Shopify Analytics vs. Google Analytics: Why don't they match?

If you're a Shopify store owner using both Shopify analytics and Google Analytics, you're probably familiar with the often large discrepancies between the two tracking systems. What you might not know is that this happens in part because Shopify's default analytics misses tracking on 12 out of every 100 orders. That leaves you unaware of your true sales performance and marketing attribution, and what actions your customers are taking at key touchpoints along their buying journey. Layering expensive data dashboards and connectors on top of this, as many stores often do, just compounds the problem and leads to more wasted marketing spend. It's never a good idea to make decisions based on bad data. An insider's guide to fixing your Shopify store analytics The first step to fixing your Shopify tracking is understanding where it fails. You know the data is missing, but what's going on behind the scenes to cause it? And is there a better way? Fortunately, there is. Our free guide on why Google Analytics doesn't match Shopify analytics dives into: The main reasons why transactions go missing in GA How a data mismatch affects your bottom line A comparison of different tracking methods What you can do to fix Shopify analytics Read the ebook >>> Adding Google Analytics to Shopify If you're not already using Google Analytics with your Shopify store, getting it set up should be your first step toward improved data accuracy. Though Shopify does have a default GA integration, it misses tracking many key metrics.  We have a full walkthrough on setting up Google Analytics on your Shopify store, which covers what to look out for after you've set up GA as well. Using the methods in our guide will help you ensure you get a full and accurate picture of your data in GA. For a fast way to connect them automatically, try out Littledata's GA to Shopify connection for free. The trial allows you to get an accurate snapshot of your key metrics, and you'll still own that data in GA whether you continue using our advanced data connections or not. [subscribe]

2021-07-30

Segment Q2 Updates

Shopify to Segment is one of our most popular connections, so we're always making improvements that give users the capabilities they need to optimize revenue. This update adds key tracking tools that give stores greater insight into customer checkout behavior, Facebook marketing attribution, recurring billing, and more. Supporting subscriptions in the checkout Littledata’s Shopify source is now fully compatible with most common subscription billing apps using Shopify’s checkout. Our app captures all recurring orders — linking them back to the user who first purchased if possible — and tags the events to differentiate between one-time purchases, first-time subscription orders and recurring orders. You can now use Littledata to send event data from subscription apps in the Shopify checkout, including: ReChargeBoldOrdergrooveSmartrr If you are using ReCharge you can take advantage of the subscription lifecycle event tracking as well. Learn more about the subscription lifecycle events we push to Segment for churn analysis, including Subscription Created, Subscription Updated, Subscription Cancelled and Payment Method Updated. Facebook Conversions API destination Segment’s cloud-mode Facebook destination is now out of beta, and becoming increasingly popular with marketers looking to more accurately target their Facebook Ads in the face of increasing browser limitations. Next month Littledata will be adding all the extra event parameters needed for Facebook CAPI, so please contact us if you’d like to join the private beta. Opting out of client-side events We understand some of our customers want to instrument their own event tracking (maybe using Littledata’s Google Tag Manager data layer), but retain the server-side events from Shopify. In this case, Littledata’s tracking script is still needed on the Shopify storefront to initialise Segment AnalyticsJS library and capture the anonymous ID for server-side events. But, you can add disableClientSideEvents: true or disablePageviews: true in a manual settings update. GDPR cookie compliance If your store is using a Shopify-compatible cookie banner (or using a consent management platform like OneTrust or TrustArc), the Littledata’s tracker can respect your users’ choices by switching just one setting. For OneTrust we also push the user consent choices as a user trait, so you can control which personas are shared with other platforms. Simpler accepts_marketing flag User traits for all events where the user is known now contain a simple true/false accepts_marketing field — useful in CRM destinations for email marketing. This is in addition to the marketing_opt_in_level field, which can give more detail on whether this was a single or double opt-in for marketing. How to get Littledata's Shopify source for Segment If you aren't yet a Littledata user, you can start a free trial directly from the Shopify app store. If you already have a Littledata account, you can activate the Shopify-to-Segment connection directly in the Littledata app. On Shopify Plus? Learn more about Littledata Plus.

