Littledata’s V8 Shopify Tracking Code: faster and more versatile

As experts in web analytics for ecommerce sites, we often tinker with our data collection ‘engine’ to get the best results. In the latest iteration of our tracking code, we’re proud to announce some major improvements. Littledata's V8 Shopify Tracking Code comes with exciting improvements in three major areas: data accuracy, page speed, and versatility. These new changes will affect both our Google Analytics and Segment tracking code for Shopify sites, plus any stores using our data layer to trigger events in Google Tag Manager (GTM). Here's a quick rundown of the update: Improvements for accuracy We improved the way we track key events so that: Product list views are sent only as users scroll down the page and view a product for more than 300 milliseconds (the minimum time it takes the human brain to process an image) Product list views and clicks have more accurate position information to help optimize product sort order Search pages are also tracked as product lists Social shares and clicks on product images on product detail pages are tracked These new improvements follow other recent improvements  we've added, which include: Using the latest gtag and GTM libraries Tracking page views only when the page was actually viewed [subscribe] Improvements for page speed Our research on performance has shown that faster page load speed is linked with better ecommerce conversion rates. With this in mind, we're reducing the time it takes to load the tracking script. Here's how we're doing it: A much smaller data layer for product list pages, especially for stores with lots of product data Minified tracking code, hosted on a content delivery network (CDN) Moved to server-side tracking of add-to-carts, resulting in a smaller script in the browser Removed dependency on jQuery As an example, let's imagine a product listing page has 30 products. Previously, the total Javascript data layer size would have been ~100Kb, but after the update would be less than 20Kb — up to 5x zippier! Improvements for versatility Tracking adds-to-cart is surprisingly hard. While this is partly due to add-to-cart buttons being targeted by many other scripts, the main culprit is something else — many online stores have a mini-cart or a separate checkout button. This means users may never actually see a 'cart' page at all. Our new V8 Tracking Code bypasses this issue by tracking cart updates from Shopify’s servers without generating any extra or cost for your web servers. This means that whenever an online shopper adds or removes your product from their cart — whether by clicking on desktop or swiping on mobile — that action will be tracked with 100% accuracy. How do I get this update? [Update] V8 is now out of private beta — this means all Shopify stores using the Littledata app are now updated to use the new tracking code. This updated script, as well as all future improvements, is included with your ongoing Littledata subscription. Just sit back, relax, and enjoy automatically accurate data about your Shopify store performance. What if I need to keep the previous script version? That's fine too. Just reach out to our support team before 21st August and we can make sure you don't get the V8 script.

2019-06-11

Announcing our new Shopify app for Segment users

Littledata's new Shopify app for Segment tracks sales and browsing behavior automatically, so you can focus on growth. Thousands of online businesses use Segment to clean, collect and control customer data. Littledata's Segment connection fixes ecommerce tracking automatically, and sends that data to your Segment workspace. Our Shopify-to-Segment connection is the newest source in the Segment catalog, joining over 200 powerful integrations. We've always loved Segment, and with a growing number of shared customers (larger ecommerce sites using both Segment and Littledata), building a seamless connection was a no-brainer.  Automated ecommerce tracking Like our Google Analytics connection for Shopify stores, our Segment connection uses server-side tracking to capture every step in your checkout flow, plus sales, refunds, product variants, and more.  It's the easiest way to ensure accurate, detailed data about sales and shopping behaviour. In fact, Littledata is the only recommended Segment integration for Shopify and Shopify Plus! Benefits include: Works with any Shopify or Shopify Plus store Server-side tracking for 100% accuracy Captures every touch point, including checkout steps, sales data and customer lifetime value (CLV) Analytics audit to check for accurate tracking The connection captures what happens on your Shopify store, then pushes that data to Segment so you can send it to hundreds of Segment destinations. Customers use this for marketing automation, campaign personalization, ecommerce optimization, reporting and analysis. For example, you can push your Shopify data to tools including Hubspot, Salesforce, Mixpanel and Google Analytics. Browse our Segment help guides for details about which events you can track with our Segment connection. [subscribe heading="Best Shopify app for Segment users" button_text="Free trial"  button_link="https://apps.shopify.com/segment-com-by-littledata"] Getting started Getting started is easy. If you don't already have a Littledata account, you can download Littledata's Shopify app for Segment users directly from the Shopify app store - with free trials on all plans! If you're already using Littledata, you can add the Segment connection from the Connections tab in your Littledata admin. Questions? Our enterprise plans now include the option for custom Segment data audits, setup and reporting. We're here to help you scale.

