How to Set Goals in Google Analytics

If you are to measure whether or not you are on the right path, it is good to know where you’re going. Goals will help you do that… Goals in Google Analytics are no different. If you want to create a full Audit of your Google Analytics account you can probably find some help using my Google Analytics audit template.


Really Jesper… are we doing this??

I really don’t want to make this into yet another blog post expecting you to be dumb, just so that I can cram all the keywords I need to get into this post into it… but I sort of have to. So if you’re an averagely (yes that is a word) smart, then just watch the video, cause the rest of this text will simply be about getting all the right words into this post to give it a chance at ranking… <3

Setting goals in Google Analytics

What you should and shouldn’t us Google Analytics Goals to do!

There are essentially two types of goals that people want to set up in Google Analytics. Those who are based on events – meaning a user clicks a certain button – and those based on the user visiting a page.

The first you want to use in combination with Google Tag Manager, whilst the second one can be used if you have – let’s say – a /thankyou.html-page where you send people once they have completed a goal.

You do not want to use the goals for either adjusted bounce rate nor do you want to set it up for time on site or number of visited pages. The reason for that is you can use Google Tag Manager and events for such a job and considering you only have about 20 goals per view available, I believe that events are much better way to solve this.

Goals can be found

You can set up your goals by browsing to Admin in the bottom left corner at the time of writing. Then you find it for the view all the way to the right, third option from the top.

Setting Goals in Google Analytics.

Create a new goal in Google Analytics

Once you hit the Goal link in the menu, a new window appears and you are able to select to create a “New goal” by clicking the red button in the top left corner of the box.

Create a new Goal

Give your goal a name in Google Analytics

Start out by giving your goal a name that you are able to understand clearly yourself. Usually it doesn’t matter how long this goal name is, however since you are going to want to create reports using different goals, it is always important to have the main phrase that you are using the goal to measure – such as Submit Email or Become Member.

Give your Goal a name.

Decide the goal funnel if you use Destination as your goal in Google Analytics

If you chose to create a goal that is activated once a user reach a /thankyou.html or any other kind of page on your website, you can do so by selecting Destination as your option for goal setup.

Once you have selected destination you click continue and you are able to setup one or several stages that the user has to go through in order to reach that goal page. That might be such things as a checkout funnel with a shopping cart and a totals view, but it might also be such a thing as a sign up flow to a member website.

Create a funnel if your goal is a destination.

Use Events to Set up Goals in Google Analytics

If you on the other hand use events as your goal in Google Analytics, you should open a window where you can see the events you have in use. Then you should copy and paste them into your Category, Action and Label respectively.


Event Action

Event Label

The last and final step is to save the goal and then check whether or not it is loading. You can do that by hitting the verify button on the page where you setup the events or the goal flow.

If you want to know how to get events setup for buttons in Google Analytics through Google Tag Manager you can watch this video which takes you through all the steps.

How to setup button click tracking for Google Tag Manager.

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