2021-07-23

Littledata announces Google Analytics integration for BigCommerce

We are excited to announce that Littledata will soon be available to BigCommerce merchants. Like our popular Shopify app for Google Analytics, our BigCommerce connection for Google Analytics will ensure accurate sales and marketing data across the user journey. BigCommerce will be Littledata's first ecommerce platform integration outside of Shopify. With brands like Superdry, Skull Candy and 5-hour Energy now on BigCommerce, the timing couldn't be better. Read on to see what we've been working on, the benefits for ecommerce marketers and data scientists, and how to get early access. Why BigCommerce? Founded in 2009, BigCommerce has seen remarkable growth over the last couple of years, especially in North America. A year ago when they went public, BigCommerce was already powering over 60,000 online stores in 120 countries. They have focused on additional sales channels such as Amazon since early on, and recently announced a major partnership with Amazon for fulfillment, and another with Mercado Libre for extension into the Latin American market. Everyone needs accurate data to make data-driven decisions. We're excited to be extending our ecommerce data platform to work with BigCommerce. We chose BC because it's a great fit with our customer base which are typically successful DTC brands looking to scale faster and smarter. In addition, there's a growing amount of overlap with our technology partners and agency partners around the world. Advanced Google Analytics integration Accurate data is essential for ecommerce growth, but ecommerce tracking is notoriously difficult. As the top data platform specifically designed for ecommerce, our upcoming release in the BigCommerce app store will change the game. Littledata's advanced Google Analytics connector for BigCommerce stores will give you accurate data, automatically. Whether you are an ecommerce manager looking for accurate data to drive decision making, or a CTO or web developer looking for a seamless tracking solution, we're here to make your job easier. Benefits include: Complete sales dataAccurate marketing attributionCheckout funnel trackingOwn the data in Google Analytics As with all Littledata connections, Littledata's BigCommerce Google Analytics integration has the added benefit of enabling accurate data in any connected BI dashboard or reporting tool. What's more, the integration will work with custom themes and headless BigCommerce setups! Subscription analytics Tracking recurring orders is one of Littledata's key benefits and one of the most-cited features in our five-star reviews. We are especially excited about extending our subscription analytics to BC stores, enabling accurate data about recurring transactions and customer lifetime value (LTV). Our first subscription analytics integration will be with our longtime integration partner ReCharge, who also recently launched on BigCommerce. Sign up here for early access. How to get early access Are you doing at least $1M in annual online revenue? If so, you can apply for early access to Littledata's BigCommerce integration for Google Analytics. Early adopters will not only get access to our data connector - they will also have a key role to play in shaping additional features and integrations. Note: if you are interested in connecting BigCommerce with GA4 (the newest version of Google Analytics), reach out to us about our beta program.