by Ari
2019-05-30

Littledata featured on the Honest Ecommerce podcast for Shopify stores

I recently stopped by the Honest Ecommerce podcast to give listeners the lowdown on ecommerce analytics. Check it out to learn how to fix tracking for Shopify stores! Get the free podcast episode here: Ep. 21 - How To Track Shopify Sales & Marketing (In A Way That Is Accurate & Useful) Honest Ecommerce is one of the fastest growing podcasts for Shopify and Shopify Plus store owners, from the good folks at Electric Eye agency in Columbus, Ohio. While the episode is focused on tips for Shopify stores, we chat about ecommerce tracking for every type of store, whatever platform and business model you're using, and how to do more with less, rather than getting bogged down in too much -- or inaccurate -- data. In the episode we cover: Why we started Littledata and the journey so far What is wrong with your data? (Does your Shopify data match what you see in Google Analytics?) What KPIs should you be looking at in Google Analytics? Using data to drive your business Analytics audits & ecommerce benchmarking How our integrations work, including Facebook Ads, ReCharge and Refersion Littledata's new Segment app for Shopify stores How to connect Facebook Ads data with Google Analytics automatically Which types of ecommerce sites get the most out of Littledata? And much more! :) Check it out and let us know what you'd like to hear about in our next podcast appearance. Haven't tried Littledata yet? Explore our connections or sign up for a free trial today. Transcript [00:00:01.750] - AriYou don't want to start redesigning the site or changing your product line based on a really limited sample because it could be just random. So the more data you can get, the more you can make sophisticated decisions. [00:00:16.300] - AnnetteWelcome to Honest Ecommerce, where we are dedicated to cutting through the b.s. and finding actionable advice for online store owners. [00:00:24.000] - ChaseI'm your host, Chase Clymer [00:00:26.050] - Annetteand I'm your host, Annette Grant [00:00:28.660] - Bothand we believe running an online business does not have to be complicated or a guessing game. [00:00:33.160] - AnnetteIf you are struggling into scaling your sales electric I is here to help to apply to work with us. Today's episode of Honest Eommerce. We welcome the co-founder of Littledata, Ari Messer. [00:00:53.930] - ChaseHe's going to explain to us that our data is broken and how to fix it. [00:01:04.310] - ChaseHey everybody welcome back to yet another episode of Honest Ecommerce. I do want to take one second to say thank you to everyone that's actually listening to it. I've gotten so many e-mails from people or just correspondents where people are like "we actually listened to your podcast. Like I learned something from your podcast." So now I have proof that I'm not just talking into the cloud. [00:01:23.240] - AnnetteWell Chase I hate to break it to you. That's me. I've made a lot of aliases and I'm emailing you to make you feel good about yourself. [00:01:29.360] - ChaseCool. Well then that's a bummer (laughs). Anyways welcome to Honest Ecommerce. [00:01:34.730] - ChaseI'm Chase Clymer, this is my co-host Annette Grant. And today we welcome to the show Ari from Littledata. He is going to kick our butts into gear with Google Analytics. Welcome to the show Ari, and let us know how you know so much about analytics. [00:01:49.130] - AriIt's good to be here. And I actually have I haven't created any aliases but I have the show that I've heard so far. I think it's great to have something here that's, you know, merchants really find useful and find that other agencies and partners too. [00:02:02.910] - ChaseSo yeah I just don't like to blow smoke up people's butts I like it to be honest and real. It takes hard work. [00:02:09.320] - AriYes. Yeah I think there's a lot more space for that now. If you can speak intelligently to people, they'll pay attention. [00:02:17.360] - AriThe more you learn about analytics, the more there is to know (laughs). Basically I joined Littledata as a co-founder a few years ago, and we've been on Shopify for about two years now. We're adding a lot of connections, the main ones being to Google Analytics. So what I knew before joining was really about how analytics could be used to help people grow a SaaS app, because they really were in the startup space a lot and now have learned more and more about analytics for ecommerce. So that's what we're here to talk about today. [00:02:53.150] - ChaseAwesome. So what was that transition like? How did you go from helping SaaS companies to building Littledata. [00:03:00.230] - AriYeah, it was really a natural transition. As we all know, ecommerce is huge. It's growing in all directions, it's continuing to grow and not just in the US, but all around the world. I'd had some cool gigs helping SaaS companies build out integrations. I used to work mostly on the product marketing side. Now, being this close to the company, I sort of do all kinds of things. It was really a lot of those integrations were either directly ecommerce-related or something that was sort of peripherally commerce-related, like helping build out an integration to do retargeting for card abandonment and stuff like that. [00:03:41.390] - AriAnd then with Littledata I met Edward Upton, the original founder in London, and kind of came on and as a Google Analytics consultant at first and just thought, "oh wow, this is a really cool idea — you're actually helping people fix their data, not just report on it." [00:03:57.590] - ChaseSo what is one of those common mistakes that you guys were seeing out there with the data? What's broken with my data? [00:04:08.370] - AriWe do have an audit tool that people can plug in and sort of get a sense for what might be tracked correctly and what's not. So there are all kinds of things that can go wrong. I think for Shopify stores in particular, there's often a mismatch between how sales are being calculated. So that includes different parts of the checkout funnel, when types of products or product groups people are adding to cart that are not purchased, and all the way through actual sales and refunds. [00:04:42.870] - ChaseI can agree with that. I noticed there's always a mismatch between the number in Google Analytics and the number in Shopify. [00:04:49.790] - AriAbsolutely. And with our app, we basically fix that issue. You know sometimes, you have to do a few more connections and activate some of our plugins (like if you're using ReCharge to do subscription sales or whatever it might be). But basically, what the app does, (not to get too geeky) is use server-side tracking so that every single user action and every sale is tracked in Google Analytics. So what you see in Shopify will match what you see in GA. [00:05:22.170] - AnnetteSo you can get yours to match Google Analytics? [00:05:26.610] - AriYeah, I would say 99.9%. [00:05:30.780] - AnnetteWow. So if people if things aren't tracking properly, is it because the developer didn't set up Google Analytics correctly? Let's kind of peel it back for for our listeners. If they're looking at their Google Analytics, what are some red flags where they would be in need of "pick your theme and get it in the app." Google Analytics sometimes gets very confusing, so walk me through what are the top things to look at and what needs to be fixed? [00:06:13.260] - AriThe main thing is just like Chase was mentioning that just raw sales numbers like when you look at the number in your bank account maybe doesn't match what's Shopify shows. And that doesn't match what's in Google Analytics. So that's definitely a red flag because if you're looking at any sort of marketing campaign — I know we're all getting more and more sophisticated about using audiences and all this stuff like fancy stuff for retargeting and trying to sort of sell people stuff that they're more likely to want to buy — often, you go in there and look and say "well this campaign seems to have worked really well, and yet, the overall sales number is not matching what should be the number of conversions that we got. So it's any kind of mismatch like that, when you're like "this just doesn't seem right." And then of course as you grow, being off by a couple percent can means more and more amount of money. So any kind of mismatch is kind of the thing to look for. [00:07:15.670] - ChaseYeah I mean it's just a snowball effect. Like "oh it's just a few