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How to Set Up Google Analytics Goals for Your WordPress Site

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Do you want to track key metrics like email signups or sales for your site?

If you want your site to be successful, then you need detailed metrics like which pages are getting you the most signups, which traffic source is producing the best results, and more.

In this article, we’ll show you how to set up Google Analytics goals for your WordPress site.

Set up Google Analytics goals for your WordPress site

What Are Goals in Google Analytics?

Goals are user interactions that you could track in the older version of Google Analytics called Universal Analytics.

You could set up goals to measure conversions, track sales, email sign-up forms, and more. All this can help you make more money online and increase your website conversions.

However, Google Analytics 4 (GA4), which is the latest version of Google’s analytics platform, replaces Goals with Events.

Formerly, you could see both goals and events in Universal Analytics. If you wanted to measure something as a conversion, then you could mark it as a goal. Despite sounding simple, it was not, and the process was very confusing.

To streamline it and make it easier for users to track user behavior, Google has removed goals from GA4.

Why Would You Need to Create Good Goals in Google Analytics

Previously with goals, you could find out all sorts of details about your WordPress site. However, the new events tracking system also helps you uncover the same user behavior on your site. For instance:

Creating the right goals and events to track for your site was very important. If you have an online store, there’s not much point in setting a goal to track how many people visit your About page. Instead, you should track how many customers buy from you.

Let’s look at how to set up goals in Google Analytics 4. Here’s what we’re going to cover. Use the quick links to jump straight to that part of the tutorial:

Setting Up Google Analytics in WordPress with MonsterInsights

The best way to set up Google Analytics is using MonsterInsights. It is the best analytics plugin for WordPress automatically sets up tracking for you, and saves a lot of work.

For a more comprehensive overview, check out our MonsterInsights review.

First, you’ll need to install and activate the MonsterInsights plugin. For more details, please check out our guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Note: You’ll need the Pro version of the plugin or higher to unlock advanced tracking features and reports like the eCommerce report and the form conversions report. There is also a MonsterInsights Lite version you can use for free to get started.

After activating MonsterInsights, you’ll see the welcome screen in your WordPress dashboard. Simply click the ‘Launch the Wizard’ button and follow the onscreen instructions.

Launch setup wizard

For more help, check out our instructions on how to install Google Analytics on your site using MonsterInsights.

Automatically Track Goals and Events by Using MonsterInsights

Now that you’ve connected Google Analytics with your WordPress site, you can use MonsterInsights to set up events and goals automatically.

This method is recommended for beginners because you don’t have to manually create goals, edit code, and worry about your tracking working properly.

MonsterInsights helps you track conversions like eCommerce sales, form submissions, file downloads, link clicks, video plays, and more.

Let’s take a closer look at each of these in detail.

Tracking eCommerce Conversion in WordPress

Do you want to find out how many visitors are converting into paying customers?

In Google Analytics, you’d have to set up goals to track specific actions customers perform. This can be tricky for beginners, and it might require editing the tracking code.

However, the MonsterInsights eCommerce addon lets you easily track data from a WooCommerce store. You can also use it with MemberPress, LifterLMS, Easy Digital Downloads, and other eCommerce plugins.

Use enhanced ecommerce option

For more details, please see our step-by-step guide on how to set up eCommerce tracking in WordPress.

The best part is that you don’t have to modify the tracking code. MonsterInsights handles everything else for you.

After setting up tracking, you can head to Insights » Reports and click on the ‘eCommerce’ tab to view your report. From here, go to Overview.

View eCommerce report in MonsterInsights

Next, you should see the overall stats for your online store. For instance, conversion rate, transactions, revenue, and average order value.

Besides that, you’ll also see your top-performing products that generate the most revenue.

Ecommerce overview report in MonsterInsights

You won’t have to manually set up goals or events to track eCommerce conversions. The plugin will let you see all sorts of other insights, like your top conversion sources, the total of products added to carts, and the total removed from carts.

You can even see how many days it typically takes people to make a purchase and how often people visit before making a purchase.

Top conversion sources

MonsterInsights also shows the percentage of new customers who bought a product for the first time from your store.

It even shows a percentage of abandoned checkouts. You can use this data to reduce cart abandonment and convert users into paying customers. Under the ‘Funnel’ report, you can see a visualization of this.

Ecommerce funnel report

Tracking Form Submissions in Google Analytics

Another great way to use Google Analytics and MonsterInsights is to track form conversions.

You can do this for any type of form. Here are just a few examples:

  • Non-fiction author: A form where people sign up for your email newsletter to hear about your upcoming books.
  • Realtor: A contact form where prospective clients fill in their details so you can call them back and arrange viewings.
  • Personal trainer: A booking form that customers use to book and pay for their personal training session.
  • Restaurant: A form that customers use for ordering food delivery.

MonsterInsights works with all WordPress contact form plugins and helps you track form submissions.

To start tracking form conversions in MonsterInsights, go to Insights » Addons and find the Forms addon. Simply click the Install button beneath it to install and activate it.

Install forms addon

This addon lets you track form submissions as ‘Events’ in Google Analytics 4. You don’t have to set up anything extra.

Once you’ve installed and activated the addon, you’re done! Just go to Insights » Reports and click on the ‘Forms’ tab to see your report.