by Ari
2021-07-22

How to add Google Analytics to Shopify

Google Analytics is the world’s most popular marketing analytics platform, used by 98% of online stores. Shopify is the world’s most popular ecommerce platform, used by over two million active merchants. But these two popular platforms don't work together automatically. We’ll show you how to get Shopify to work with Google Analytics, and some of the common problems and solutions when adding Google Analytics to Shopify. Read on to learn step by step how you can add Google Analytics to Shopify, or jump to the section that answers your question in the guide below. 1. What are the options for adding Google Analytics to Shopify?2. The First Step: Creating a Google Analytics property for Shopify3. Option 1: Shopify’s in-built tracker4. Option 2: Using Littledata5. Option 3: Adding GA tags within Google Tag Manager (via GTM)6. Handling refunds and recurring orders7. Top seven things to check after adding Google Analytics Why add Google Analytics to Shopify? With the advent of Shopify Analytics, some of our customers ask why they need Google Analytics (GA) at all. Yet, GA has continued to be the most popular choice for web analytics since launching in 2007. [tip]Download our free ebook to learn why Shopify Analytics data doesn’t match Google Analytics[/tip] Shopify Analytics can answer some questions about products and revenue on your store. But, there are many important questions Google Analytics is better at answering. Things like: How your orders correspond to multiple marketing touchpoints Who your web visitors are, segmented by location, demographics, and page interactions Which shopping behaviors and ecommerce funnels drive revenue (with more detail than Shopify Analytics) How to sync audiences or conversion data with Google Ads to improve ad targeting How your Shopify store’s performance compares with previous years on another ecommerce platform To get all that juicy extra reporting, you will need to first add Google Analytics Enhanced Ecommerce tracking to your store. What is Enhanced Ecommerce tracking? If you want to track your customers in Google Analytics, you don’t just need to track the page views—which is easy. You also need to see key parts of the buyer’s journey, especially the purchase itself (with the order value). Google calls this Enhanced Ecommerce tracking: measuring the full customer journey—and what products got to which stage of the journey—from the product listing page, through adding to cart, all the way to checkout and purchase. This type of ecommerce tracking is a bit harder to set up. You need data about your product variants, SKUs, prices, and quantities available to send to Google. Enhanced Ecommerce is Google’s best solution for ecommerce analytics. It gives you a way to analyze not just the campaigns that led to pageviews, but how users interacted with products and payments. What are the options for adding Google Analytics to Shopify? For Universal Analytics Universal Analytics (UA) was the default for GA prior to 2020. You can tell if your store has Universal Analytics already because your web property ID will start `UA-` and then a string of numbers. To connect Shopify to Universal Analytics, your options are: Using the built-in tracking in Shopify’s store preferences Using Littledata’s advanced Shopify to Google Analytics app (which we’ll explain more later) Adding GA tags within Google Tag Manager (via GTM)—which is possible in combination with option 1 Pasting the gtag snippet directly into your store layout (not our recommended option as it makes maintenance of the tracking hard) Adding Google Analytics 4 Since October 2020, GA4 has been the default when setting up any new Google Analytics properties. GA4 brings a number of advantages, including faster, smarter reports, but unfortunately GA4 is not yet supported by Shopify—so using their built-in tracking is not possible. Note: There is still a way to create a new Universal Analytics property (see below) so you can choose any option above. What is the best way to add Google Analytics to Shopify? The method you choose for adding Google analytics to Shopify depends on your need for data completeness and accuracy as well as how much time you have to configure the setup. Achieving a good GTM implementation can take many days of experimentation. Even then, it can be liable to break when making edits to your theme.   