchants to track data they can trust and build their strategy around reliable reporting from GA. Littledata's enterprise plans offer all the benefits of a personal Google Analytics consultant along with better insights, the experience to address complex issues, and dashboards to visualise the KPIs that matter to your store. [subscribe heading="Try Littledata free for 14 days" background_color="grey" button_text="start my free trial"] Why store owners choose Littledata enterprise plans 1) Start with an audit, sail to higher revenue After all, Littledata was started as a next-gen audit tool, so it's no accident that enterprise plans begin with an audit review.   During the audit, we review your store's data gaps and tracking issues keeping you from data you can trust for actionable insights. Our audits extend across marketing channels, mobile app performance and user behaviour on your storefront and product pages.   Our Google Analytics-certified account managers ensure a smooth process through strategy, implementation and optimisation. 2) Define project goals If your store requires more than just ongoing audit fixes, we work with your team to define custom goals for the products you really want to push.   This can be something as standard as setting up Enhanced Ecommerce in Google Analytics or as complex as developing a multi-site dashboard to analyse average customer revenue by location. Either way, our enterprise plans offer complete online support for peace of mind.   3) Decision-making power throughout the process Unlike some account managers, our team is hands-on from initial GA set up to implementation.  You'll be looped in throughout the entire process with an in-app, custom dashboard that updates real-time.   If you have GA questions, enterprise customers can also communicate with our account team through online tools like Slack and Trello.   4) Always getting better Our GA team monitors your data collection for accuracy and depth before creating custom recommendations. These include step-by-step reports showing how to use your new analytics setup, how to maximise automated reporting and how to improve your marketing ROI and drive more revenue through fixed attribution. Take the first step In addition to deep experience with platforms including Shopify Plus, Magento, Demandware (Salesforce) and BigCommerce, we support and smoothly connect with the full range of popular tools for ecommerce analytics, including Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, Segment, Facebook Pixel, and more.   Take the first step into Littledata's custom enterprise plans!

2019-07-18

[Free ebook] Accurate Shopify data is closer than you think

Even for essential ecommerce data like product sales and transactions, setting up a reliable data collection system is harder than one might think. Many ecommerce marketers use Google Analytics to track performance, but it's not as simple as a "1...2...3" setup. At Littledata, we work with top apps and agencies in the Shopify ecosystem, especially Shopify Plus partners. In turn, these partners work with marketing managers, data analytics experts and ecommerce store managers across the globe. One of the questions we often receive from these managers: Why don’t my transactions in Google Analytics match those in Shopify? While a plethora of factors can cause differences in Shopify tracking results, we’ve narrowed it down to 6 main causes. 1) Orders go unrecorded in Google Analytics Why does this happen? As a Shopify store owner, your customer never sees the order confirmation page. When online orders go unrecorded in Google Analytics, it’s almost always due to payment gateways not sending users back to the order thank you page. 2) Errors occur in the Google Analytics/Google Tag Manager integration The Google Analytics/Tag Manager integration allows Google Analytics to track only a few  “micro-moments” (page visits, page bounces, etc.) required for a complete picture of your customers' online shopping journey. Though commerce connections like Shopify’s are designed to work for standard websites, some store owners build themes that are more personalised to their products. This requires a custom integration with Google Analytics. Want to know the other 4 causes?  These two issues probably seem highly fixable (they are) but they don't stand alone. There are a host of factors that cause data mismatches between Shopify and Google Analytics data, all of which threaten to weaken your marketing strategy, hurt your sales performance and damage your bottom line. Luckily, we have just the thing to help.  Our free ebook, Why your Google Analytics data doesn't match your Shopify data, isn't just an answer to the question — it's packed with details, pro tips and an ultimate solution to your data mismatches. The ebook will also show you how common tools like ReCharge and CartHook can actually skew your data (and how to fix this). The best Shopify analytics are those that are accurate and trustworthy. With the help of our ebook, you're on your way to Shopify greatness!   [subscribe heading="Get the free ebook" background_color="green" button_text="Free download" button_link="https://www.littledata.io/app/ebook-why-google-analytics-dont-match-shopify-analytics"]