dollars" but that can add up. [00:07:20.760] - AriAnd I wouldn't blame the developers for a lot of it. Some of it's just that Shopify's native tracking and their native Google Analytics integrations are fine, but they're just not that sophisticated. And as we all know, part of that's because they have this really awesome app ecosystem. So you kind of have to find the right tools to make sure it works so that nothing is missing. I mean, I've been guilty of it too, not tagging campaigns consistently, like when you're making your Facebook campaigns and then you start to add more, like the snowball effect. Like how do you really organize them or make sure everything's tracked right? [00:08:03.980] - ChaseThere's just so much in there. So I just want to bring it down to simplify it a bit for our listeners. So, you know, I've got Joe's shoe shop. We're selling sneakers and we're real business. This isn't like a side hustle, this is my full time job. What are the KPIs I should be looking at in Google Analytics? Let's just try to educate people about Google Analytics a bit. [00:08:28.600] - AriSo one thing you should be looking at is how detailed...like if you start to wonder "is this product group performing well?" so stuff that's sort of outside normal questions about overall how's the business doing. So stuff like payment cart abandonment, products being added to the cart, particular pages getting more views than other pages. What are some of the basic thing is that make sense? Like it's the sort of details if you think about merchandising or you're thinking about the next season or what you're going to do for a promotion if you want to go in and look in GA to try to figure out a data-driven view of of what to sell or what to promote or things that might get more subscriptions. [00:09:26.500] - AriLet's say the shoe business is on subscription, running shoes where you've got a new one every month or every quarter or something. You'd want to go into GA and be able to see the type of product that you should promote. [00:10:55.390] - ChaseI think a common oversight with analytics is "it's just data." It's just a bunch of numbers and you have to extrapolate from those numbers and make inferences. You use that data to drive your business and if there isn't like a on-size-fits-all approach to it, it's definitely business-specific. [00:11:20.650] - AriYeah for sure. And so for us, you know with Littledata, what the app does is first, fix the tracking, so then for your particular business, you can go in and figure out the key metrics to to pay attention to. With ReCharge, I'm sure you have a lot of clients doing subscription business. And we're definitely seeing a lot of people that are either experimenting with subscriptions or that's like all of what they do, you know for like athletic supplements or workout clothes or whatever it is. [00:11:52.240] - AriI'm just bringing it up but I think it's a really good sort of case study in how a basic fix in analytics can really help. And you might want to just see if your advertising campaigns are leading to more first time purchases or recurring purchases, like people signing up to get stuff every month. And unless you've set up tracking correctly for the checkout flow, you'll go into Google Analytics...you could be running your company for years and go in (to GA) and suddenly realize there's no way to see that that split. [00:12:29.870] - ChaseYeah that's definitely important information. [00:12:32.720] - AnnetteThis might be a left field question, but can the app at all help with search engine optimization like work the organic there if things are behind the scenes are running smoother? Like could it help you notice things that would help you rise to the top a little bit more? [00:12:51.440] - AriIt's definitely not the main focus, but we do have some fixes (both sort of audit checks) and actually website benchmarks against other sites which you can also see in the app, against Shopify stores and things. For technical performance stuff like page load speed, it actually does have a big effect on SEO. [00:13:12.810] - AnnetteOh cool. So just to make sure I understand this, inside the app, you will have competition in there and I could see like their page speed load compared to mine? [00:13:22.070] - AriExactly. [00:13:22.170] - AnnetteOh that's awesome. OK. Now that's that's a huge value. [00:13:26.460] - AriYeah. We have those benchmarks broken down by sector, so you could look and say (obviously you can't see the actual stores it's all anonymized, I should say that upfront) but you could go in and say against other people selling shoes with an average order value around one hundred dollars per purchase, "is this a good page load speed, is this a good conversion rate?" stuff like that. [00:13:53.300] - AnnetteThat's really valuable. [00:13:53.410] - ChaseIt is. So there's data everywhere. Is it only Google Analytics you guys are taking a look at? [00:14:00.220] - AriSo the main app does connect with Google Analytics. Our main Shopify app is called Google Analytics by Littledata. By the time this podcast comes out, hopefully we will have launched an app for Segment. So Segment is sort of a connector between all kinds of different apps and platforms. And what this app will do is pull Shopify data, and again making sure everything's tracked correctly (checkout steps, sales, etc.) and pull that into Segment, so then you can connect it from Segment to any destination, which includes Google Analytics. [00:14:46.640] - ChaseThat's wonderful. Yeah I'm over here on the website and I see there's so many connections you guys have set up. [00:14:51.160] - AriCool, yeah. We're building out more, so to the listeners, if there are things you'd like to see, or if you've found a particular analytics problem, let us know and maybe we can fix it or help you find a way to automate or automatically check if it's working or not. [00:15:11.540] - AnnetteDo you want to explain those connections. Like I'm actually looking at your site right now too. So if I were to call in to see if I could get the app, what are some of those things that you would talk, about like the Facebook Ads connection that you have? [00:15:22.710] - AriSure yeah. So basically, for all the connections other than Segment, first you connect to Google Analytics. We're using that as sort of the ultimate source of truth. We always recommend to clients that it's good to gather lots of data and you want to be able to get detailed, but you really want to focus on just a couple of core metrics that are most important (like we were saying earlier) to your business. [00:15:59.700] - AriSo for some people, that will be how their Facebook Ad cost contributes to a particular detail about sales for one kind of product or a new product type or sales type or whatever it is. So what the Facebook Ads connection does is actually pull your ad costs and campaign details into GA so that then you don't have to rely on what Facebook is telling you in terms of how well the ad has performed and how many conversions you got. Instead, you can look and say "oh this campaign actually led to people adding a bunch of this type of product to the cart" or "it ended up leading to X amount of subscription revenue" [00:16:41.740] - ChaseSo you can drill down to the product level to see what had been added to the card from that campaign. [00:16:48.590] - AriExactly. Google makes that pretty easy to do with their own products, but they make it fairly complicated for people using other platforms. And so what a connection like that does is pull in the Facebook data and then suddenly plug that in along with everything else. [00:17:04.710] - ChaseCan I use this app to also see that information from Google AdWords and Google Shopping? [00:17:09.600] - AriYou can. The AdWords connection works a little different whereas it's pulling...I mean the effect is similar, but it actually lets you pull your Google Analytics data into AdWords so you can see sales again...like product sales next to campaign performance. [00:18:20.720] - ChaseWell I'm one hundred percent going to do a demo of this app. This is awesome. [00:18:25.160] - AnnetteYeah I have a question...Chase, you might be able to answer this too. So for instance, are my Facebook Ads currently connected to Google Analytics automatically, or do you have to have an app like Littledata to do that for you? [00:18:41.420] - AriI'd have to take a look at yours in particular, but in general, unless