Time to set up Completeness of data Who maintains it Shopify in-built tracking MINUTES LOW - * Littledata’s app MINUTES HIGH LITTLEDATA Via GTM DAYS MEDIUM YOU * We haven’t seen any updates to Shopify’s GA tracking since they launched enhanced ecommerce reports back in 2016 The First Step: Creating a Google Analytics property for Shopify Whichever route you take, you’ll need to set up the web property in Google Analytics to receive the data. To do this, follow each step listed below: Under the admin settings (cog in the bottom left), click on the blue +CREATE PROPERTY button. If you don’t see the button, you need someone with edit permissions on the account to set this up for you Add a name for the property, and set the currency and timezone to match the currency and timezone in your Shopify store. This will ensure daily revenue and metrics closely match Shopify’s Click on the Show advanced options link and then toggle the switch on the right to Create a Universal Analytics property Then enter a website URL and opt to create a GA4 property as well if you need it Next, complete GA’s simple survey Once complete, Google will take you to the GA4 property first. So navigate back to the admin page, and find Property … Tracking Info … Tracking code Now you can copy the tracking ID starting with “UA-” Now that you have your GA property set up to receive data, it’s time to add Google Analytics to your Shopify store. Option 1: Shopify’s in-built tracker If you want to use Shopify admin to set up the tracking, you can paste that tracking ID straight in by following these steps: From Admin, go to Sales Channels .. Online Store … Preferences Paste in the tracking ID to Google Analytics account section and SAVE Note: You can ignore the "latest version" of Google Analytics. They mean Universal Analytics… see what I mean about it not being maintained? Option 2: Using Littledata You can follow Littledata's Getting Started guide to add Google Analytics to your Shopify store in a few minutes.  Without any extra effort on your part, Littledata gives you much more complete data in GA and weekly updates to your tracking as Google and Shopify launch new features. If you want to also send data to GA4, then simply reach out to Littledata’s support team after installing. [tip]See how Littledata's Google Analytics connection helps you fix your tracking while integrating with your other Shopify apps.[/tip] Option 3: Adding GA tags within Google Tag Manager (via GTM) If you prefer total control of how you add Google Analytics to Shopify, then using GTM could be the best option. Set up a new web container in GTM Copy the GTM container code to use in your store EITHER… Add the GTM container snippet to the theme.liquid file, just before the closing </head> tag. This will include the container in all pages except for the checkout and order confirmation page. (Note: Shopify Plus stores can also add the snippet to the checkout.liquid file to add to the checkout page) OR... use the box for ‘Additional Javascript’ to add it to all pages, including the order confirmation page (though this is being phased out for new stores). You need to leave out the starting <script> and ending </script> tags as this box is for Javascript, not HTML Create a new Google Analytics settings variable and paste in your Google Analytics tracking ID from above Enable Enhanced Ecommerce tracking for that variable Create a trigger for when the page DOM loads. This is considered a more reliable measure of the user ‘viewing’ a page than just firing it when GTM first loads Create a pageview tag using those settings and a trigger Tracking the “thank you page” with GTM The “thank you page” (or order completed page) is most critical to track; not just the pageview but the purchase value itself. First, you have to add the GTM container. In Shopify store preferences, if you still see the Additional Javascript box you can add the container code there. If not, you can also add the container in the Additional Scripts section of the checkout page. From your Shopify admin, go to Settings > Checkout Under Order processing, go to the Additional scripts text box Paste in the GTM container To send ecommerce data such as the order value and product SKUs to Google Analytics as well, you need to build a data layer based on the Shopify Order object. That is out of scope for what this guide covers. For a valid enhanced ecommerce transaction event, you’ll need at least the following fields: Order ID Order value Product IDs (or SKUs) [tip]Did you know? Littledata's app provides a GTM data layer for the order object, and a ready-made variable template to use that data in GTM.