by Nico
2019-06-26

Is Google Analytics accurate? 6 common issues and how to fix them

Google Analytics is used by tens of millions of websites and apps around the world to measure web visitor engagement. Due to some users choosing not to be tracked or blocking cookies, Google Analytics can't measure 100% of visitors. But when set up correctly, GA measures over 95% of genuine visitors (as opposed to web scrapers and bots). At Littledata, our customers come from a range of industries. But when they first come to the Littledata app for help fixing their analytics, we hear many of the same questions: Is Google Analytics accurate? How do I know if my Google Analytics setup is giving me reliable data? In this blog post, we dissect some common issues with Google Analytics before providing a solution to help your ecommerce tracking be as accurate as possible. 6 common issues with Google Analytics (and how to fix them) 1) Your tracking script is not implemented correctly There are two common issues with the actual tracking script setup: It's implemented twice on some pages It's missing completely from some pages When the script is duplicated, you’ll see an artificially low bounce rate (usually below 5%), since every page view is sending twice to Google Analytics. When the script is missing from pages, you’ll see self-referrals from your own website. How to fix it Our recommendation is to use Google Tag Manager across your whole site to ensure the tracking script is loaded with the right web property identifier at the right time during the page load. 2) Your account has lots of spam When it comes to web traffic and analytics setup, spam is a serious issue. Spammers send 'ghost' referrals to get your attention as a website owner. This means that the traffic you see in Google Analytics may not come from real people, even if you have selected to exclude bots. How to fix it Littledata’s app filters out all future spammers and Pro Reporting users benefit from having those filters updated weekly. 3) Your own company traffic is not excluded Your web developers, content writers and marketers will be heavy users of your own site, and you need to filter this traffic from your Google Analytics to get a view of genuine customers or prospects. How to fix it You can do this based on location (e.g. IP address) or pages they visit (e.g. admin pages). [subscribe] 4) One person shows up as two or more users Fight Club aside (spoiler alert), when the same person re-visits our site, we expect them to look the same each time. Web analytics are more complicated. When Google Analytics speaks of 'users', what it's really tracking is a visit from a particular device or browser instance. For example, if I have a smartphone and a laptop computer and visit your site from both devices (without cross-device linking), I’ll appear as two users. Even more confusingly, if I visit your site from the Facebook app on my phone and then from the Twitter app, I’ll appear as two users —  the two apps use two different internet browser instances. How to fix it While Google is looking at ways to use its accounts system (Gmail, Chrome, etc.), there's not a lot which can be done to fix this at the moment. 5) Marketing campaigns are not attributed to revenue or conversions If the journey of visitors on your site proceeds via another payment processor or gateway, you could be losing the link between the sale (or goal conversion) and the original marketing campaigns. You will see sales attributed to Direct or Referral traffic, when theyactually came from somewhere else. How to fix it This is a remarkably common issue with Shopify stores. That’s why we built a popular Shopify reporting app that solves the issue automatically. [subscribe heading="Get the Littledata Shopify reporting app" background_color="grey" button_text="get the app" button_link="https://www.littledata.io/shopify"] For other kinds of sites, the issue can often be resolved by setting up cross-domain tracking. 6) You aren't capturing key events (like purchases or button clicks) Google Analytics only tracks views of a page by default, which may not be meaningful if you have a highly interactive website or app. How to fix it Sending custom events is the key to ensuring your tracking is both accurate and relevant. Google Tag Manager makes this easier than it would be otherwise. However, you may need to speak to a qualified Google Analytics consultant to decide what to track. For better certainty that your analytics are fully accurate, try Littledata's free Google Analytics audit or get in touch for a quick consultation. We ❤️ analytics and we're always here to help.

