Last week Google released a rather significant improvement
to how it helps Internet merchants and web publishers track conversions.
Until now, most responsible for tracking conversion (at
least in Google Analytics) were forced to give credit to the most recent click
(or click on an advertisement). This is commonly referred to as last click
attribution. What marketer’s value in this model is that it provides insights
into the last channel responsible for driving users to an actual sale.
The problem with last click attribution however is that
consumers/customers spend a lot of time on the Web before actually making a purchase
or completing a conversion (however that might be defined). They ask their
friends on social networks, they read reviews on affiliate marketing sites, they
are “branded” through display advertising, etc - it's enough to make even the
most seasoned Web analysts throw up their arms as the challenges to find out
what’s working are immense. Until now.
Google has introduced "multi-channel
funnels" - a set of five new reports in Google analytics that shows
marketers some important insight into the "full path to conversion over a
30 day period." That's pretty exciting if you spend any time within your
analytics account. Finally, users will be able to determine the role that prior
website referrals, searches and advertisements had on conversion and how much
time passed between a visitors initial interest and the eventual purchase.