How to Track Affiliate Conversions in Google Analytics?

How to Measure Affiliate Conversions in Google Analytics?

The most valuable functionality in Google Analytics is undoubtedly the “Conversion Goals”, which you can also use for affiliate marketing campaigns. You can find out how many (and which) visitors converted to your affiliate offers by working with Goals.

Google Analytics is one of the reasons the Internet is such a powerful affiliate marketing medium. It reveals whether an affiliate marketing campaign or website works or not. 

Incredibly valuable and worth gold for those who know how to handle it. 

Which data is important now, and which is not? Let’s find out!

What is a conversion goal?

You speak of conversion when the visitor of a website takes action. For example, registering for a newsletter, downloading a brochure, ordering a product, or contacting us via a contact form. 

A conversion goal is a page within the website on which the action was taken, for example, after ordering a product, the overview page of what the visitor has ordered. Or after contacting via a form, the page on which your visitor is thanked for contacting us. Or leaving your website through the affiliate link, you have posted.

What’s the point of these seemingly useless metrics?

By indicating all conversion goals of the website in Google Analytics, Google Analytics can look at the data differently. For example, it is pleasing to see that 100 visitors come from Google. Still, it only becomes valuable when you see that 50% of the visitors converted on your affiliate offer.

Suppose you have determined the URL of the page where visitors end up after requesting information or purchasing a product. In that case, you go to your Google Analytics account to enter this URL as a conversion goal. After you have logged in, click on “administrator” in the top right corner. On this page, choose the tab “goals” and click on + Goal, after which you enter the relevant URL.

The advantages…

All data within Google Analytics can now be viewed differently. Not only traffic from other websites can be labeled as valuable or pointless. The visitor behavior within the website also gets an extra dimension, so it can be interesting to see that many people who contact us have read a particular blog article.

The same goes for searches. 

Which visitors actually become leads? 

When they search for the name of the company? Or if they search for the name of a product or service? This information can be of great value for future affiliate marketing campaigns or writing content for the website. The advantages at a glance:

  • Expensive banner campaigns can be tracked on conversion and, if they are unsuccessful, immediately canceled.
  • Links with a partner can now be measured by value, will there ever be a partner link conversion?
  • New affiliate marketing campaigns, such as twittering, e-marketing, youtube, RSS, are becoming measurable. For example, you can stop that e-marketing campaign that is not working and get the extra budget to put videos on youtube if they yield conversions.
  • Traffic within the website can be measured on conversion. Which pages within the website ensure conversion or which do not at all.
  • Searches can be assigned a value. In fact, a distinction can be made between searches that yield visitors, leads, or customers.

Conclusion

By working with conversion goals, the data within Google Analytics becomes a lot more valuable. It also provides a handle for people working in affiliate marketing & communication to convince their managers. Based on principle or tradition, advertisements are often made on certain media (or simply because the competitor does it too) with Google Analytics. 

The conversion goals can be demonstrated in an instant whether these advertising funds are worth their investment. Is that link with the partner really that interesting?

Is that banner for your affiliate marketing campaign doing as good as we expect?

Everything can be made visible.

Consider, for example, your links to external websites or downloads such as a PDF. Do you have other experiences with affiliate conversions or conversion goals, or do you think I have missed important information?

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Elizabeth Sramek
Elizabeth is a Senior Content Manager at Scaleo. Currently enjoying the life in Prague and sharing professional affiliate marketing tips. She's been in the online marketing business since 2006 and gladly shares all her insights and ideas on this blog.
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