you've gone through and set it up, no they won't be. You might have Facebook as a source, but that won't give you much detail. [00:18:54.640] - AnnetteRight because, specifically going back to what you guys just talked about, I have an ad running right now for a piece of equipment that's a higher dollar and I'm making sales not the ad, but I'm not selling that particular product and I want to drill down and see exactly what I'm selling off of the ad, but I can't do that in Facebook Ads but this would enable me to do that, correct? [00:19:18.940] - AriExactly. That's the perfect test. Yeah. [00:19:21.080] - ChaseAnd you can take it one step further and see if those people are viewing that expensive product for a long time or create a segment to retarget those people and educate those people. Set up some drip campaigns if you have their email? [00:19:37.360] - AriExactly super smart. It's kind of like maybe they're not buying it but they actually were really interested in it. They're like "oh I'll try this first" [00:19:46.890] - ChaseAnd then it's your job to market them and educate them. Here's the thing, I think with just any advertising campaigns, people go for the kill, like instantly it's "buy this buy this buy this." You need to explain what the product is first and educate them about the product, especially if it's an expensive product. No one's just going to drop one hundred dollars plus on something that they didn't know existed before your ad. [00:20:12.500] - AnnetteThey won't drop 500 not knowing what it is? (laughs) [00:20:15.150] - AnnetteI'm going to run this ad, new product 30 days and do it. But what's happening (exactly my issue, so sign me up for the Littledata app today) because I don't know what they're buying. They're not buying the high dollar, they're buying other products and I want to see how that ad is tricking down to that. That's something before we even started this conversation — I didn't know that that connection would do that. [00:20:42.740] - ChaseWe have clients ask all the time to drill down like, what are people doing from the ad if they're not...It's like yeah you made money off the ad your turned out fantastic but they're like cool, like what were they buying? There's no easy way to see that in Facebook. [00:20:56.000] - AriTotally. And even when we started Littledata, we didn't realize that at first. And as we started working with more companies, we were doing custom setups with Google Tag Manager to try to figure this out, and then we were like "wait a sec. If we could just build something that would pull this into Google Analytics, voila." [00:21:16.320] - AnnetteThat is so valuable. My brain is kind of rocked. That's awesome. [00:21:23.960] - ChaseYeah you just ruined Annette's weekend. Now she's going play with this. [00:21:31.610] - ChaseIt takes time to get data that you can make a decision from. You don't need to be looking your data everyday. Unless you're getting so many page views and sessions a day, which is top tier million dollar companies, you don't have enough data to make a decision from 24 hours ago. Even with ads, if you're not spending thousands of dollars a day you know your ads run for like a week before you see what the hell is going on. [00:22:03.040] - AnnetteActually Chase, you taught me that. Like this specific ad that I'm running right now...t's what, the twenty eighth of the month? We started running it at the beginning and I said "hey I'm not even going to look at this. Let's just let it roll, like let's not even look at." I looked at it yesterday and I was like "wait, what's happening here?" I would know if I sold that high dollar product. We didn't. And I'm like I'm just going to let this roll for a while just not even pay attention to it and focus on everything else. And when I looked at it yesterday...we're selling stuff, we're not selling that product, the ad is working, but how? [00:22:32.730] - ChaseYeah the attribution on Facebook is unique in and of itself...and honestly you can get some sketchy agencies that make that thing really long. And they get that attribution up and they're like "Yeah, we made you all this money" but you're like where is it? Where's that money? [00:22:52.300] - AriYeah. [00:22:52.370] - AnnetteBeing a store owner, I have wonderful developers that I work with but sometimes I try to do some of this stuff myself. So when I now, after my mind's been blown and I get the app, is this something that you need to have a developer connect for you, or is it easy enough for a DIY store owner to do themselves? [00:23:17.790] - AriYeah we've definitely tried to make it easy enough. And the good thing is for Shopify (and we do have clients on other platforms like Magento, BigCommerce) it's fully automated. So unless you have a really customized theme (in which case we do have separate setup steps where our support team can help you) it all should just happen automatically [00:23:39.020] - AnnetteAnd that is for Facebook Ads also? [00:23:41.340] - AriYeah. [00:23:42.560] - AnnetteOh wow. OK. [00:23:44.030] - AriIt'll give you a guide in the app. You'll have to make sure that the campaigns have been named in a certain way. There's some things we can't do automatically. But for those few things that we can't do it, it gives very clear steps. [00:24:00.760] - ChaseSo what size stores does this make sense for? [00:24:07.720] - AriI always say anyone who wants to grow should start tracking things early, because otherwise you'll get to a point where you can't go back and get a start date if the tracking wasn't set. Basically once you start to introduce traffic, our basic plan runs up to about five hundred orders per month. We have the pricing tiered based on sessions, orders or sales, but the number of orders is a pretty good indicator. So once you're starting to get traffic and have some orders come through, it's a good time to go with it. And then for our enterprise plans, where we do help with custom setup and reporting and things as needed, those are generally larger — you know, bigger DTC brands doing maybe five to 50 million a year. [00:24:55.020] - AnnetteAwesome. Just for our listeners (this is something I always like when apps offer this), Littledata offers a twenty five percent off discount if you pay the annual fee upfront so you can save some serious dollars. [00:25:09.330] - AriOh yeah. Hey you're doing my job for me! That's a good point. [00:25:13.420] - AnnetteIt's always nice to be rewarded if you're going to pay for something upfront, as a consumer. [00:25:22.160] - AriYeah. And we do find like Chase was saying, it takes a while to start gathering the data for advertising campaigns, and also just for understanding user flows on your site because you really need a lot of information. You don't want to start redesigning the site or changing your product line based on a really limited sample, because it could be just random. So the more data you can get, the more you can make sophisticated decisions. [00:25:47.740] - ChaseAwesome. I think that is the gem of the podcast right there. And with that I think we're going to wrap this one up. [00:25:54.700] - ChaseIs there anything that you want to leave with our guests? I know everyone probably want to go check out the app. It's Littledata.io slash Shopify (90 percent of our listeners are probably on Shopify). [00:26:05.430] - AriYeah, nothing in particular...ifyou're using ReCharge, our Shopify ReCharge connection is really powerful will probably solve a lot of tracking issues that you thought couldn't be solved. So check that out. And that's about it. It's a great podcast. Good to be here. [00:26:23.970] - AnnetteNo, thank you! I do appreciate it. You actually answered the question I was going to ask Chase after the podcast (laughs). [00:26:30.500] - ChaseI hate when we have podcasts when it's like a sales letter, but for this app, it's just so fancy — it works. It solves problems and that's what people want. [00:26:41.840] - AnnetteActually it's solving problems I didn't even know there was a solution for. So that's exciting. Thank you Ari. We appreciate having you on today. [00:26:52.690] - AriOh and you just one more thing...If anyone has questions, even if they don't need the app, we do a lot on our blog around analytics issues. So feel free to write to us with topics you'd like covered and we'll sort of investigate. [00:27:09.790] - ChaseOh cool awesome I'll check that. I'll check the blog out too. Awesome. Well thanks a lot.