[/tip] Handling refunds and recurring orders Some customer events (like refunds) happen without an accompanying page view and are impossible to track with GTM, as there is no browser trigger to hook into. The only way to send them to Google Analytics is with a server-side Google Analytics integration—which is how Littledata works. This is also true for subscriptions, where recurring orders are sent directly to Shopify’s servers and are not part of a web session. If you want to track the Customer Lifetime Value from a subscription, not just the first subscription order, then Littledata handles recurring orders too. Handling GDPR consent management One more topic to consider if you want to add Google Analytics to Shopify using GTM is how to respect customers opting out of tracking, as is their right under European GDPR legislation (Shopify and Littledata’s tracking handle GDPR cookie consent already). Google released some support for Consent Management this year, but there is no standard integration with Shopify’s customer privacy API. So, you would need to set up triggers for when customers have opted into cookies manually. Again, this is out of scope for this guide. Top seven things to check after adding Google Analytics to Shopify Whichever method you choose, here are my tips to make sure you get the most accurate tracking.  Do you have duplicate tracking? If you add more than one Google Analytics tracker (maybe one via Shopify admin and one via GTM), then you’ll see an artificially low bounce rate (usually below 5%), since every page view is sent twice to Google Analytics. Is Google Analytics added to every page? This can be hard to check, but you can run through a typical shopping journey and view the real-time pageviews in Google Analytics. The most common issue is with landing page builders (e.g. Gem Pages and Zipify) which don’t use the same Shopify layout. Are you using the same Currency and Timezone as Shopify? Check your currency and timezone settings in Shopify by going to “Settings” > “General”. For any view in Google Analytics, use these currency and timezone settings. We have seen several store owners worry their sales were inaccurate in Google Analytics compared to Shopify, when the problem was actually that sales were pushed differently between days due to the disparity in these settings. Are all your country stores tracked? If you have multiple country stores for your brand, then we recommend adding the same Google Analytics property ID to all your stores. You can then create segments in Google Analytics to look at customers in just one country/domain. Do you see revenue attributed to your top marketing campaigns? Accurate marketing attribution could be blocked by certain third-party checkouts or payment gateways. Go to Acquisition … All Traffic … Channels report in GA and check that all the top campaigns you would expect to be generating sales have sales recorded against them. Is your internal traffic skewing the reports in GA? Your web developers, content writers and marketers will be heavy users of your own site. You need to filter this traffic out from your Google Analytics data to get a view of genuine customers or prospects. Have you set up filtered views for reporting? So you can still test the data capture, we recommend you set up a “Raw data” view in GA without filters, then add filters (for spam, internal traffic, etc.) in a reporting view. How to get the most from connecting Google Analytics to Shopify Whichever method you choose to get the reporting in Google Analytics, remember that good analytics is not a one-time activity. Every time you make a change to your store layout, traffic acquisition, or checkout options, you need to think about how this will impact your data collection—and the ability to report on your website performance. For a maintained, robust tracking solution you can try out free trial of Littledata’s Google Analytics app. For even greater setup support, talk to us about account management on a Plus Plan.

