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My Shopify store has xxx traffic but no sales! How can Google Analytics reports help me understand customers?

My Shopify store has xxx traffic but no sales! How can Google Analytics reports help me understand customers?

When following the developer team in the creation of the PageFly page builder app for Shopify stores, one of the most frequently debated topics on the forum was about traffic and sales. The familiar questions are 70,000 visits per month and no sales or Help!!! Why there are no sales on my Ecommerce Web Site!

So Shopify merchants are asking about the performance of the store and they are not aware where the problem lies. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at steps needed to investigate proactively. Not just waiting for someone to come and helps with a store review and solution.

We are all business owners, right? So to grow our business we have to learn more and understand “traffic” and users behavior.

Just ask yourself, what do we know about traffic? What does “traffic” mean? And where do we look at the details of website traffic?

Well, Shopify does well with simplifying Google Analytics data and explaining this data via Reports Tab.

image1 - shopify reports

In case you didn’t configure your Google Analytics account yet, just follow this step by step Shopify and Google Analytics setup guideline written earlier on our blog. Google Analytics and data tracking are essential and must do processes when you’re running an online store business.

So you must go to the source of the data and it’s Google Analytics dashboard. But hang on, which one is the right one to take a look?

    1. Where do customers come from? Which country?
    2. Landing Page. The first touch of your customers.
    3. Mobile, tablet and Desktop traffic. Which one drives sales?
    4. Page Loading Speed. Every page matters, every second costs sales and Conversion

Where do customers come from? Which country?

Well…Whether you drive traffic from seeding community forums, Facebook / Instagram / Google Adwords ads, email campaigns or just direct traffic from offline campaigns, have a look at the WHO behind the people who visited your online store.

Access to Google Analytics dashboard: https://analytics.google.com/analytics/web

You can find them via Audience -> GEO -> Location and the full list of countries on your table.

image2 - google analytics location report

So why look at this data? One obvious thing that online store owners often do is targeting too broadly. It’s a common mistake when we are not experts and set up ads to launch broadly to cover more audiences.

The budget might go to countries with the cheap bidding and to get sales we need to raise the ads budget. However, that’s not the best scenario. So when you get to know the list of countries/regions which don’t bring conversions -> exclude it from your targeting and save your budget for further experiments.

Landing Page. The first touch of your customers.

Ok, moving slowly to the next step to check is the Landing Page report tab. The landing page is the page where your visitor makes the first visit. It’s quite important to figure out where your customers have their first experience.

To access this report, you go through Behavior -> Site Content -> Landing Pages. Pay attention to the “Bounce Rate” column. Bounce rate means that if the visitor browses your website, doesn't do anything and leaves. Usually, if the target audience is wrong, the bounce rate will be high.

image3 - google analytics landing pages

Within that report, you might ask where users come from to this or another landing page? It’s easy to figure out where your visitors came from. First of all, you click on the landing page URL in the column Landing Page you want to know in detail.

Next step is to click on the Secondary Dimension drop-down menu and choose Source. You’ll know how customers found your website and land precisely that landing page.

image4 - secondary dimension

After executing the above step you’ll see the report like the below image. Whether you drive traffic from social channels or purchased reviews from influencers blogs, the data will show up in this report. I

f you configuredGoogle Analytics Enhanced E-commerce tracking and Shopify, you’ll see the column E-commerce with clear traffic & sales data.

This report is very valuable since it gives you a clear picture with ROI (Return On Investment). Let’s say you booked a paid review from an influencer and the question is whether they are worth such investment. Numbers will tell you and help with the business decision.

image5 - google analytics source

So when we got to know which websites drive traffic that converts. What’s next?

Mobile, tablet and Desktop traffic. Which one drives sales?

You can find the user's device report via Audience -> Mobile -> Overview.

From here you can see how your potential customers go about shopping on your store. So right now, when you are reading this paragraph, please have a look at your store on your mobile device. Check the purchase flow and start with the home page. Try to add the product to the cart then proceed to the checkout page.

Is it easy to discover the product on a mobile device? Is it intuitive to navigate across the whole store from page to page?

image6 - mobile report

Combine the data from Landing Page report and use Secondary Dimension with filter “Device Category”. You’ll see different pictures between desktop vs mobile user experience. In particular, look at Average Session Duration. On mobile devices, it’s just half compared with desktop devices. The user experience is different.

Google Page Speed testing tool might help you with estimating the performance of your Shopify store on desktop and mobile devices.

image7 - mobile report devices

Mobile traffic nowadays is crucial, and as we have seen in the Shopify 2016 annual report, the mobile traffic overpassed the desktop traffic.

So mobile purchases from year to year matter more and requires individual attention. For example, if you drive the traffic to the landing page the open question will be whether it’s well optimized for mobile devices or not.

What about the speed performance of your online store on desktop vs. mobile devices? The first thing I’ll do is choose Shopify themes designed with the mindset of “mobile first.” The theme’s performance matters because it’ll directly affect to your daily sales and your Shopify store conversion rate.

image8 - shopify mobile purchases

Page Loading Speed. Every page matters, every second costs sales and conversion.

Page Speed reports show you how each page of your store performs. Not all browsers load your content equally, and the page loading speed varies between countries. And it’s important again to take a look at your target audience.

Where do they come from? You need to focus only on your target audience and make sure that the performance issue won’t be the cause of the high abandonment rate.

How to find this report:

Behavior -> Site Speed -> Page Timings

image9 - page timing

And now you realize that when choosing Shopify you have chosen the hosting provider as well since Shopify is the platform and it handles the technical part as well.

You might be wondering, how do I monitor the performance? Shopify has the status page which detailed report about all incidents happened in the past.

image10 - shopify status

As we have seen in the examples above, it’s obvious that Google Analytics can explain in detail what’s behind “traffic visits.”

It can help you answer the question like “WHO are my customers?” and “WHERE did they come to know about me?”.

Getting this valuable information will support you with marketing activities of your Shopify store. I hope this blog post gave you the insight about the importance of “traffic” and “sales.”

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