2019-05-27

How to fix marketing attribution for Safari ITP 2.3

The latest version of Safari limits the ability for Google Analytics (and any other marketing tags) to track users across domains, and between visits more than a day apart. Here’s how to get this fixed for your site. This article was updated 3rd October to clarify changes for ITP 2.3. How does this affect my analytics? Safari's Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP) dramatically changes how you can attribute marketing on one of the web's most popular browsers, and ITP 2.1 makes this even more difficult. How will the changes affect your analytics? Currently your marketing attribution in Google Analytics (GA) relies on tracking users across different visits on the same browser with a first-party user cookie - set on your domain by the GA tracking code. GA assigns every visitor an anonymous ‘client ID’ so that the user browsing your website on Saturday can be linked to the same browser that comes back on Monday to purchase. In theory this user-tracking cookie can last up to 2 years from the date of the first visit (in practice, many users clear their cookies more frequently than that), but anything more than one month is good enough for most marketing attribution. ITP breaks that user tracking in two major ways: Any cookie set by the browser, will be deleted after 7 days (ITP 2.1)Any cookie set by the browser, after the user has come from a cross-domain link, will be deleted after one day (ITP 2.2)Any local storage set when the user comes from a cross domain link is wiped after 7 days of inactivity (ITP 2.3) This will disrupt your marketing attribution. Let’s take two examples. Visitor A comes from an affiliate on Saturday, and then comes back the next Saturday to purchase: Before ITP: sale is attributed to AffiliateAfter ITP: sale is attributed to ‘Direct’Why: 2nd visit is more than one day after the 1st Visitor B comes from a Facebook Ad to your latest blog post on myblog.com, and goes on to purchase: Before ITP: sale is attribute to FacebookAfter ITP: sale is attributed to ‘Direct’Why: the visit to the blog is not linked to the visit on another domain The overall effect will be an apparent increase in users and sessions from Safari, as the same number of user journeys are broken in down into more, shorter journeys. How big is the problem? This is a big problem! Depending on your traffic sources it is likely to affect between a quarter and a half of all your visits. The update (ITP 2.1) is included in Safari version 12.1 onwards for Mac OS and Safari Mobile. It does not affect Safari in-app browsing. Apple released iOS 12.2 and Mac OS 10.14.4 on 25th March 2019, and at the time of writing around 30% of all web visits came from these two browser versions on a sample of larger sites. The volume for your site may vary; you can apply this Google Analytics segment to see exactly how. The affected traffic will be greater if you have high mobile use or more usage in the US (where iPhones are more popular). Why is Apple making these changes? Apple has made a strong point of user privacy over the last few years. Their billboard ad at the CES conference in Las Vegas earlier this year makes that point clearly! Although Google Chrome has overtaken Safari, Internet Explorer and Firefox in popularity on the desktop, Safari maintains a very dominant position in mobile browsing due to the ubiquitous iPhone. Apple develops Safari to provide a secure web interface for their users, and with Intelligent Tracking Prevention (ITP) they intended to reduce creepy retargeting ads following you around the web. Genuine web analytics has just been caught in the cross-fire. Unfortunately this is likely not to be the last attack on web analytics, and a permanent solution may not be around for some time. Our belief is that users expect companies to track them across ­their own branded websites and so the workarounds below are ethical and not violating the user privacy that Apple is trying to protect. How to fix this There are three outline fixes I would recommend. I’m grateful to Simo Ahava for his research on all the possible solutions. The right solution for your site depends on your server setup and the development resources you have available. If you’re lucky enough to use our  Shopify app the next version of our script will include solution 1 below. Contact our support team if you'd like to test the private beta version. For each solution, I’ve rated them out of three in these areas: Quick setup: how much development time it will take to solveCompatibility: how likely this is to work with different domain setupsLongevity: how likely this is to work for future updates to Safari ITP Update: Solutions 1 and 2, using local storage will no longer work with ITP 2.3 Solution 3: Server-side cookie service Quick setup * Compatibility *** Longevity *** In the long term, ITP may target the local storage API itself (which is already blocked in Private browsing mode). In ITP 2.3, the local storage is wiped after 7 days, along with cookies. So solution 3 securely sets the HTTPS cookie from your web server itself, rather than via a browser script. This also has the advantage of making sure any cross-domain links tracked using GA's linker plugin can last more than one day after the click-through with ITP 2.3. The downside is this requires either adapting your servers, proxy servers or CDN to serve a cookie for GA and adapt the GA client-side libraries to work on a web server. If your company uses Node.js servers or a CDN like Amazon CloudFront or Cloudflare this may be significantly easier to achieve. If you don’t have direct control of your server infrastructure it’s a non-starter. Also, a caveat is that Apple recommends settings cookies as HttpOnly to be fully future proof - but those would then be inaccessible by the GA client tracking. Full technical details. What about other marketing tags working on Safari? All other marketing tags which track users across more than one session or one subdomain are going to experience the same problem. With Google Ads the best solution is to  link your Ad account to Google Analytics, since this enables Google to use the GA cookie to  better attribute conversion in Google Ads reporting. Facebook will no doubt provide a solution of their own, but in the meantime you can also attribute Facebook spend in GA using Littledata’s  connection for Facebook Ads. Are there any downsides of making these changes? As with any technical solution, there are upsides and downsides. The main downside here is again with user privacy. Legally, you might start over-tracking users. By resetting cookies from the local storage that the user previously requested to be deleted, this could be violating a user’s right to be forgotten under GDPR. The problem with ITP is it is actually overriding the user’s preference to keep the cookie in usual circumstances, so there is no way of knowing the cookie was deleted by the user … or by Safari supposed looking out for the user! Unfortunately as with any customisation to the tracking code it brings more complexity to maintain, but I feel this is well worth the effort to maintain marketing attribution on one of the world's most popular browsers.

2019-05-24

Do I need the Google Analytics tracking code on every page?

