No matter how powerful Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce is, it won’t help you if you can’t turn it on.

In our last piece, we explained just how effective Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce is. We don’t want to repeat ourselves too much here, but we’ll say again that the plugin reveals more practical user data than ever before. This data can be used to fine-tune your site design around the preferences of your specific users.

Google Analytics eCommerce tracking is just as useful for business management as it is site design, showing you in real time the success of your individual products, posts, social media directives, and special promotions. To put it simply, Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce gives you the information you need to make the best business decisions.

… But you have to set it up first.

Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce

In this piece, we’re going to explain how to set up Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce for your online store. The plugin will start recording and analyzing your data once it’s turned on, so you want to install it as soon as possible – the sooner you do it, the more data you’ll have to draw from when you need it.

First we’ll explain how to set up the plugin using Javascript, which can be tedious and frustrating unless you understand coding well. Then, we’ll explain the much simpler process for LemonStand users, who can take advantage of our built-in integration.

Installing Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce with Javascript

If you’re confident in your coding, or at least patient, you could install the Enhanced eCommerce codes yourself, presuming you know what data you want.

Step 1: Upgrade to Universal Analytics

This step may not be necessary if you’ve already updated, but just in case you haven’t, Universal Analytics is mandatory for the Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce plugin.

If you haven’t upgraded yet, you should understand the consequences of universal analytics: all other tracking measures that aren’t affiliated with Google Analytics will need to their syntax changed. Universal Analytics uses a different syntax, so other tracking methods will need to be modified to coincide.

More frustrating is the fact that you can’t undo your upgrade, so you’ll need to overcome all syntax problems that come up. On the other hand, if you don’t have any other tracking set up, the upgrade is as easy as pushing a button.

… Literally. All you have to do is push the “Universal Analytics Upgrade” button. It’s located under Admin > Property. Then click the “Transfer” button, and you’re all set.

Note that the transfer may take between 24 – 48 hours. Don’t touch your tracking code until the transfer is complete.

Step 2: Install the Tracking Code on Each Page You Want to Track

Here’s where it gets confusing, or at least tedious. On each page you need to add the appropriate codes, and you need to add them in the correct order.

  1. ga(‘create’, ‘UA-XXXXXXXX-X’, ‘auto’); – This creates your tracker object and must always come first.
  1. ga(‘require’, ‘ec’); – This must precede the coding for the desired action.
  1. Specific Command – This is the specific function you want, or the specific command to collect a certain piece of data. We list the different choices that Google Analytics Enchanced eCommerce offers below.
  1. ga(‘send’, ‘XXXXXX’); – At the bottom of the page code, add the send command to send the appropriate data to Google Analytics.

Again, the order of the code is very important; it’s a sequential process, so if one step is wrong, the entire chain falls apart.

As for the specific commands you can enter, the choices are nearly endless. This is what makes Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce so great: the sheer magnitude of what it can track. What makes it less great, though, is the set up.

Here are some examples of the most popular tracking actions, to give you an idea of how it works.

  • ‘ec:addImpression’ + product ID – This measures the amount of impressions of a specific product, whether in category lists, search results, featured products, Top Sellers sections, Similar Products, personal recommendations, etc. Add it to any page besides the individual product page.
  • ‘ec:addProduct’ + product ID, followed by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘click’ – This measures the amount of clicks on a product. Again, this code works for any page except the product page.
  • ‘ec:addProduct’ + product ID, followed by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘add’ – This tracks when a product is added to the cart. Place it by the product page’s Add to Cart button.
  • ‘ec:addProduct’, followed by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘checkout’, {‘step’:1} – This tracks the amount of checkouts started.
  • ‘ec:addProduct’, followed by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘purchase’ – Likewise, this tracks the amount of checkouts completed.
  • ‘ec:addProduct’, followed by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘detail’ – Add this to the code for the product page to measure the views of the details.
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Of course, these are just the tip of the iceberg. You can measure refunds with ‘ec:setAction’, ‘refund’, for example, or the amount of times a product is removed from a cart by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘remove’. To learn more, read the Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce Tracking Guide in your regular Google Analytics interface.

