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Google Gives Merchants New Tools to Measure Shopping Behavior

New features coming to Google Analytics users should give ecommerce pros more insights into what make their customers tick in terms of buying, and not buying, something from a website. Google disclosed the forthcoming beta test of these features during the kickoff to its “Google Analytics Summit 2014 – Data in Action” event.

As noted at the Google Analytics blog, the company claimed their Enhanced Ecommerce update will change how the current product measures the ecommerce experience. The product’s present-day focus looks more at purchase details, valuable information but perhaps not as deep as online sellers may like.

Enhanced Ecommerce should provide more insight regarding actions beyond the landing page and the purchase. Google said there will be new metrics for aspects like adding to a cart, internal campaign clicks, and the effectiveness of internal merchandising tools among others.

New features in Enhanced Ecommerce promise reports for tracking what affiliates drive to a site as part of the Affiliate Code report, with revenue, transactions, and average order value associated with sales coming from those partner sites.

Sellers who provide order-level or product-level promotional coupons will have a better look into the impact of those marketing approaches. An Order Coupon report will work in a similar fashion to the Affiliate Code report, and the Product Coupon report details revenue, unique purchases, and product revenue per purchase, according to Google’s Support Center.

Gaining access to the broader shopping experience of one’s site users will require some back-end work. By tagging pages with the analytics.js snippet to enable Universal Analytics for a site, followed by adding the Google Analytics’ ec.js plugin to pages, site owners will be able to track details like visitors adding or removing items from shopping carts, starting a checkout, and completing a transaction on the property.

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David A Utter
David A Utter
David A. Utter is a freelance writer based in Lexington, KY. He has covered technology topics from search to security to online business and has been quoted in places like ZDNet and BusinessWeek. He considers his appearance on NPR's "All Things Considered" with long-time host Robert Siegel a delightful highlight. You can find him on Twitter @davidautter and on LinkedIn.