by Ari
2019-05-29

5 best Shopify apps for Instagram ads and sales

When it comes to social profiles, most ecommerce marketers choose to highlight their products on Instagram. But how can you turn your Instagram marketing into consistent sales growth for your online store? Instagram gets over two times the engagement on photos versus all other social platforms. You’ll also find that more than one in three internet users interact with social media to find more information on a brand or product. Due to this, ecommerce stores are turning to Instagram for not only engagement but also for launching ads. This process is made simple by connecting an Instagram profile with Facebook, making it easy to convert the Instagram profile into a business one. This allows you to launch ads on Instagram, while all the data is directly connected to your Facebook account. Once you’ve created a promotion you have the ability to send it to your Instagram profile, your website, or your Facebook page. You can also create Instagram promotions directly from Facebook’s self-serve advertising platform. Some of the benefits of Instagram advertising include scalable pricing, control of who you’re targeting, and instant ads. As with Facebook Ads, you can define the goals by reach, traffic, and brand awareness. Gone are the days when Instagram was used just for engagement, it’s now a frontrunner for sales. Below are the apps that we’ve chosen based on rankings and reviews. 5 best Shopify apps for Instagram ads So here they are: the top 5 apps. If you're using Instagram to market your brand, these can help you increase sales and customer lifetime value. Much like our previous post where we dug into 15 Shopify apps that would help you increase AOV, we’ve taken the same approach to look into 5 Shopify apps that can help you increase your sales and deliver results. We searched for top-ranked apps to give you the best tools and ensure your ecommerce site is using Instagram to its full extent. 1. Instagram Shop by Snapppt Quick pitch: Shoppable galleries, UGC, find influencers & build communities Snapppt is a free, Instagram approved app that allows you to make your Instagram feed shoppable. That’s right, shoppers can now buy directly from your Instagram feed - now shoppers can instantly click on a pair of earrings they thought were great and buy them. An example would be South Beach Swimsuits, in the image below you can see how within the photo you can view the product displayed and shop for that item directly from Instagram. Snapppt also gives brands the ability to track their customers from the point of seeing an Instagram image all the way to checkout. While Instagram is testing out their own checkout, called simply Checkout, we still think Instagram shop is a better fit for Shopify stores. It's a must-have for brands looking to add to their sales pipeline. Happy scrolling! 2. Kit Quick pitch: Run better Facebook ads Kit is an official Facebook Marketing Partner that integrates with Facebook and Instagram. Kit's been owned by Shopify since 2016, so obviously it's a great fit for any Shopify store looking for smart automation! What is Kit? It's a virtual marketing assistant that can manage your Facebook Ads, Instagram ads, social posts, and email marketing to help you drive sales. Need help creating discount codes and targeting customers? Kit is really helpful with that - all you need to do is communicate via SMS or Facebook Messenger. Just type in some commands and Kit will be ready for duty. It also works with other Shopify apps like Yotpov and Venntov. Kit will make your life easier when it comes to managing ads and can even help you generate reports for sales. Hire an assistant or get a free assistant with Kit? Tough choice, big reward. 3. Google Analytics by Littledata Quick pitch: Google Analytics app with Facebook Ads & ReCharge connections Littledata's Shopify app fixes your tracking automatically and gives you accurate data. Once you install, all you have to do is connect your Facebook Ads account using our Facebook integration. Using that Facebook integration, we'll show you the real ROI of your Instagram ads - and connect ad performance to buying behavior, like adds-to-cart and recurring purchases. That’s right - since your Instagram ads data is found in Facebook Manager, all you need to do is connect Facebook Ads and you’ll get that data imported right into your Google Analytics account. Simple, right? That’s what we thought as well. After you connect, that data will be seamlessly pulled into your overall ecommerce tracking, so you can see if your Instagram promotions lead to purchases and conversions, or just a lot of ‘window shopping'. [subscribe heading="Connect Instagram Ads to Google Analytics" background_color="grey" button_text="free trial"] 4. Vantage Quick pitch: Automated Facebook & Google Ads for Your Ecommerce Store Vantage uses your Shopify data to help you better target and retarget audiences based on customer interests, behavior and purchase history. For example, if you sell sports clothes and health vitamins, you can automatically run Instagram ads aimed at people who are interested in health, vitamins and sports apparel. This makes sure that your ads are seen by the optimal shopper. Vantage helps Shopify merchants understand shopping behavior using insights from your store. It allows you to personalize content using highly targeted and automated Facebook, Instagram, and Google Ads, all of which Vantage integrates with. It also auto-optimises, so you won’t waste money on ads that aren’t performing well. It will reallocate your budget so that you're focusing on the right channels and best placements. Vantage allows you to target ads based on demographics, interests, as well as online behavior - leading to even better results for your Instagram ads. With more successful ads you’ll be able to bring more people to your site and your Instagram page. 5. Stamped.io Reviews Quick pitch: Get product reviews, site reviews, photo/video reviews and Q&A Stamped.io Reviews takes your customers words or content and uses it to increase your sales. It’s an easy three-step process as you can search Instagram for the photos you want to add to your gallery, tag them with items from your store and showcase those by creating a gallery. You have complete control over the contents of the gallery, which can includes images that are posted by customers. As people are interacting with your Instagram feed or the gallery on your site or blog they are able to see the products in one place instantly. This also allows for a smarter marketing strategy as you’re using user content to your advantage to drive traffic. All of these Shopify apps add something special to make sure that your Instagram is performing at its best. They can lead you to a more successful marketing strategy due to smarter ads, ad cost analysis, and a directly shoppable Instagram feed. Let’s remember that Instagram has 58% more engagement than Facebook and 75% of Instagram users take an action after seeing an engaging post. You don’t want to miss out on those numbers, so optimise your Instagram for success today!

