Should you be using GA4 conversion tracking?

  • Article by

    Amie Whale

GA4 conversion tracking - eighty3 creative

One of the most innovative ways to better understand your customers in 2022 is via Google Analytics 4 (GA4) conversion tracking. Find out what’s new in GA4 and how it can help increase your website’s conversion rate.

Google Analytics 4 is a state-of-the-art web analytics platform launched in early 2022. It’s a more efficient, streamlined version of previous iterations from the tech giant, the first of which was created back in 2005.

For a full rundown on GA4, including the newest features and changes to be aware of, check out our introductory guide on the subject.

In this blog, we’ll explore conversion tracking in GA4, one of the platform’s most important features. What is Google Analytics conversion tracking, how does it work, how can you set it up, and how will it benefit your business from a marketing perspective?

What is conversion tracking in Google Analytics 4?

The Google Analytics 4 (GA4) conversion tracking feature allows you to monitor conversions on your website or mobile app.

A conversion occurs when a customer completes a desired course of action, like clicking through to a particular link, signing up for an email newsletter or making a product purchase. In older versions of Google Analytics, the same feature was called ‘Goals’.

When you use GA4 conversion tracking wisely, you can collect extensive data concerning what users are doing on your website or app. You can see what they’re engaging with, what they aren’t connecting to and so on.

From a user experience perspective, 76% of marketers surveyed by Databox prefer the new GA4 tracking set-up to any previous incarnation.

How does Google Analytics track conversions?

Previously, when Google Analytics was ‘Universal Analytics’, conversions were monitored per session rather than for each event. This made the customer journey more challenging to follow, and as a result, it was harder to track exactly what was working and what wasn’t.

The main reason to pay attention to conversion tracking is for the betterment of your business and the improvement of your marketing tactics, so a change was definitely necessary.

Now, GA4 marks every conversion as an ‘event’, allowing you to separate things like email signups from full conversions. Visitor behaviour is precisely spelt out and far easier to interpret for purposes of improvement and enhancement.

How to track conversions in Google Analytics 4?

There are different types of conversion tracking in GA4. Whichever type you choose, you’ll be offered a comprehensive breakdown of the data, ideal for harvesting and analysis. The options are as follows:

1. Automatic conversion tracking

This is your most straightforward option.

All you need to do is ensure that GA4 codes are installed on your website or mobile app and add any necessary tracking events. Once you’ve done this, these events will be automatically marked as conversions when they take place.

2. Marking events as conversions

Anything classed as an ‘event’ can also be counted as a conversion.

 For instance, if you want to measure your page views, you can head to the ‘All Events’ column in your account and turn on the ‘page views’ toggle.

Just be sure you’re accounting for the impact this will have on the data, as page views will then be counted as full conversions

3. Custom conversion creation

Try custom conversions if you’re aiming to measure something, but neither of the above options is getting the job done right in your particular situation.

You can create a custom conversion by splitting one event off from another to make two, essentially. Taking the ‘page views’ event as an example, you could set up a custom conversion that tracked page views and their conversions.

Custom conversion tracking is useful in understanding the whole customer journey, from start to finish. It helps get to the bottom of how a full conversion actually occurred.

How to set up Google Analytics conversion tracking?

If your brain has been fried by overly complex tracking systems of the past, fear no more. Setting up Google Analytics 4 conversion tracking is surprisingly easy and designed to be a pain-free process.

Plus, you can track new and retrospective events, so you don’t need to worry about losing your old data when you switch to GA4. To set up tracking for new events:

1. Click on the ‘Configure’ tab.
2. Click on the conversion.
3. Click ‘New Conversion Event’ and then create a descriptive name for your event in response to the overlay prompt, like ‘Newsletter signups’.
4. You’ll now be able to see your new event in the ‘Conversions’ tab in the ‘Reporting’ menu.

To set up tracking for retrospective events:

1. Click on the ‘Configure’ tab.
2. Click on ‘Events’.
3. Mark any particular event as a conversion by toggling the switch in front of the event to ‘On’.
4. Click on the ‘Conversions’ tab to see the figures for newly toggled events.

To ensure a new event is tracked, it must be passed on to your Google Analytics 4 property. You can do that in two ways – with the Google Tag Manager function or the ‘Create Event’ function.

Talk it through with a leading West Midlands creative agency

Hopefully, you understand the marketing power conversion tracking in GA4 can wield and why it’s so important. It’s truly the best way to engage customers and keep them coming back, determining what works well and what needs adjusting.

At eighty3creative, we’re dab-hands at all things analytics and GA4. We can help you develop your digital marketing strategy and get the most out of the updated platform’s beneficial features.

Get in touch today to find out more about our free audit.

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