2021-07-20

Focusing on data-driven growth? There's a plan for that

We've spent a lot of time on the blog lately focusing on Littledata's Plus plans made for larger DTC brands, including headless setups. But what about those merchants who are not quite there yet, but poised for rapid growth? You guessed it, there's a plan for that. Littledata's new Grow plan is now available for Shopify stores sending data to Segment or Google Analytics. It comes with some solid perks, including priority support and the ability to track up to three country stores for one low price. [subscribe] How do you know if it's the right plan for your Shopify brand? As a modern data platform focused solely on ecommerce, Littledata tracks over 5 million orders per month for ecommerce brands around the world. So you might say we've seen it all. But there's no one-size-fits-all solution. There are a few different things to consider before choosing a modern data platform, and it's important to pick the right plan on that platform to make sure you have the support you need without any hidden fees or surcharges. Grow isn't designed for account management or analytics training. Those are only available on Littledata Plus. But it is designed to unlock the full potential of our data pipeline, at a lower cost. The ideal Grow plan user has a solid customer base, a proven product mix, and is ready for the next phase of growth. You are probably a good fit for Grow if: You have identified accurate data as a KPI or OKR (ie. have a company initiative to take data seriously, whether that came from identifying a Shopify/GA mismatch or a more general drive to make data-driven decisions this year) You have an in-house analyst or ecommerce manager who can make use of the data we send You are doing 7-10k orders per month (the Grow plan currently supports anywhere from 6-12k monthly orders, and in our experience 10k is the "sweet spot", an inflection point for DTC success) Are prepared (or preparing...) for rapid growth! Maybe you're planning a global expansion or getting ready to launch a long-awaited subscription product. Maybe you're just doubling down on marketing spend, but aren't yet sure how to track and understand your customer lifetime value. Grow plans are here to help you get accurate data so you can make better decisions, eliminate wasted spend, and double down on the ecommerce marketing that's working best. (How do you know what's working best? That's why we built Littledata). Learn more about Littledata pricing and find the plan that's right for you.

by Ari
2021-07-09

Podcast: How to fix your Shopify analytics with Littledata

How do you know if you're seeing the whole picture when it comes to your ecommerce analytics? Our CEO Edward Upton joined Keith Matthews, founder of Milk Bottle Labs, on their Shopify podcast to share how stores can conquer their data dilemmas and achieve exponential growth using accurate metrics. Listen to the full episode: Episode #48: Fix your analytics with Littledata As Shopify experts, Milk Bottle understands the critical role that analytics play in building a successful Shopify store. They're Ireland's only fully dedicated Shopify agency, but like many of our Shopify agency partners at Littledata, they help clients from around the world find the tools and information needed to craft the best Shopify store possible. During their chat, Edward and Keith discuss: How Littledata's years of experience as a fully remote company have helped us thrive What Littledata' Google Analytics connection brings to your store that Shopify's analytics dashboard doesn't What customer activity is important to track leading up to an order The importance of knowing your customers' lifetime value How General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and other privacy policies have impacted ecommerce stores What does Littledata show that Shopify's analytics dashboard doesn't? Early in the episode, Edward and Keith discuss why a store should add Littledata in the first place. The answer? It gives you critical information about the customer journey that Shopify's analytics dashboard doesn't. As Edward explains, Shopify's dashboard "does give you all the basics, like which products are sold, how many, how much you earned. But the problem is that it doesn't really give you enough detail on the actual customer journey to do serious conversion rate optimization or any sort of marketing mix analysis. So you just don't get deep enough about what series of events led up to an order and what were the different customer touchpoints. Yeah, you can see the last click that pulled (a customer) to an order. But, if someone buys a thousand-dollar couch, they don't just click on a Google ad and pay. It's a very considered decision, typically 15 or so touchpoints on average before someone would make a purchase. So knowing the last thing that pulled the customer there is almost useless. What you need to do is look at the whole journey in the marketing mix, all the different kinds of prospecting, retargeting, and engagement campaigns that got them to the eventual sale. And this is true for subscription e-commerce businesses, as well. It's very unlikely to be a sort of impulse purchase." How do cookie-blocking policies like GDPR affect Shopify store owners? New privacy policies like the EU's GDPR and California's Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) have restricted the ability for store owners to use cookies that track important customer activity. While the industry has been hurrying to adjust, Edward says that Littledata's server-side tracking is a strong solution for compliance. "Apple's basic belief — and I think Google's a bit on the fence, but may go down that path for Chrome as well — is that basically by default, users shouldn't be tracked. That as much of the sort of analytics-type tracking should be blocked as possible, which from the store owner's point of view is a disaster. Because, yeah, they don't want to track personal information about the user necessarily, but they do want to know in aggregate, 'how is my store performing?' and what [advertising] spend leads to sales. I think this is driving more and more stores into our arms because Littledata offers something quite different, which is server-side tracking, which doesn't rely on any of these. It bypasses these browser limitations." [subscribe] The Shopify podcast that helps you supercharge your store's analytics tracking Edward and Keith's conversation is filled with actionable insights that Shopify store owners can implement straight into their marketing efforts. Listen to the full episode to see how you can apply their advice to your store, or reach out to set up a demo with Littledata and learn how our powerful data connecters can springboard your ecommerce sales. After all, what good is a data-driven decision without accurate — or complete — ecommerce data?

