I have always been a big believer in tracking mini goals. Abandonment occurs earlier than you may think: you are not going to convert someone if she is not able to get to the product detail page first. Or maybe a visitor is not ready to pull out his credit card, but gives you permission to continue the dialog by subscribing to your newsletter. That is a worthy goal to track.
There is another reason to add upper funnel goals: more data to work with. If your e-commerce conversion rate is 2%, are you going to ignore the other 98%?
Where this clearly comes into play is Multi-Channel Funnels. You only get conversion data from the goals you set up. If you only have data for relatively few transactions you would be really limiting yourself.
Try this for fun: Set up a goal for non-bounce visits. I like that goal in any case because many visitors who bounce off your site are never going to convert anyway. Set your sights on those who give you at least one click!
After you have collected some data, fire up your Multi-Funnel reports.
Again, if you only have an e-commerce goal funnel you’ll only get data on those conversions.
In this case I have 249 Sale Confirmations, but over 2,400 non-bounce goals! Far more data to work with.
Lets take a specific example: the (not provided) keyword issue. If I look for (not provided) keywords in any interaction, I get 19 different results. By the way, I set up some custom groupings to illustrate the point more easily and not reveal the actual keywords.
Contrast that to the non-bounce goal:
I have 5 times as many data points than before and I can now dig a little deeper. How do visitors interact with Adwords, brand and non-brand terms etc? I may never know what’s hidden in those (not provided) keywords, but at least we can know a little more about those people who interact multiple times with our sites via multiple channels.
In any case, the point of this post is to create more goals – if only for the plain reason to get more data. I know that Google Analytics will have to work a little harder when you throw in additional goals, but I am sure they don’t mind…