After you’ve had some form submissions, it’ll look something like this:

Forms report

Tracking Link Clicks and File Downloads in Google Analytics

MonsterInsights automatically adds tracking for link and button clicks on your WordPress site. It works out of the box, and you don’t have to manually set up goals or events for tracking different user actions on your site.

You can view the report inside your WordPress dashboard. Simply go to Insights » Reports and click the ‘Publishers » Overview’ tab.

Publisher overview report in MonsterInsights

For instance, you can see which outbound links users click the most on your website.

Using this information, you can sign up for affiliate programs, get backlinks, submit guest posts, and uncover partnership opportunities.

Outbound and affiliate links report

If you have affiliate links on your site, then MonsterInsights also tracks them in Google Analytics. You can see your top-performing affiliates and promote them throughout your site to get more conversions.

MonsterInsights also automatically tracks file downloads on your site. If you offer downloadable content like ebooks, software, plugins, PDFs, and spreadsheets, then the analytics plugin tracks them in Google Analytics.

Top file download links report

Tracking Video Plays in Google Analytics

If you have video content embedded on your site, then MonsterInsights can track them in Google Analytics and show which media content performs the best.

It automatically tracks YouTube and Vimeo embeds along with other videos uploaded to your Media Library.

All you need to do is install the MonsterInsights Media addon by going to Insights » Addons from your WordPress dashboard.

Install media addon

Once the addon is active, you can view reports in your WordPress dashboard.

Simply head to Insights » Reports and click the ‘Media’ tab.

View media report

Here, you’ll see a graph of how many people played videos on your site in the past 30 days.

If you scroll down, then you can view more details about individual videos. For instance, the report will show video plays, average watch time, average percentage watched, and completion rate for each piece of media content.

Video details report

For more details, please see our guide on how to track video analytics in WordPress.

How to Replace Goals with Events in Google Analytics 4

As we mentioned before, Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the new version of Google’s analytics platform. One of the main differences between GA4 and Universal Analytics is that there are no goals in the latest version.

That’s because Google Analytics 4 uses a completely different method of tracking and recording data. Instead of goals, it uses events to track user interactions and activities on your website.

You can create a custom event by logging into your GA4 property and then heading to the Admin settings.

Go to admin settings

After that, go to the Property column.

Then, you can simply click on the ‘Events’ option.

Go to events settings

Next, you will need to add a new event in GA4.

Go ahead and click the ‘Create event’ button.

Create a new event

A new window will now slide in from the right, where all your custom events will be listed once they’re created.

You can click the ‘Create’ button to get started.

Create a custom event

Next, you will need to enter details for your custom event.

You can start by entering a custom event name. GA4 already has many prebuilt events, so you can select one from the dropdown menu. For example, we will choose the ‘file_download’ event for this tutorial.

Select an event name

When you select an event name, GA4 will automatically enter the specific Parameter and Operator for the event. In this case, the event will be tracking the ‘event_name’ when it ‘equals’ a Value you will enter next.

In the ‘Value’ field, we will enter ‘.pdf’ so it tracks the number of downloads when a user downloads a file with the PDF extension.

You might also use .epub for ebooks or even a specific word you use to organize filenames such as ‘v2’ or ‘_2023version.’

Enter event parameter operator and value

Once you’ve entered all the details, don’t forget to click the ‘Create’ button at the top.

You should now see your new event under the ‘Custom events’ area of your dashboard.

View custom event

Next, you can view reports to see the performance of your custom events.

Simply head to Reports » Engagement » Event: Event name from the menu on your left.

View custom events data

Setting up Events in GA4 is pretty easy. However, if you want to track multiple things, it can take a long time.

That’s why we think that MonsterInsights is definitely the way to go if you want a simple way to set up event and goal tracking in Google Analytics.

Setting up manual events in Google Analytics might work for you if you’re confident using the GA4 interface, or if you have a lot of extra time on your hands.

What matters is that you create and track meaningful goals and events for your site. This is where MonsterInsights is beneficial, as you can use the data to boost signups, increase sales, and make more money or impact with super easy setup and reporting.

We hope this article helped you learn how to set up Google Analytics goals for your WordPress site. You may also want to see our guide on how to increase your website traffic and our pick for the best email marketing services.

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Editorial Staff

Editorial Staff at WPBeginner is a team of WordPress experts led by Syed Balkhi with over 16 years of experience in WordPress, Web Hosting, eCommerce, SEO, and Marketing. Started in 2009, WPBeginner is now the largest free WordPress resource site in the industry and is often referred to as the Wikipedia for WordPress.

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Reader Interactions

7 CommentsLeave a Reply

  1. Syed Balkhi says

    Hey WPBeginner readers,
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  2. Ellen says

    Hello ,

    Thank you for all this really useful information.

    I am an absolute beginner so I need to learn all this stuff.


  3. Raymond Crean says

    Thank You for creating such a wonderful and extremely informative article on using Google Analytics Goals.
    I will try manually setting up some goals using this tutorial but also later may opt to use the suggested MonsterInsights WordPress Plug-In.
    Thank You. :)

  4. Felix Okoye says

    Thank you so much for this article… Well in-depth… I’ve been getting notifications on my Google Analytics to set up goals but don’t know where to start… Now, I see it well explained… Going over to Analytics to do the needful… Thanks once more…

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