J.Boye – Resource from Web Analytics in Higher Education Presentation

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Presentation Powerpoint Deck

Web Analytics in Higher Education presentation (PPT) from J.Boye 2011 Philly. Complete notes are included.

Also, here is the Avinash Kaushik blog post mentioned in the presentation: Web Analytics Segmentation: Do Or Die, There Is No Try!

Custom Reports From Presentation

Traffic and Outcomes by Source

This custom report was inspired by a custom report I saw in one of Avinash Kaushik’s blog posts. I tweak it depending on the website that uses it. This report helps you see all of your important traffic metrics and conversion metrics all in one report. If you have GA version 5, use this report instead of the “events by campaign” report to reveal how your sources drive application clicks (previously not able to be a goal) or inquiry form submissions. Keep in mind that the “old” version only shows the inquiry form submission goal. Also, these reports use our goal numbers. You might have to swap in the ones you want to use.

Events by Campaign

Use this custom report especially if you don’t have Google Analytics version 5 yet. This custom report helps you see which campaigns led to events easier than the standard reporting. To track events, you can either manually create them or use the gaAddons.js script as explained in-depth in the tracking off-site conversions post.

Bonus Report – Campaign Traffic and Conversions by Geography

In the presentation I mentioned paying attention to your school or unit strategic plan to come up with those business objectives and to then use that information to further segment your key performance indicators.

If you focus on specific geographic areas quite a bit, use this custom report to get right to the point. This shows campaign traffic and key conversion data and you can drill down, by campaign, to a specific geographic region. So, let’s say you are targeting a specific state or an area of the state for campaigns. Use this report to see, by campaign, which regions/cities/(or go ahead and add country if that’s a target) are driving traffic and conversions within those campaigns.

Automatically Tracking Events

gaAddons is a fantastic script written by Stephane Hamel that allows you to track outbound, mailto, and download links as events automatically. Saves a ton of time and if you have a content management system with multiple content editors, it will save in people unknowingly deleting your onClick’s.

Resources for Tracking Goals as Events (New Version GA)

What I’m most excited about with the new version of Google Analytics is the ability to track events as goals. There are a couple limitations right now. For example, when beta first launched you could use regular expressions to combine any type of events into one goal. For some reason it looks like they took that option away and left only the typical. Check out these resources that explain exactly how to set up events as goals.

Other Ways to Track Off-Site Conversions

There are other ways to track off-site conversions (not just tracking events). If you are able to use your tracking code on the “thank you” page of the application, whether it is on another sub-domain at your university or off your domain completely, you should do that first. Tracking the “thank you” page or the onSubmit is definitely a more realistic number than the off-site clicks. Sometimes, however, it just can’t be done so off-site clicks are all we can measure.

Here are some resources if you’re able to put your tracking code on the “thank you” page of either another site within your university sub-domain or another domain altogether:

Important Books and Further Reading

Web Analytics 2.0: The Art of Online Accountability and Science of Customer Centricity

By Avanish Kaushik

Avanish’s book is incredible because it speaks to both the everyday analyst as well as the super-geek hardcare analyst. If you’re serious (or even just semi-serious) about web analytics and you haven’t read this book. Order his book now.

Advanced Web Metrics with Google Analytics, second edition

By Brian Clifton

Brian’s book is also fantastic. If you use Google Analytics to track user behavior on your site, this book is a must. Learn advanced techniques as well as implementation fundamentals. Brian also has a great blog called Measuring Success that is a companion to the book. Order his book now.

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