2019-04-03

Shopify vs Magento: Ecommerce performance

Whether you're choosing a new enterprise ecommerce platform for your online business, or considering a platform migration, choosing Shopify vs Magento is not an easy choice. But when it comes to ecommerce performance, it pays to take a look at the data. Littledata has a range of customers on different ecommerce platforms, with a majority of larger stores using Shopify Plus or Magento. So which platform has the best ecommerce performance? For this post, we crunched data from 1,600 Shopify and Magento stores to see where the platforms typically perform best, from technical performance essentials like site speed, to ecommerce essentials like conversion rate and average order value. Ecommerce benchmarks Littledata benchmarks stores using our platform on 30 key metrics. Any merchant can sign up to benchmark their ecommerce website, and we like to dive into the benchmark data to find key stats and unexpected trends. Comparing Shopify vs Magento benchmarks, we looked at the median performance of stores of all sizes in all sectors, and then just larger stores (those getting more than 20,000 sessions per month). The headline news is that Shopify converts more visitors into customers than Magento, mainly due to better add-to-cart rate, but also slightly more efficient checkout conversion rate. Shopify stores have a higher Average Conversion Rate, but Magento stores have a higher Average Order Value However, since Magento stores have a larger average order (maybe because stores selling high value items are put off by Shopify’s percentage pricing) the Magento stores get more revenue per visit. And it is really the higher customer lifetime value that you should care about (Shopify agrees). Magento stores outperform on landing page engagement and marketing, and have a significantly higher usage of product search. Shopify vs Magento: a benchmark-by-benchmark comparison Average conversion rate The headline ecommerce conversion rate is better on Shopify (2% vs 1.7%) and this actually widens for larger stores (2.3% Shopify vs 1.5% on Magento). This is reflected in Shopify being better on both underlying metrics of performance: add-to-cart rate (5.5% vs 4.6%) and the percent of those starting to checkout. [subscribe button_text="benchmark your site"] The checkout completion rate is actually better on most Magento stores (48.6% vs 51.3%), although for larger stores this is flipped around (50.0% Magento vs 48.7% Shopify). Average order value Average revenue per customer is much higher for the Magento stores surveyed (and this difference persists for larger sites) - $75 USD per customer on Shopify vs $161 on Magento. This is driven by both a higher average order value, and more repeat purchasing on Magento stores. This extra money per order more than compensates for the lower conversion rate on Magento, and means Magento stores get an average $2.79 per visit versus $1.52 for Shopify store visits. Site speed There are two factors to website speed - how long the server takes to response, and how long the page takes to render in the browser. Shopify's cloud infrastructure is better at the former (609 milliseconds versus 967 milliseconds average server response time on Magento), but for the more important delay before page content appears there is little difference between the platforms (2.6 seconds for Shopify vs 2.8 seconds for Magento). Larger Shopify stores do typically install lots of 3rd party apps, which can increase the script load time, and so the time to full page load is higher on larger Shopify stores (6.8 seconds vs 6.0 seconds on Magento). Marketing channels There are some big differences between how Shopify and Magento store owners go about Marketing. Shopify stores get a far higher proportion of traffic from Facebook (5.8% vs 2.7%), but this is still below the global average for Facebook referrals. Shopify stores also had a greater reliance on the homepage - showing a lack on content marketing sophistication (34% on Shopify vs 25% on Magento). User engagement (site search and email marketing) The interesting difference is a much higher use of site search for Magento stores (3.1% Shopify vs 10.8% Magento). This may that Magento themes make it easier to implement site search, or that Magento stores with larger numbers of SKUs. And Magento marketers manage to get a lower bounce rate from emails: 50% on Shopify vs 44% on Magento. This is maybe due to a greater variety of email landing pages or campaigns. What about Shopify Plus vs Magento Enterprise? Many of the same differences are there for Shopify Plus (the equivalent of Magento Enterprise Edition for larger stores). Shopify plus stores manage a higher conversion rate (2.6% vs 1.6% for Magento EE), and but still have a lower average value per session ($2.12 on Shopify Plus vs $3.23 on Magento). And Plus stores, with more customised themes, still get a higher bounce rate from mobile search (55% vs 51% for Magento). If you're looking for more info, we have a useful post on the general differences between Shopify and Magento, and our friends at Electric Eye have an extensive breakdown of how Shopify and Magento pricing and implementation really work for merchants seeking the best ecommerce platform for their business. For an in-depth look at enterprise ecommerce options, we recommend checking out the big Magento 2 Commerce vs Shopify Plus comparison by Paul Rogers. An expert in ecommerce replatforming, Rogers has worked with Magento brands including O’Neills, Agent Provocateur, Waterford, Royal Doulton, and Shopify Plus brands including Bulletproof, Trotters, Oco, Current Body and ESC. Learn more Looking for more performance data? If you're interested in the topic of Magento vs Shopify performance, you can view our public listing of detailed Shopify benchmarks and Magento benchmarks. We've made it easy for anyone to dive into the data for themselves. And if you have an ecommerce website, sign up to benchmark your site for free! [subscribe button_text="benchmark your site"]