2021-06-24

Is your Shopify cookie banner GDPR compliant?

A new set of privacy rules have transformed companies' online relationships with European clients. General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is here to stay, and whether you currently trade in Europe or plan to in the future, you need to make sure your website cookie usage complies with it. Fail, and your company could face some very big fines. How big, you ask? The penalties for getting GDPR compliance wrong are huge: the greater of €20M or 4% of your company's annual revenue. In one case, Vodafone Spain received €8M in fines in 2020 for violations relating to improper marketing data usage. The good news is that Littledata has you covered; GDPR compliance is as easy as installing our app. We'll show you exactly how Littledata helps you comply with GDPR and protects you from a major financial headache. But first, let's dive into the details of GDPR for ecommerce sites: how it works, what good and bad compliance look like, and how to check that your store is GDPR compliant. How does GDPR govern cookie usage? The European Union ePrivacy Directive (2009), together with GDPR (2018), make it compulsory to ask European internet users for informed consent before using cookies to store their personal data. In other words, a user needs to opt-in by clicking on a cookie banner or popup before a website can track their activity with analytics tools. This also gives the user the right to opt-out of their previous consent for cookie usage, and stop any tracking (known as revocable consent). How does GDPR cookie consent affect Google Analytics tracking? Each time a user triggers the Google Analytics script to load on your website, it adds a cookie (the _ga cookie) with an identifier to track the user across multiple pages and sessions. Next, it sends that cookie identifier to Google's servers, along with each page view and event. To be compliant with GDPR, you can't allow Google Analytics to add that cookie before the user has opted in. The problem here is that many online stores track users on Google Analytics before they consent to cookie usage. If they didn't, they could lose valuable marketing attribution by not tracking the user after they opt in. Littledata now has an easy way to get this right. How cookie banner consent should work Right now, the most common way to get informed consent from a user is to show them a cookie banner or popup explaining that your store uses cookies, then allow them to accept or reject being tracked. See this webinar for more discussion on the legality of different wording and displays you can use. Shopify's app store lists many such cookie banner apps, but just having the Accept Cookies button is not enough. Remember, you need to make sure that you do not track users before they opt in. To use the example given by Shopify's own banner app, when a visitor first lands on Kay Nine Supply's website they're shown a banner, and any tracking or setting of cookies has to wait. After the first page of the visit loads, the user has a choice: OK or No thanks. Users who click OK can be immediately tracked (even though it happens after the page load), and users that click No thanks must not be tracked. How Shopify's Customer Privacy API helps with cookie consent Shopify recognized stores had a problem trying to integrate with these myriad cookie consent apps. So, they created a Customer Privacy API where apps can share whether and when the user consented to be tracked. If you want to integrate Littledata's tracking with your cookie consent app, you need to make sure it's using this Customer Privacy API. That way when the user clicks to consent or not, their choice is shared first with Shopify, then with Littledata's tracking script. You will also need to change your store settings so that your store waits for the user to grant consent before tracking. Here's how to set that up: In your Shopify admin, click Online Store. Click Preferences > Customer privacy. Click Limit tracking for customers in Europe. How to configure Littledata to use the Customer Privacy API If you're already a Littledata customer, you can change to respectUserTrackingConsent in the LittledataLayer settings. We don't enable this by default due to the changes below. Our tracking script waits for the user to grant consent, then whenever that happens — on the first page or later — we send the tracking calls to either Google Analytics or Segment. The downside of GDPR cookie compliance for marketing attribution Complying with GDPR does come at a cost to marketing attribution, which is why Shopify and Littledata let you opt into this feature. For example, if your landing page contains UTM parameters in the link to track a campaign, and the user does not consent to tracking, then you will lose the source of the user's visit. If the user continues to checkout and purchase, Littledata's server-side tracking will record the sale without any link to the marketing campaign which brought them. In Google Analytics, these non-consenting users will appear in the "Direct" marketing channel (although in a future feature we are planning to clarify that they Opted Out). In reality, most users do consent for sites to track them, so this feature will limit but not remove all marketing attribution in Google Analytics or other tools. What more can your store do to comply with GDPR? Many of the cookie banners I've seen lack an option for the user to revoke consent or adjust their preference after the first page. I don't believe this has been tested in court, but some stores may want to go further and use a tool such as OneTrust PreferenceChoice to give users finer control over which cookies they want to allow and when. Littledata also integrates with OneTrust, making use of Shopify's Customer Privacy API. So, when the user consents to 'Cookies for performance' (category 2), we will start tracking on Google Analytics and stop when the user revokes consent. This requires the addition of another script. Here's an example of OneTrust setup with Age UK. When the user clicks "Accept all Cookies" Littledata's tracking starts. Then, if the user opts out of "Cookies for performance," the tracking stops. How does cookie consent relate to CCPA compliance? The California Consumer Protection Act (CCPA) does not require you to get cookie consent prior to tracking. CCPA does require stores to disclose what data they collect through cookies and what they do with the data (i.e. in your cookie policy) so users can opt out of their data being sold. Since there is no way you can sell personal data from Google Analytics, CCPA doesn't apply here. How can you check if your store is GDPR compliant? You'll need to be familiar with Chrome's developer tools to run these checks. Firstly, open your store landing page in an incognito window to make sure no cookies were previously stored. Next, leave the cookie banner or popup open and check that there is no _ga cookie... ...and that there is no network request to Google Analytics by searching for collect URL that Google uses: Then click to "accept cookies," but stay on the same page. You should now see: 1. The _ga cookie is present 2. A network request is sent to Google Analytics Didn't pass all these checks? Then you'll need Littledata's help to avoid those GDPR fines.

2021-06-18

Does Littledata work with Google Tag Manager?

