Setting up goals in Google Analytics

Setting up goals in Google Analytics

How do I set up goals in Google Analytics and why would I want to?

So what is the benefit of taking the time to set this up? Well for most businesses it can allow you to define ROI on different channels of advertising or marketing. If you are selling a specific widget, setting up a goal in Google Analytics can teach your marketing team to effectively convert customers, by easily identifying where the fallout is, and sometimes very specifically why. Google gives you the opportunity to define and track up to 10 urls for any one goal. Imagine the power when testing messages and assessing the value of promotions or offers? For some businesses it might be the annual report or industry white paper, never-the-less, you can learn the effectiveness of that information. If you don’t currently know the value of an online lead, you can begin to understand very quickly, thanks to goal tracking with Google Analytics. The best advice we give to our clients when discussing goals is, keep them extremely simple and limit the variable. This gives you the best chance to truly understand success. If you immediately start with too many options you might not effectively separate what is working, with what isn’t.

Setting up goals

(Below is an excerpt from
After you’ve thought about what your goals will be, start setting up them up by following these instructions: Sign in to your Google Analytics account at Select the account that contains the profile you’ll be creating goals in from the Overview page. Find the profile for which you will be creating goals, and click ‘Edit’ under the ‘Actions’ column. Under the ‘Goals’ section, select one of the four sets to create your goal in (each set contains up to five goals) and click ‘Add goal.’ You can create up to 20 goals if you use all four sets.

Name the Goal

Enter the goal’s name so that you can quickly recognize it when viewing reports. Turn the goal ‘On’ or ‘Off.’ If you choose ‘On,’ that means you want Google Analytics to track this conversion goal at this time. Turning it ‘Off’ will only make the goal inactive without deleting it.

Select the goal’s position

The pull-down menu lets you select a goal’s position from within a set so that you can control the order in which it appears from the ‘Goals’ tab in your reports, or lets you move a goal from one set to another. Decide one of the three types of goals you want. This can be URL Destination, Time on Site, or Pages/Visit.

Defining funnels

After you’ve entered your goal information, define a funnel if you’ve selected a ‘URL Destination’ goal type: Click ‘Yes, create a funnel for this goal. ‘Enter the ‘URL’ of the first page of your conversion funnel. This page should be a page that is common to all users working their way towards your goal. For example, if you are tracking user flow through your checkout pages, do not include a product page as a step in your funnel. Please note: Funnel URLs are treated as regular expressions. For this reason, you can include wildcard characters and use other regular expression methods if you want to match more than a single URL. Learn more about regular expressions.

Enter a ‘Name’

If this step is a ‘Required step’ in the conversion process, select the checkbox to the right of the step. If this checkbox is selected, users reaching your goal page without traveling through this funnel page will not be counted as conversions. Learn more about the ‘Required Step’ option in a funnel. Continue entering goal steps until your funnel has been completely defined. You may enter up to 10 funnel steps, or as few as a single step. Click Save Changes to create this Goal and funnel, or Cancel to exit without saving.


After you have set up your goals add the page to your dashboard to quickly and conveniently. Within a few hours, you should see data collection taking place. If you aren’t seeing the data collection or if the numbers don’t seem to add up, look through some common errors: Using, which isn’t needed in the page description. – Not using the correct expression. (see google definitions) Not using the correct page names. Look through the steps provided by Google above again if they are all correct, make sure the pages are tagged with the correct analytics or give your analytics professional a call.