Google Analytics Ecommerce Settings

Step 3: Turn on Enhanced eCommerce in Google Analytics

Last, you only have to enable Enhanced eCommerce within your Google Analytics account. You’ll find the option in:

Admin > View > eCommerce Settings

From there, you just switch it to “On.” Now you can view all the exclusive data the Enhanced eCommerce plugin gives you

Now pat yourself on the back, because it’s over… unless you want to undertake the next optional step for better structure.

Optional Step: Assign Category Names to Checkout Pages

If you’re the organized type, you can assign category names to checkout pages for quicker reference. As both the most important and most involved area of your eCommerce site, the checkout process can benefit from a little extra attention, and more dedicated data acquisition.

Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce Checkout Labeling

You can set the parameters for the Checkout Behaviour report specifically by pages of the checkout. First, directly below the area that you enabled the Enhanced eCommerce features (Admin > View > eCommerce Settings), you’ll see a smaller subsection called “Checkout Labeling.” Here, you can choose the names most appropriate to you for the stages/pages of your checkout.

Next, you’re going to have to fiddle with the code again. On the first checkout page, you’ll have to enter the following:

‘ec:addProduct’, followed by ‘ec:setAction’, ‘checkout’, {‘step’:1}

Then, for each additional page of the checkout, simply raise the {‘step’} number. These step numbers coincide with the checkout labels you wrote earlier.

Afterwards, you can check the detailed reports of your checkouts to discover your site’s biggest culprits in causing cart abandonment, and what you can do to combat them.

Installing Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce with LemonStand

Don’t have the stomach for coding? Don’t have the time? The LemonStand eCommerce platform, along with some other ones, offer integrated analytics so spare you the nitty-gritty of coding.

Step 1: Register a Google Analytics Account

Obviously, you’ll need Google Analytics to access the Enhanced eCommerce plugin. If you don’t have a Google Analytics account already, it’s easy to get one, and it’s free.

Simply go to the Google Analytics home page and click “Sign Up for Free” under the standard Google Analytics card. From there, follow the steps to set it up on your online store.

How to Set Up Google Analytics

How to Set Up Google Analytics

Just as with the DIY Javascript route, you must also first upgrade to Universal Analytics before installing the Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce plugin. Just read the description for Step 1 of the Javascript method above.

Step 2: Enter Your Google Analytics Tracking ID into LemonStand Admin

Your Google Analytics Tracking ID is in your analytics Admin once it’s already set up. You can find it in:

Admin > Property > Tracking Info > Tracking Code

The ID number is at the top, in a format like UA–XXXXXXXX-X. From here, you can simply copy and paste it.

Google Analytics Tracking ID

In the LemonStand admin, go to Integrations > Applications, and then click Configure & Activate for Google Analytics. At the bottom of the window, paste your Google Analytics ID in the field.

Step 3: Enable & Save

Now, all you have to do is enable the Google Analytics integration by clicking the switch. Don’t forget to save it afterwards by clicking the button at the top.

LemonStand integrates Google Analytics

LemonStand integrates with Google Analytics

With your tracking number entered in our system, LemonStand will handle all the coding and configuring. We insert each of Google’s recommended tracking codes on the appropriate pages of your site so that the data goes directly into your analytics reports. That lifts the burden of installing the code off you, so all you have to worry about is how to interpret the data that comes in.

We track the most relevant data, including product specifics for transactions and cart actions. For a complete list of all the data we configure your site for, read this page in our LemonStand Docs.

As our own personal customer privacy policy, LemonStand does not store or collect any of your store’s analytical data, with the exception of the Tracking ID.

Takeaway

For exactly what to do with that data, as in how to apply it to your site to improve business, stay tuned for our next articles. From here, we’ll dive into the more advanced techniques and applications of Google Analytics Enhanced eCommerce data.