2019-03-21

Littledata Shopify App featured on Ecommerce Fastlane Podcast

Littledata's own Edward Upton is featured on a new episode of the Ecommerce Fastlane Shopify podcast! Check it out here:Episode 33: Get The Complete Picture Of Your Shopify Store's Performance With Deeper Marketing Insights .The eCommerce Fastlane podcast is the best in the business. It caters to ecommerce strategies, success stories, sales, traffic, and growth for Shopify Plus stores. In the new episode Ed discusses the Littledata Shopify reporting app and how you can make smarter business decisions for your Shopify store. As podcast host Steve Hutt puts it "It closes the loop on all of your data including your Shopify store orders, marketing channels, and lifetime customer value." In other words, your Google Analytics will never be the same. Littledata is a Shopify App Partner that has created an analytics platform that takes Google Analytics and literally puts it on steroids. It closes the loop on all of your data including your Shopify store orders, marketing channels, and lifetime customer value. Littledata offers a free connection with Google Analytics to make sure people get accurate reporting, more powerful marketing insights, and a more complete picture of ecommerce performance. Shopify's basic integration with Google Analytics doesn't capture all of the ecommerce journey events and attribution that stores want to have. That's where Littledata comes in, to make sure that you can get a better grasp of the customer journey. [subscribe] Our Shopify Plus connection automatically tracks the sales and marketing data you need to scale a Shopify Plus store. Here's a comparison chart between our tracking and the default tracking in Shopify. On top of fixing your data collection we've launched the first Shopify flow connector for Google Analytics. The connector enables Shopify Plus stores to automate tracking with custom events in Google Analytics. If you're a subscription business, we integrate with ReCharge to give you an accurate data stream. This means no more headaches when it comes to recurring orders and first-time orders. Say goodbye to the days when transactions from Shopify don't match Google Analytics, and say hello to accuracy! Littledata is the smart solution and we offer a free Google Analytics connection, plus a 14-day free trial on all of our plans - it's the smart way to connect Shopify Plus with Google Analytics. Don't forget to leave a review after subscribing to the podcast on iTunes, Stitcher, Google Play or wherever else you like to listen!

