How to Set Up eCommerce Tracking in Google Analytics

Analytics are essential to point out and analyze your eCommerce’s crucial aspects, such as most engaging pages and product positions, traffic sources, and conversion routes. Especially for this, Google Analytics provides excellent reporting opportunities that help you thoroughly analyze the demand for specific products. In particular, you can visualize revenue per transaction, products per transaction, and other important metrics that should boost the efficiency of your business decision-making.

To make your life easier, we offer the following brief guidelines on employing Google Analytics for clarifying your main eCommerce conversion goals to track, ultimately boosting your eCommerce PPC efficiency, and more. 

The Importance of eCommerce Tracking

Data is the most valuable asset accumulated in especially extensive and useful volumes precisely through eCommerce capabilities (a massive advantage over brick-and-mortar stores). Thus, you get to point out the most densely populated sections of your website, track people’s routes leading to your store, and get a big picture of customers’ behavior in different commercial and technical conditions.  

This invaluable knowledge can help maximize the level of user experience focused on your target customer segments. And the Google Analytics toolset will serve as the most efficient means to track precious sales data and monitor crucial eCommerce metrics.

For example, the sole knowledge of how much time potential or real customers spend on your website on average before and after making a purchase can spawn reasons for site optimization or redesign. And the most incredible thing is that Google Analytics is absolutely free to use – you can install it right away by integrating a measly line of code with your website pages.

Setting Up eCommerce Tracking Through Google Analytics

It’s pretty simple and hassle-free to integrate Google Analytics with your existing website. All you need is a Google account (better use a corporate one) and some manual effort – you must insert the tracking Google Analytics code line into every separate website page’s code. To make the whole process simpler for you, just follow the algorithm below.

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#1. Register a Google Analytics account

Presuming you already have a fitting registered Google account, you will need to set up a Google Analytics account as well. During the registration, specify your eCommerce resource’s URL in the proper line. Once you’re done with that, you’ll get a unique Tracking ID – just click on the button to obtain it. 

#2. Integrate the tracking code with pages

You will now have to copy/paste your Tracking ID across all pages of your eCommerce website for thorough tracking. If you want to see how your future dashboard will be looking in practice, you can always check out the demo account of Google Analytics. In particular, you need to add the tracking code to the <head> sections of your page HTML structures. If you are using a CSM (like WordPress, for instance), there are features for automated code addition.

#3. Launch tracking

Right after your individual tracking code has been neatly added to every other page of the website, you can adjust the tracking settings. For this, open your Google Analytics account and go to Admin -> View Settings -> Ecommerce Settings and enable Ecommerce Settings and Enhanced Ecommerce Reporting options there.

#4. Set off tracking in-depth data

The Enhanced Ecommerce Data opportunities provided by eCommerce tracking via Google Analytics allow you to get complex insights concerning your online store visitor behavior and purchase patterns. The in-depth analytics can be reached with the help of gtag.js scripts, which need to be configured to direct several types of trackable data to the Google Analytics “tracking HQ”.

The generated amounts of all this information can be overwhelming at times, but you shouldn’t fret, as even in problematic cases, you can always use a specialized Google troubleshooter

#5. Settling analytics objectives

With the whole technical part adjusted and in place, you should outline the ultimate goals of your analytics efforts – what exactly you are looking to track and for what. All in all, the most common types of goals include improving or optimizing:

  • User engagement rates
  • Total revenue
  • Conversions by segments
  • Bounce rate
  • Customer loyalty
  • Return on Investment (ROI)
  • Organic traffic
  • Time spent on site
  • Abandoned cart frequency
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To specify your particular eCommerce tracking goals in Google Analytics, you should open the Admin panel, click Goals in the right column, and put down the description and detail of each goal. This is where the fun starts, and the essential process of tracking valuable insights begins.

eCommerce Reporting in Google Analytics

You can get several reports dedicated to particular website metrics. You can check these reports by going to Reports -> Conversions -> eCommerce. The things you will see there go like this:

  • Ecommerce Overview – a general dashboard showing high-level data stats (including conversion rates, top sellers, revenue numbers, transaction rates, and average check). Here, you can also access a range of reports on:
      • Revenue summary
      • Transaction rates
      • Product performance
      • Revenue by date
      • Sales statistics
      • Average time spent
  • Shopping Behavior – these reports help track behavior patterns of buyers at different stages of the sales funnel, indicating average order value, conversion rates, and transaction rates, among other important figures.
  • Checkout Behavior – this type of report helps you gain insight into the behavior patterns of buyers at the checkout stage, where they usually spend a significant share of time.
  • Product Performance – this report is dedicated to pointing out the highest and lowest-demanded products in your online store. At that, you get to track average prices, revenue figures, purchase rates, average QTY by category or SKU, and more.
  • Sales Performance – you can conveniently filter Sales Performance reports by data and transaction to see the big picture of your overall sales.
  • Product List Performance – product listings get their special metric reports that concern tagged product groups and category sections, catalog pages, cross-selling and upsell sections, recommended and related products, etc.

Top 3 Google Analytics eCommerce Tracking Best Practices

To help you get started on your in-depth eCommerce tracking journey, here are some pro tips that should help kick things off most efficiently.

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Google Analytics and regular sales data inconsistencies

Although it is a very powerful tracking and sales optimization tool, Google Analytics misses covering such important eCommerce data assets as refund rates, unfulfilled orders frequency, canceled orders numbers, and promo codes results.

That’s why you should also not forget to simply keep track of all closed shopping carts in your store. You can later compare the cart abandonment rates, the number of orders and other metrics with Google Analytics reports to verify the transparency and preciseness of certain information.

Avoid duplicate transactions

It so happens that generated eCommerce tracking codes can be processed before a new order has even been placed. This spawns duplicate transactions, which are a real bummer to the smoothness and variability of your tracked eCommerce data. To avoid such instances for sure, you either need a savvy specialist by your side or the knowledge of a savvy specialist that you can find in a free course Google offers. 

Run reverse tests

Running test orders to get optimization insights, don’t underestimate the importance of reverse testing. Thus, you will be able to outline and optimize your buyers’ back, and forth movement through the sales funnel and underlying sections of your eCommerce site. 

Bottom Line

You may as well set up Google Analytics eCommerce tracking single-handedly if you put some time and effort into it and dedicated enough time to all the free knowledge Google provides. For one thing, there are always such nutshell guides as this one online that should help you wrap your head around some underlying things step-by-step. You will also need help getting online payments set up. We hope this one comes in handy.

And if you need some fast, optimized solutions handled by experienced specialists for an important project, it’s best to turn to seasoned field providers. Ultimately, we can help you find a way to most beneficially track the essential metrics for your particular business niche.