How Google Analytics Multi-Channel Funnels help to shape our Marketing

As digital marketing strategies evolve and begin to include more and more vehicles i.e. PPC, SEO, Remarketing, Social etc we need to get a full understanding of just how important each vehicle is in the consumer buying cycle. Up until now we have rolled out campaigns, analysed (mostly using Google analytics) and then modified based on our findings. However, Google analytics has always reported on, and gave credit to, the vehicle that generated the conversion (last click), but what about the other vehicles and the roll they played leading up to sale.

That question has finally been answered with the GA Multi-Channel Funnels which will give us an overall view of how the consumer behaves in the journey to a conversion and the roll that each vehicle played within that conversion. It will help us understand how consumers learn about the brand and how they make decisions. Shoppers today use twice as many sources  to arrive at a decision and use each source almost twice as heavily as they did in the past.

The example I am about to use is on a site in the travel market in which, thanks to the Google Shopper Science Zero moment of truth study, we know that users use 10.2 sources on average before the purchase.

Travel Sources Used
Travel Sources Used

Quick Introduction

Attribution is the process of crediting  a conversion to specific marketing vehicles, it may take many interactions with your brand before you close the sale, so each vehicle deserves credit. We are moving away from just basing our stats on ‘last click’ tracking and will begin to understand how each marketing channel works thus valuing them individually in each campaign.

Importance of Each Vehicle

This section shows how your traffic sources work together to create sales and conversions. We get stats like:
  •  % of direct conversions were a result of an interaction between organic and PPC traffic
  • % of all transactions that were a result of direct traffic


Channel Attribution

Analysing the channel attribution will give us insights into which channel actually drives conversions and which channels are playing an important role in assisting conversions:

  • Organic is the more important channel role in driving completion of sales and conversions
  • Paid plays an important assist role in the sales funnel
Top Conversions Paths
Here we can visibly see the journey consumers take and how many sources they use before completing that final conversion.
  • The purchase path is complex and long
  • Many interactions within each channel and across channels
  • We can see the % of all transactions completed within 1st visit
  • We can see which vehicles work together to deliver more transactions
These are just some of the new insights available to us, we can also brake it down by the number of interactions and the number of days it took to convert. Metrics like this will help us shape our marketing strategies to better suit our consumers buying behavior thus increasing those conversion figures. It also gives us leverage when trying to explain to clients why we need budget for certain vehicles, because even though they are not directly bringing in the hard cold cash, they are playing a pivotal role in the consumer buying cycle.

About Kieran Flanagan

Online Marketer who implements both inbound and paid strategies to help companies grow internationally. Lover of content marketing, SEO, analytics, CRO and strategy. A highly motivated marketing geek high on data crack.