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How to track your conversion rate in Google Analytics

You’ve decided on your website strategy and created a call-to-action on every page. As a service-based business owner, the main goal of your site is probably to get clients. But here’s the thing:

95% of visitors won’t buy anything on their first visit.

Instead of trying to get those first-time visitors to buy, get them to subscribe to your email list. You can then build a relationship with them through your emails and turn them into raving fans!

I’m sure you’ve heard you need an email list countless times, to create lead magnets and content upgrades, and put opt-in forms all around your site. You may have created landing pages, put forms in your sidebar, footer, at the end of each blog post, in an announcement/hello bar, and added an exit-intent pop-up. Apart from the many plugins available for these, you can create your own widget areas to add opt-in forms anywhere on your site.

But how do you know which places actually work? Your mailing list software or opt-in plugin may already track conversions for you. But, they usually only track conversion per form. Unless you create a new form for every single page and spot, you only know which forms perform best, but not what page or post they were on, or where subscribers came from.

There are so many different ways you can get more newsletter subscribers from your website. And adding more opt-in forms around your site definitely helps if you had only one form in a hidden corner of your site. But to really grow your list, you need to track your results and fine-tune your site to get a higher conversion rate.

That’s where Google Analytics comes in. You can set up a goal, to track your subscriber conversion rate, and see where they came from and what pages/posts get you the most new subscribers. If you haven’t already, first set up Google Analytics for your site and make sure your opt-in forms redirect new subscribers to a Thank You page.

Setting up goals

  1. Go to the Admin area of Google Analytics. From the ACCOUNT and PROPERTY columns, select the property you’re working with. In the VIEW column, click Goals.

  1. Click the button to create a new goal. Give it a name that makes sense to you and select the type of goal you want. For subscriber conversion, this should be Destination.

New subscribers should be redirected to a Thank You page. That’s the destination goal you want. The Funnel allows you to set up the path you expect people to take to reach the destination page. Since there’ll be different pages where people can subscribe, you can leave it turned off. If you want to create a goal to track how many people submitted your contact form vs those who visited the contact page, you’d add the Contact page in the Funnel options, like below.

Google Analytics: Setting Up Goals

Tracking your goals

Now that your goals are set up, you can see the results under Conversions > Goals > Overview. The first view is the Goal Completion Location, which will always be the destination page for Destination goals, so not that interesting. Source/medium shows you where your new subscribers came from, like Google, Pinterest, Facebook, other social media channels or sites you were featured on. Knowing which source converts best, you can work on getting more visitors from those sources. If, for example, you get most subscribers from Facebook, you can decide to double-down on your Facebook marketing to get more visitors.

Another report you want to look at, is Reverse Goal Path. This shows you which pages and posts get you the most subscribers. If a specific blog post is generating a lot more subscribers than other posts, you should take a look at that blog post to figure out what it is about that post that works so well, and try to improve your other posts. You can also try to get more traffic to that specific blog post, through promoting it more on social media.

If you have a low subscribe rate, you may want to change a lot on your site to get it higher. But it might actually be better to make small changes and track them for a while so you can really see the impact of the different changes you make. Experiment with your opt-in placement, design, lead magnet and content upgrades until you find what works for you.

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