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Use funnels in GA

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1. Determine whether to use strict or flexible funnels.

Use strict funnels when you want to highlight likely drop-off points in an idealized journey or when you expect users to follow a more specific sequence of steps to completion.

Use flexible funnels when you’re not concerned about the specific pages users visits or the specific order they visit them in.

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2. Set up a Goal and configure funnel steps to activate Conversion metrics and Goals reports.

  1. Login to Google Analytics and navigate to Admin.
  2. If you have multiple views under your GA property, select the view where you want this goal to be set up.
  3. On the View settings list, click on Goals > +New Goal > Choose a Goal for example, place an order.
  4. Select the Destination Goal > Goal Details.
  5. Turn on the Funnel switch.
  6. Name each step of the funnel and add their corresponding URLs. You can also specify whether a step in the funnel is optional, flexible, or required, strict.

Once you enter the necessary information, you’ll see the results under Conversions in Google Analytics. You can also access reports like Goal Flow under the Goals section to learn about user behavior.

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3. Use Reverse Goal Path funnels to reverse engineer conversion problems and opportunities.

Once you have at least one Goal set up, go to Conversions > Goals > Reverse Goal Path. You’ll then see a count of Goal Completions and the pages that users visited leading up to that goal, up to three steps. Export this data as a CSV and use a pivot table to find common paths or dissect the data in other ways.

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4. Use the Ecommerce Shopping Behavior Report to find out the number of user sessions for each step in the funnel, and get a visual display of the percentage of visitors who arrived at the current step from the previous one.

This funnel is only for ecommerce sites and requires you to turn on Enhanced Ecommerce.

Go to Conversions > Ecommerce > Shopping Behavior to see data from the ecommerce funnel and analyze how your visitors moved through the different steps.

You can also drill down to specific pages or metrics. For example, you can see how many sessions turned into transactions by clicking All Sessions > Product Views > Add to Cart> Check-Out > Transactions.

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5. Use the Checkout Behavior funnel visualization to see where users drop off within a checkout process.

This feature also requires you to turn on Enhanced Ecommerce.

Go to Conversions > Ecommerce > Checkout Behavior to see granular, sophisticated data for checkout form fields.

For example, a user may start the checkout process and enter their email, but abandon the page on the payment info fields. This might mean that you need to explore more convenient alternatives, like adding a PayPal button or a one-click purchase button.

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6. Use Horizontal funnels via custom reports to view conversion paths for different types of visitors.

Set up each funnel step as a Goal, like a product page visit, turn on the Funnel option, and add the destination URL of the previous goal as a single funnel step. Select Custom Reports under the Customization section in Google Analytics and click +New Custom Report.

Add each Goal Completion to the Metric Groups section in chronological order, with the Abandonment Rate metric between each Goal Completion. For example:

  • Goal 1 Completions.
  • Goal 2 Abandonment Rate.
  • Goal 2 Completions.
  • Goal 3 Abandonment Rate.
  • Goal 3 Completions.

Sort your data by custom dimensions like Landing page, City, or Browser if necessary, by adding dimensions to the Dimension Drilldowns section when building your Custom Report. Once you’ve created the report, you can then add multiple segments to the same report to see how different visitors interact with parts of your funnel and identify key opportunities to improve the user journey.

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7. Use custom funnel reports to create funnels for any trackable user action or behavior, like pageviews and events.

Go to Customization > Custom Reports > +New Custom Report and select the Funnel option in the Type section.

Define funnel stages in the Funnel Rules section based on Google Analytics Dimensions, including custom and ecommerce dimensions. You can define funnel stages by Event Label, Action, and Category.

The report also lets you decide if users:

  • Can enter at any stage.
  • Must enter at a certain stage.
  • Complete the funnel in one session.
  • Complete the funnel in multiple sessions.
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8. Add custom segments like geography, gender, browser, and landing page to any funnel to get more granular data from your funnels.

There are endless ways to divide the data. For instance, you can view funnel data filtered by mobile traffic only or compare mobile data side-by-side with desktop data like in the image below:

segmented funnels
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Current Playbook:

Use funnels in GA

Feb 11, 2021

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