Tool Tip Tuesday: What Are Multi-Funnel Tools in Google Analytics?

What You Need to Know About Multi-Funnel Tools in Google Analytics Reading Time: 3 minutes

Success in digital marketing requires constant monitoring of your efforts as well as the performance of the competition. Thankfully, marketing and automation tools can make this easier to achieve. Whether you are looking to analyze data, identify trends, or outcompete your biggest competitor for keywords, analytics, and other marketing tools can help. Because marketing processes and best practices continually evolve, it is essential to have an understanding of how your marketing toolkit works.

In today’s “Tool Tip”, we are spotlighting a tool that is valuable to businesses of all sizes: Google Analytics. Many companies already have a grasp on the fundamental insights Google Analytics can provide. Still, today we are looking at Multi-Channel Funnels and how they can help your business perform competitively.

What Are Multi-Channel Funnels in Google Analytics?

Google Analytics is a treasure trove of information about customer interactions, conversions, and more. An eCommerce transaction may be credited to a campaign, search, or ad that referred a user when they made a conversion, but what role did a prior website referral, ad, or website search play in the sale? What length of time passed between the initial interest of a user and their purchase on your site?

These are the kinds of insights you can glean from the Multi-Channel Funnel. Its primary goal is to show you how your multiple marketing channels work together to make conversions and sales. For example, many visitors purchase on your site after searching for you directly on Google. Still, they may have had an initial introduction to your brand while reading a blog or viewing a sponsored social media post. Multi-Channel Funnels work to show how previous sources and referrals contributed to your sales, allowing you to make well-informed decisions about your marketing spend.

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How to Analyze the Funnels

Multi-Channel Funnels consists of several reports, one of which is the Assisted Conversions report. This one is the most important for summarizing the roles of all your channels. Any given channel can play one of the following roles in a conversion path:

  • The last interaction is the one that immediately predates the conversion.
  • The assist interaction is the one that is on the path to conversion, but not the final action.
  • The first interaction is the first interaction a user has with your brand that initiates the conversion; it’s a type of assist interaction.

Analytics looks across all funnels and conversion paths to show you what role each funnel plays in the user path to conversion. For example, you may find that sponsored posts or Google Display ads play a significant role in first introducing a user to your brand, which can help justify continued use of this method to increase brand visibility.

Analyzing Conversion Paths

Among the reports available in the Multi-Channel Funnel, three can help your organization analyze conversion paths:

  • The Top Conversion Path report. This shows all the paths (channel interactions and their sequence) that led to a conversion, as well as the conversion rate from each path. This provides a holistic view of how your channels interact along a user’s path to conversion.
  • The Time Lag report. This shows how many conversions resulted from paths that are 0-12+ days long, organized by day. For example, you can see which conversions resulted from paths that were eight days long, five days long, or over 12 days. 
  • The Path Length report. This final report shows how many conversions occurred from 0-12 channel interactions, organized by the number of channels.

Together, these reports help you understand how each channel interacts along a path to conversion, as well as how long it takes for a person to convert or make a purchase.

How to Use Multi-Channel Funnel Reports

The primary advantage of Multi-Channel Funnel reports is justifying marketing spend. When you have a clear understanding of how your users interact with your funnels and which steps are essential to conversion, your business is well-poised to make informed marketing spend decisions that increase return on investment. With Multi-Channel Funnel reports, you can more accurately place a value on different types of traffic, content marketing, and segments of your PPC/SEO campaigns. You can also strategically align your campaigns that interact with one another well because you have an understanding of which first actions lead to second actions and nurture a prospect further down the funnel. 

Google Analytics is a boon for your business and marketing efforts. By regularly leveraging Multi-Channel Funnel reports, you can further pinpoint your optimization campaigns and discover which conversion paths provide the best return on investment.