A big question, we often take for granted the information we receive, whether that be information from Google Analytics, a CRM or we are simply confident our coding is correct. We place a huge amount of trust in data and if that data is not accurate then its basically pointless. So how accurate is your tracking?
If your answer to above was YES, then read on as there may be some tips to help you, if you answer to the above was “I don’t know”, then you should start to really think about the data you take for granted and if its being tracked correctly.
Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything – Wyatt Earp
Firstly to make sure you initial tracking is accurate you should be confident that the tracking code for you analytics package is on every page of your website. Kev Strong wrote an article about over two years ago but its still valid today. You can use a tool such as screaming frog to check that every page on your website contains the tracking code.
Right you have checked your site has analytics on every page but you should give it an audit to check for anomalies.
You can use a free tool like https://www.analyticscheckup.com to get some basic insight;
Check if your own site or subdomain is referring visits to itself.
Did you know you could easily “skew” someone’s analytics data? All you would have to do is use there analytics code on another website and then visits to pages which contain that code will appear in their reports.
So how do you protect yourself against this?
Firstly check what other hostnames (websites) contain your code (You can use the tool above) or create a custom report based on hostname in Google Analytics.
Its best practice to always have one analytics profile that contains all information and then use separate profile(s) to add filters, such as:
In your filtered profile, you can add a filter to exclude hostnames:
It surprises me how many analytics accounts I look at that don’t contain goals or eCommerce tracking, if you don’t have this information how can you ever begin to look at what marketing methods work or how to improve your conversion rate.
For the basics on setting up Analytics Goals you can read this post by Jules Woodward
Things to look out for:
Whether your site is eCommerce or lead generation you can not accurately test your forms or shopping cart purchases every day. To do this you need to look at browser automation; there are two good tools to try this:
I have used testing whizz (paid) where you can simply set up browser tests on your website.
You can then set up:
Right you should know be confident that your tracking the right information and all your contact forms are working correctly so what is left?
Pingdom is a great tool to monitor your websites up-time, it will email or even text you each time your site goes down, better than you know first than one of your potential customers!
That it let me know if you have any tools or processes that use in the comment.