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Ecommerce Analytics: Funnel Analytics Part 3

Funnel analytics is one of the basic concepts that is important for tracking your ecommerce websites performance.  Funnel analytics is a series of events that lead toward a certain goal or conversion for an eCommerce business.

funnel analytics

Consider the analogy of your ecommerce website as a full subway train and each stop on the subway line is one step closer to completing a conversion. At the beginning of the ride, the subway car is full and there are many users, but at each stop more riders get off the subway. By the end of the subway line, there are only a few users who get to the end and complete a conversion.  This is the game of web conversions and analytics, and the route each user takes is consistently the same to a conversion.

The first thing to do is to setup your funnel analytics. We recommend using Google Analytics. While tracking your efforts, you will see the most popular sources are these areas: Search, Referral, Campaign, Social and Direct. Once you register your eCommerce website you will become more familiar with the different traffic acquisition types that are available on the platform. The platform has a dashboard type data display that allows even the casual user to understand where their traffic is coming from.

The important aspect of this analytics tool is that it can bring to light important data that can point out information where the website might be having conversion problems.

There are three common goal-tracking errors that happens when you are trying to setup your analytics. Making sure these three problems aren’t occurring can assure that your analytics are correct: technical errors, committed pages, and payment gateways.

In terms of technical errors, there may be an extra erroneous link on the way to the final step of the funnel and all your customers start dropping out and don’t reach the final step. By eliminating the back-door you can get rid of the page that’s the problem and only let legitimate customers through to the final page.  Furthermore, you could also have the opposite problem where you might have omitted a page in the funnel and not accounted for a step which you will notice that a bunch of customers don’t ever reach the final step in the funnel.

The last major program your funnel analytics could be suffering from is from your payment gateways. If you are using a third-party payment system your customers may be leaving your website and then returning to your website for the thankyou page. This could be a problem for your analytics having your customer leave and return to your website.

To analyze your funnel, you have to be able to see what your current conversion rates are and what are your current drop-off rates.  Checking these rates will help you point out what problems you are having on your website.  Furthermore, it can help you point out where your drop-off rates are and how to fix bottlenecks objectively.  Looking at things like: Do you require your customers to register to continue to payment, is there an obvious way to continue for the customer to complete a transaction, and is there something wrong with your design of your website that makes customers not finish?

To conclude looking at the funnel analytics is one of the most important things you can do when configuring your ecommerce store. Making sure to have a critical understanding of your drop off and conversation rate is important to making any design or structural changes to your ecommerce site.

Being smart about analytics and understanding the numbers can make or break your ecommerce website.

Wiebke Reile

Wiebke Reile

Wiebke Reile has been social media strategist for the last eight years in the Internet Industry. She has also professionally worked in the film and television industry as a documentary film editor in New York City. Currently, she is a researcher for the University of Hawaii and pursuing her doctorate degree; focusing her research towards online political social movements.

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