When we start with any e-commerce client we always talk about the importance of measuring conversions and establishing a CPA (cost-per-acquisition). With the GAnalytics e-com module in place this is fairly straightforward to do. Or at least it appears so on the surface.
The reality is that the e-commerce module under reports the number of conversions generated by AdWords. Why? Because the e-commerce module assigns the sale only to the channel of the last click.
Now, think about your own behaviour when you purchase something – do you just click once and purchase, or do you go away and possibly return several times before entering your credit card details?
Of course the value of the item you are purchasing influences how many times you return as a buyer. Using the Top Conversion Path report in Google Analytics, we’ve laid out two reports side by side below. On the left is a low average order value (<£50) website and on the right is a high average order value (>£500) site.
Notice anything different in the lengh of the paths?
To try and understand the true influence of AdWords (and other channel) conversions then you need to run the Assisted Conversion report in Analytics. This report will include sales where the first (or a subsequent) click came from AdWords, but the final click came from another channel, most usually Direct. In other words, AdWords found you the customer but another channel closed the sale.