The script which triggers the tracking events to Google must be loaded once (and only once) on every page of your site. While you don't need a Google Analytics consultant or Google Analytics consulting group to help you set up tracking, you’ll usually need either your Analytics tracking ID or the entire Javascript tracking code snippet to complete the manual setup. This corresponds to your Analytics property. To find the tracking ID and code snippet: Sign in to your Google Analytics account. Select the Admin tab. Select an account from the drop-down menu in the ACCOUNT column. Select a property from the drop-down menu in the PROPERTY column. Under PROPERTY, click Tracking Info > Tracking Code. The snippet provided here must be implemented on every page, even the pages you're not interested in. If you chose to not include the code on every page then: you will not be able to see the full flow of a client on your website. you will have inaccurate data about the time spent on site and actions taken. visits to untracked pages will appear as 'referrals' and so will skew the volume of sessions. marketing campaigns to the untracked pages will be lost. The easy way for an established website to verify the tracking is complete is Google Analytics > Acquisition > Referrals and search in the report after the name of your website, as shown below. You can also use Littledata's audit tool (hint hint). [subscribe heading="Try Littledata free for 14 days" background_color="green" button_text="Start my free trial" button_link="https://www.littledata.io/app/get-free-trial"] Choose how to set up tracking There are several ways to collect data in Google Analytics, depending on whether you want to track a website, an app or other internet-connected devices. To select the best installation method for what you wish to track, here is the complete guide from Google. Once you have successfully installed Google Analytics tracking, it may take up to 24 hours for data such as traffic referral information, user characteristics and browsing information to appear in your reports. Some of these metrics include buying behavior, average order value, customer lifetime value and more. However, you can immediately check your web tracking code setup. If you don’t think it's working correctly, you can check your Real-Time reports or use Google Tag Assistant to verify your setup. Tracking for Shopify merchants If you're a Shopify merchant using Google Analytics for tracking, you're in luck. Our new tracking code update for Shopify users is faster, more versatile and more efficient than ever before. Littledata's Google Analytics Shopify app provides the best Shopify analytics for your store — ones that contain accurate, fixed data to help you make better, more informed marketing and sales decisions.

2019-05-04

Link Analytics to AdWords with our new Google Ads connection

To target -- and retarget -- the right shoppers, ecommerce sites need to connect customer behaviour and ecommerce data from Google Analytics with their Google Ads (AdWords) accounts. But until now that was a complicated process, to say the least. Marketers have spent years going through detailed setup steps to connect the platforms, or wading through spreadsheets with manual imports and exports, building custom audiences and segments. It was an ongoing headache, but they did it because connecting shopping behaviour data with AdWords campaigns gets big results. Now there's a better way. Littledata's new Google Ads connection makes it easy to link Analytics to AdWords. Ecommerce sites are using the connection for smarter targeting that increases online sales and customer LTV. Why should you link Analytics to AdWords? In past posts we've highlighted the benefits of linking Analytics with AdWords for a mutually beneficial relationship. Littledata's new connection automates the process to ensure accurate tracking and more targeted campaigns. Benefits include: Online sales data in AdWords reports, and visa versa. Add sales columns to reports in Google Ads and view Google Ads costs in Google Analytics. Abandoned cart campaigns. Get higher ROI with targeted PPC campaigns based on shopping cart activity. Ecommerce hyper-segmentation, especially for Shopify stores and enterprise clients. Since Littledata fixes ecommerce tracking across the checkout flow, the Google Ads connection is especially powerful for marketers looking to retarget with granular user behaviour data, such as product list views, product detail pages and adds-to-cart. Multiple accounts. Multiple views. Our Google Ads connections lets you link multiple AdWords accounts to multiple Google Analytics views. It's that simple. Wait, do you mean Ads or AdWords? Have you heard the news? Google AdWords is now Google Ads. Google pitched the switch to Ads as a large-scale rebrand for simplicity, but it's clearly targeted in part at bumping up competition against other 'ads' in common parlance: Facebook Ads, Instagram Ads and Twitter Ads, with Reddit Ads quickly gaining pace among SaaS companies in particular. We still talk about AdWords a bit on the blog (as does the rest of the internet, such as Search Engine Land), but soon we'll all have to adapt to the change. So we're calling this new connection a Google Ads connection, but we don't expect marketers to stop chatting about AdWords any time soon. How does it work? After you sign up for Littledata, you can connect Analytics to AdWords from the Connections tab in the Littledata app. Just follow a couple of setup steps and the app makes the connection for you. No more manual connections. Plus, we audit your analytics setup continually to ensure consistent ecommerce tracking, campaign tagging and UTM parameters. So what are you waiting for? Those products aren't going to retarget themselves... And don't forget to try our Facebook Ads connection to complete your marketing analytics stack. It's an easy way to link Facebook Ads to Google Analytics. All paid plans in the Littledata app include a variety of Google Analytics connections for Shopify, Shopify Plus, ReCharge, Refersion, CartHook and more. PS. The next iteration of our Google Ads connection will provide automation for retargeting using ecommerce segments. Sign up for Littledata today so you're first in line!

by Ari
2019-02-28

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