Day 1 #AnalyticsWeek Presentation – Web Analytics Basics

Category: Analytics


Thank you for attending our first presentation to kick off #AnalyticsWeek! In this presentation, Don Rodriguez, Director of Analytics at NetElixir, broke down the basics of using Google Analytics as your web analytics platform to get insightful data about your business online. You can check out the slides from this presentation now to understand the basics of tracking your traffic and troubleshooting some common tracking issues, as well as learn how to customize your Google Analytics to report on PayPal referrals and how to set up PayPal referral exclusions to get accurate revenue data.

Don’t forget to join us for Day 2 of our #AnalyticsWeek webinar series as Marlena Laszkowska, Product Specialist at Google, presents the latest and greatest benefits of using Universal Analytics as your web analytics platform!

Day 1 Q&A

1. Can you build a custom segment to view users who bought a specific product?

A: Yes, you can! There are two ways to do this:

i) In the Advanced Segment tool, you can click on ‘Ecommerce’ and set a filter based on the Product name or Product Category (if you pass that info to GA).


ii) In the Custom section of the ‘New Segment’ setup, you can set a condition based on a number of product related attributes (assuming you pass them to GA) such as the SKU # or brand.



2. How often do you recommend that goals be redefined and evaluated?

A: Assuming that you have goals set up and that they are working correctly, the trigger events that would cause you to redefine or reevaluate them are:

  1. Any significant web site design or architecture changes. Your destination URL goals may be affected by URL changes. Your funnel definitions may be affected by changes to your user experience. You may have added content or functionality for which you would like to track engagement such as a blog, a content download section, a new or additional contact form, embedded videos, personalized content such as “You May Also Like” feeds, etc.
  2. Changes to your marketing strategy or tactics. Do those changes affect your existing goals?  Are there new goals you should add based on these changes?
  3. The only goal you have set up is your ecommerce transaction completion goal.  Goals are ways to track mini-conversion or mini-close events like creating an account, signing up for your email marketing list, submitting a contact form, clicking on any kind of link that does not alter your URL, such as playing a video, downloading a file, etc.


3. What GA certifications would you consider useful for a PPC specialist, both in terms of further learning the platform as well as furthering his/her career in this field?

A: We would definitely recommend becoming Google Analytics certified by getting the Google Analytics Individual Qualification (GAIQ).  See  Even for advanced users, we recommend taking the exam as preparing for it will undoubtedly educate you on something you didn’t know about GA.  Here is the prep course for the GAIQ from Google:


4. If you’re using AdWords auto-tagging to track in Google Analytics, can you get the info from the gclid/Value track to match historical UTM parameters?

A: The context of this question (without getting too geeky) is that the UTM parameters for tracking traffic in GA used to be listed in the cookie for Paid Search visits.  This is no longer the case. This company was grabbing that information from the cookie value and storing it for future use.  One possible solution would be to parse the referrer value in the HTTP header to grab those parameters.  Here is a snippet of a referrer value showing you the UTM parameters:


Here is a snippet of a direct visit to a site that shows where the UTM parameters are included for non-paid search traffic.


Here is example of a cookie value for a paid search visit:


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