Google Tag Manager (GTM) is a popular solution for adding marketing tags to your ecommerce website. But, it can be complex and time-consuming to set up — not to mention the cost and hassle of ongoing maintenance. Using Littledata’s direct analytics connectors helps you avoid this hassle by replacing GTM tags on your Shopify store. We also provide a GTM data layer for reuse with less common marketing tags. For many ecommerce stores, including larger Shopify Plus brands on Littledata Plus plans, Littledata eliminates the need for custom GTM setup by automatically tracking common marketing channels and ecommerce checkout flows. The same is true for DTC subscription brands, as Littledata's tracking automatically integrates with apps such as ReCharge, Bold Subscriptions, and Ordergroove. To show you how Littledata can replace GTM for your store, let's look at the situations where it replaces GTM and what you get from the tool itself. When will you not need Google Tag Manager? As more DTC brands move to streamlined ecommerce platforms such as Shopify and BigCommerce, they are looking for automated tracking solutions instead of custom tracking plans. Littledata’s connections easily replace GTM tags for: Google Analytics Google Ads Thanks to our robust, server-side tracking, you no longer need to maintain tagging for these data destinations. You can also forget worries about breaking the data layer and tags or tagging system when you change store themes. Plus, Littledata’s Shopify source for Segment can relay data to hundreds of additional destinations, replacing GTM for many use cases. For example, our recent updates include support for a broader range of data destinations, such as email marketing tools and CRMs. When will you still need Google Tag Manager? Any further marketing tags (e.g. Pinterest, TikTok, Twitter) will still need to be set up in Google Tag Manager. If you are on a Littledata Plus plan, we can help set up those tags to ensure accurate tracking for these additional marketing channels. We're working on rolling out better support for Facebook's Conversions API soon. This is essentially a server-side Facebook Ads connection, so we're excited about the possibilities. In the meantime, we have an out-of-the-box Facebook Pixel connector in the Pixel Perfect app. What Google Tag Manager triggers are available with Littledata? Littledata’s tracking script for Shopify stores adds lots of detailed events which you can use to build funnels or trigger other marketing tags in GTM. For this client-side tracking, we support all the standard ecommerce events except for add to cart (which is hard to track on the browser) and checkouts. [tip]From add-to-cart through the checkout, Littledata uses server-side tracking. Learn more about how this works for the Google Analytics and Segment destinations[/tip] So for GTM triggers, Littledata does support: Product list viewed Product list clicked Product detail viewed Thank you page Customer login We enable this additional event tracking because most marketing platforms need specific ecommerce data to enable retargeting ads, not just the page views. With Littledata, every time something triggers one of these events on your storefront, our script adds the associated product data to the GTM data layer like this: { "event": "view_item", "ecommerce": { "detail": { "products": [ { "id": "AD-01-white-5", "name": "ADIDAS | SUPERSTAR 80S", "price": "170.00", "brand": "ADIDAS", "category": "all", "variant": "5 / white", "list_name": "/products/adidas-superstar-80s", "handle": "adidas-superstar-80s", "shopify_product_id": "4169037742142", "shopify_variant_id": "30293803139134", "compare_at_price": "0.00", "image_url": "https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/0197/3698/5662/products/44694ee386818f3276566210464cf341.jpg?v=1571736156", "list_position": 4 } ] } }, } This helps with both marketing analysis and retargeting, as you can drill down to product-level data. Advanced users can get even more specific with GTM variables. What Google Tag Manager variables are available with Littledata? Littledata’s tracking script fetches product and customer data from Shopify and makes it available in the GTM data layer events (or the window.dataLayer array). To take advantage of this data, you can use GTM variables. What is a GTM variable? Google defines GTM variables like this: A variable is a named placeholder for a value that will change, such as a product name, a price value, or a date. We make it easy to choose the right variable for your tag using our GTM variable template. Common variables such as product SKU, price, and category are available with all product events. You can view the full list of variables here. [subscribe] What's the best practice for using Google Tag Manager with Shopify? Google Tag Manager works by first building a single container of all the triggers, tags, and variables, then loading that container on every page. This makes it easy to maintain, but on the downside every extra tag you add to the container increases the first-time page load speed for every visitor. Container bloat also makes GTM hard to maintain, as making a change might impact a lot of other tags. To keep your GTM container small and lean, we recommend you: Reuse variables across different tags where possible Reduce the amount of custom JavaScript variables (having a consistent data layer helps) Regularly review GTM to remove unused tags (quarterly works for most of our clients) If you have different country stores with very different marketing tags required, you might also consider having a different GTM container for each store and reusing Littledata's GTM variable. Is using Google Tag Manager on your Shopify store secure? I've written before about how to prevent GTM being hacked, and the tips are still relevant today. In short, GTM can be a security vulnerability — especially when you let untrusted 3rd party tracking providers load their own script on your checkout pages. You can reduce the risk by having a developer review your GTM setup and being especially careful on checkout pages. What's next for Littledata's Google Tag Manager support? We regularly add new events and properties to better support tagging, so please contact us if you have suggestions. We are also looking at supporting server-side GTM (sGTM). Server-side tagging has the advantage of reducing the code loaded onto web pages (see best practices above) and handles customer data more securely. Littledata's servers already process sensitive customer data on our servers, so server-side GTM is a good fit with our philosophy of making tagging more robust and secure. In the meantime, I recommend you check out the Shopify to Segment connection, which provides these same server-side benefits without maintaining your own servers to host the tracking.

2021-06-15

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