by Ari
2019-02-19

How to provide multilingual customer service for ecommerce

Ecommerce is on the rise around the world. Both individuals and companies can create online sites and sell their products without retail storefronts. Studies have shown that eight in ten European internet users perform online purchases through some form of ecommerce storefront. This trend shows no signs of stopping, especially in the younger demographic and millennials. However, online business carries its own share of problems and conundrums to resolve. Even if you implement ecommerce software through a platform like BigCommerce or Magento, you will still have a lot to plan for. International customers are likely to contact you with wishes to buy your products. Even if you implement a multi-currency ecommerce solution like Shopify, the problem is that many people still won’t speak your native language, whatever it may be. Multilingual customer service and user experience (UX) can amend that shortcoming. Let’s take a look at what you can provide for your customers when it comes to multilingual customer support and enhanced UX overall. Benefits of multilingual UX Before we dive into multilingual customer service for ecommerce, let’s take a look at the benefits regarding the process. After all, every upgrade or addition to your site should bear some form of positive outcome. According to CSA Research, 75% of worldwide customers prefer buying online goods through sites with their languages featured as an option. This number is too high to ignore, so let’s take a look at several benefits of implementing multilingual support on your ecommerce website. Better customer engagement Just over 26% of internet transactions on the global level take place in English language. This fact is even more alarming when you take the global number of internet users into account. Providing a multilingual ecommerce storefront will allow for better user engagement globally. People from different corners of the world will be much more likely to use your site to order goods and spread positive word of mouth about your practices. Higher ROI Return on Investment (ROI) is on every ecommerce website owner’s mind – and for good reasons. Hiring professional translators or outsourcing your localization through Pick Writers and their translation services reviews costs money. However, the return on investment connected to the initial expense is tremendous. Mobile ads which lead to online stores fare 86% better if they offer localized marketing content to their readers. No business model will save you from the simple fact that people like to be met halfway when languages are concerned. Good SEO ranking Search Engine Optimization (SEO) plays a huge role in how your site is perceived through search engines and their algorithms. Google has modified the SEO algorithm to detect and promote websites which offer accessibility and original content above all else. This means that implementing a multilingual approach to your ecommerce will lead to resounding success, especially if you pursue more global languages such as Chinese, Russian and German. Multilingual customer service in ecommerce As with any addition to an ecommerce website, multilingual support should come in stages. Let’s take a detailed look at how you can implement multilingual customer service into an existing, live ecommerce website. 1. Research popular languages and demand Every industry has a certain target demographic which makes it tick. The same goes for children’s toys, books, car equipment or anything else. In order to pinpoint the perfect languages for your website, you should take a look at supply and demand in the industry. Scour through popular competition and their websites. Ask your existing customers about their preferred language offering through email surveys. Do anything you can to eliminate unnecessary languages and add any which might be out of the usual plethora of French, Italian, German and Spanish. 2. Work with an international shipping company Since you plan on expanding into international waters, you should look for shipping companies which can meet your clientele’s demands. International shipping companies come in two varieties; some focus on sea transportation while others (more commonly) prefer air shipping. Look for the best international shipping options in your country and see if you can settle for a mutually-beneficial contract. After all, there is no point in shipping internationally if you don’t break even at the end. 3. Site translation and localization As we’ve mentioned before, site localization should be done in-house or outsourced to a professional translation service. Outsourcing is especially viable if you intend to offer multilingual support in numerous languages not only in content but customer support as well. Add new languages in waves and don’t overreach. You have all the time in the world to slowly and methodically add languages one by one and gauge the public interest in doing so. [subscribe] 4. Machine-learning chatbots In the early days of your website’s multilingual customer service, you can rely on chatbots to get things done. Chatbots are AI algorithms designed to provide rudimentary customer support and learn as they go along. Some of the better quality chatbot algorithms can be found in the app stores for platforms like Shopify, BigCommerce and Magento. These prolific ecommerce support websites also offer numerous plugins which can make the transition into multilingual services much easier and user-friendly. 5. Hire or outsource support agents There will always come a moment where your chatbots won’t be able to deliver on their promises. This is especially possible in their early days, while they are still unaware of the customers’ patterns on your website. In order to offer full customer service despite this shortcoming, you can hire full-time agents or virtual assistants to act as support agents. With some rudimentary training, these employees and freelancers can help you deliver multilingual customer service without you personally speaking the languages. 6. Ongoing product description support Multilingual customer service is a long-term commitment. Each product you publish on your ecommerce website will have to be updated with corresponding descriptions and texts in each language. This raises the question of whether you should hire full-time translators or stick to on-demand freelancers. Make the choice that works best for the volume of products you intend to publish. 7. Create and emphasize feedback channels Ecommerce or not, you will want to talk to your customers on a constant basis. Create dedicated a dedicated email address for feedback and comments. Collect data from your chatbots and have human support agents go through them. Gather feedback constantly, and make sure that your customers know that every bit of criticism is welcome. That way, you will always have an insight into how well you are doing your job. You will also know whether or not you should refocus your multilingual customer service efforts one way or another. Conclusion Whether you opt for DIY localization or assisted ecommerce development with a platform such as Shopify, you should always do it on demand. Never assume that a language is necessary on your website by hunch alone. Add new language support options on a constant basis but back those actions up with research and feedback as you go. Only then will you strike the perfect cord with your audience and find a middle ground that works for both parties. This is a guest post by Kristin Savage, a freelance writer with a special interest in how the latest achievements in media and technology can help to grow readership and revenue. You can find her on Facebook and Medium.

2019-02-14

Littledata's Shopify connection is now using gtag and GTM data layer

Littledata’s Shopify app is updating to use Google’s latest tracking code library. This will simplify your setup for Google Ads and speed up your site. Google’s ‘global site tag’ or gtag has been live for a year now and is stable for Littledata to adopt. In version 5 of our tracking script we now use gtag for all the events sent to Google Analytics. The advantages of gtag are: Integrates with Google Ads out of the box – no need for separate Google Ads conversion tracker Smaller Javascript library = faster page load times Future proof for using Google Optimize In addition, we are now using the standard 'data layer' format used by Google Tag Manager. This will make it easier for all you hackers to extend Littledata's tracking and use GTM with the enhanced ecommerce data layer, and easily create tags for marketing platforms like: Facebook, Criteo, etc. [subscribe] We've also moved to using the default ecommerce event naming recommended by Google. For example, the event category 'Ecommerce' is now 'ecommerce' (lower case) and event action 'Add to cart' is now 'add_to_cart' (snake case). If you have goals or reports based on the old event names you may need to update them. One final change is that we're only sending page views to GA when the page is not hidden in the browser. Certain advertising campaigns, including SnapChat ads, preload your webpages to provide a faster experience for users, but this skews your analytics with lots of low-grade visits who didn't actually 'see' your landing page. How to update the script If your store already has our tracking script installed, just click on the in-app notification to update. Not a Littledata user yet? If you're struggling with implementing Google Ads conversion tracking or GTM for a Shopify store, check out our Google Analytics connections for Shopify and Shopify Plus stores. Let our app fix your tracking, so you can get back to business!

2019-02-12

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