I have always been a fan of tracking eCommerce transactions via Analytics as the details provided in the tracking can help identify success factors and (possible) failure points of an eCommerce site. That being said, I have been underwhelmed at the quality of eCommerce data Google Analytics produces. That changed recently with the introduction of Enhanced eCommerce tracking in Google Analytics back in May.

It’s been a couple of months since this enhanced functionality was introduced. Shame on me for not having tried it out sooner. But Summer is… well Summer! I recently implemented things on our eCommerce testbed and fiddled around with things to see what is what. In other words, I tried to ‘break’ it. I couldn’t.

Traditionally Google Analytics eCommerce data focused on details about the purchase:

+ transaction details
+ product details
+ etc..

Meh… That’s old school – IMHO

Marketers today want to understand the entire customer journey. They want more details about customer behaviour when looking at products, interacting with merchandising units and on-site marketing.

Google understands this and has completely revamped how GA measures the eCommerce experience. YAY!

Businesses can now gain clear insight into new important metrics about shopper behaviour and conversions.

Here’s a quick list of what is new:

+ product detail views
+ add to cart actions
+ internal campaign clicks
+ the success of internal merchandising tools,
+ the checkout process
+ purchases

In my Analytics world, shopping cart abandonment is one of the biggest concerns for online merchants. They will now be able to understand how far along shoppers get in the buying process and where they are dropping off. Sweet!

Image Courtesy of Google

Image Courtesy of Google

New Reports

Shopping Analysis Reports

You get a detailed look at how users engage with your content in terms of viewing products, and adding or removing them from shopping carts; along with initiating, abandoning, and completing transactions.

Overview and Product Performance Reports

You get data for the revenue and conversion rates your products generate, how many products the average transaction includes, the average order value, refunds you had to issue, and the rates at which users add products to their carts and make purchases after having viewed product-detail pages.

A basic implementation of Enhanced eCommerce tagging gives you data for individual products, but you can easily add the category and brand properties so you can evaluate data from those perspectives, as well. These properties take string values, so you can create any category and brand taxonomy that’s relevant to your business.

In addition to measuring product performance, you also need to measure the internal and external marketing efforts that support those products.

Affiliate Code Report

You will be able to track revenue, transactions, and average order value as they are associated with affiliate sites that drive customers to your site.

* You can track those same metrics for order-level coupons in the Order Coupon report.

Product Coupon Report

It lets you see how effective product-level coupons are in terms of revenue, unique purchases, and product revenue per purchase.

Internal Promotion Report

If you’re using internal promotions, for example internal banners that promote sales on another part of your site, you can track views, clicks, and the click-through rate for those promotions.

Product Lists

You can also measure how effectively your product lists move merchandise. Product lists represent a logical grouping of products on your site, based on your tagging. You can use them to represent catalog and search-results pages, related-products merchandising blocks, as well as cross-sell and up-sell blocks. The Product List Performance report lets you see which product lists appeared to users, which products appeared in those lists, and the clicks, views, and click-through rate for each list, list position, and product.

A couple of things you need to consider:

1. Make sure you are running Universal Analytics (None of this works without it)
2. Implement Google Tag Manager (Optional but a smart idea)

This is by far the best improvement to Google Analytics I have seen in a long time. If you run an eCommerce site and are really serious about its success, you absolutely need to implement this new feature. And we would be glad to help!

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