I don’t know if I have every mentioned it here, but if you haven’t discovered the blog Google for Nonprofits, it is pretty handy for getting tips on using any of the many products Google has created.
Last week, they had an entry about using the Goals feature of Google Analytics. I have long been aware of the feature, but never used it because I always figured I can call up the data for a time period and cross reference the data a bunch of different ways as the questions about visitor segmentation occurs to me.
However, there might be times when you want to achieve a certain goal like raising awareness about a specific show in a certain area within a period of time or increasing traffic from social media sources and you want to avoid the trouble of setting the filters up every day. Setting a goal tracks all that for you, tells you how close you are to achieving the goal and tells you when the goal is met.
The example they use is for volunteering:
“Goals are completed activities that happen on your site, like someone filling out and submitting a volunteer sign-up form. We can easily translate the key performance indicators (KPIs) we designed in our measurement framework into Analytics Goals. For example if your KPI is volunteer sign-ups, you could track it by setting a goal of how many people reach the volunteer sign up confirmation page.”
And they also allow you to track segments of your website visitors.
For example, you could use a custom dimension to segment your website visitors into groups like volunteers and donors. When someone submits a donation your custom dimension will indicate the user is a donor. Or when someone volunteers via your website, they’ll be identified as a volunteer. With that segmentation, we can gather specific data on our donors and volunteers which allows us to measure our KPIs
In regard to the segmentation tracking, I suspect its success depends on people not clearing their web browser cookies cache between visits in order to note their return during subsequent visits.
But if you have been wishing you could learn more about your visitors from your website, this blog is a good place to learn some tricks to making it talk.