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How to name events in google analytics

Jere Meic

Jere Meic

This article was created by Jere Meic. He is a data enthusiast with cross-channel expertise and strong creative field background, specialized in Google Analytic, Google Ads and Web Analytics. Currently working as a data analyst at Human Interaction Company, one of the market leaders in Web Development industry in Croatia.

Each correctly configured Google Analytics account has Events tracking feature set up. It help us to better understand how, why and where the action which we want our website users to leap into, appears or does not appear.

In order to make an in-depth analysis and to define a clear structure in the report, it is important to correctly name all Event segments. Without a proper system of event naming, the analysis will always start with data clean-up and manual aggregation and will make it difficult to find required data in the report by a logical method.

 

rubik cube

 

In this post I will show you one of the strategies of proper events naming that provides the data structure sufficiently intuitive that even a nonexpert will be able to pose a question that he is interested in and find the answer himself, without analyst instructions being required. 

Each event has three segment which are to be named:

  • Event category
  • Event action
  • Event label

For each of these levels the name is given in the way that the segment hierarchically make a whole which, naturally, has a logical link. Who wants illogical and messy data in the report? Google thought of that and provided pre-defined variables that significantly facilitate the work. Variables are used for dynamic name retrieval from the data layer and attributes from the page code, so that you would not have to create, for each item, a separate event  with fixed names of category, action and label.  

 

google analytics

 

Event Category Naming

Event category should describe a type of page, a part of a page or type of the module in which an event occurred. You should try to use the existing categories whenever possible. New categories should be opened only if it makes any sense and if such a category will gather a sufficient number of events, at least three, and preferably more.  

Example:

Event Category = {{Page type}}: Homepage, Product Landing Page, Listing Page, Product Details Page, Checkout, Cart

or

Event Category = {{Global module type}}: Header, Footer, Right Sidebar, Left Sidebar, Pop Up Window

 

Event Action Naming

Proper naming of an event action should be structured in the way to describe which action has been taken and where it was taken. I suggest that you avoid simple names such as “Click” or “Open”. Such names are too generic and, in fact, uselessly occupy the slot and do not bring any value in the reports.

Since several events may also have the same action name, you should take care that these actions are differentiated at some of the remaining segments, event category or label. In most situations, the action name should start with a verb, for example “Clicked Left Sidebar” or “Opened Pop Up Window”. The only difference relates to actions which were not triggered by users, such as “Video Pre-Roll” when tracking video ad events that trigger automatically.  

 

Examples:

Event Action =  {{Action}} {{Action Location}}: Submitted Inquiry Form, Clicked Recommendation 1 top, Completed Form Field, Clicked Cover Photo Link, Clicked CTA Button left

 

brainstorming


Event Label Naming

Event label names should describe specific information relating to an event. This is event segment that is more flexible and here you can freely select the name which, by subsequent analyses, will be the easiest to identify features of Event that you want to explore. 

URL destinations, Percentage of scroll depth, Clicked text, Click URL, Click Class etc. are used commonly.  

If there is no relevant additional detail that would be useful as Event label, you are free to leave the label blank. 

In situations where there is a need to include several names, split these with a separator |. It is important that you take care of complexity of the structure in order not to unnecessarily complicate the data. 

 

Example:

Event Label =  {{Click text}}: Operate, Service, Buy, Build, Insure, Find

or

Event Label =  {{Click text}}: Lend | Invest | Get credit

or

Event Label =  {{Click URL}}: exsample.com/product-landing-page

 

Examples 

 

brainstorming and stickers

 

Now I will present to you the examples that I promised at the beginning of the text. Examples are made according to the Event Category={{Global module type}} format. Such name settings enables tracking of all interactions on that page, which relate to global module, into the related Event Category. This can be important for you because global modules are those appearing throughout the page, and some, such as Header and Footer, on all parts of the page. 

 

Header Clicks – CTA Button

Event Category = Header

Event Action = Clicked CTA Button

Event Label = example.com/pricing_plans

 

Sidebar Clicks – Download Links

Event Category = Left Sidebar

Event Action = Clicked Download Guide

Event Label = https://example.com/download-free-google-analytics-guide

 

global module category

 

This is how it looks like in Google Analytics. This setting provides insight into efficiency of individual module for certain actions and ways in which users interact with the content depending on its location.

 

PopUp Window  Clicks – Subscribe

Event Category = PopUp Window

Event Action = Submitted Newsletter Form

Event Label = Subscribe 

 

Footer Clicks – Disclosure Notice

Event Category = Footer 1

Event Action = Clicked Footer Menu Link

Event Label = https://example.com/disclosure-notice/

 

The following are examples relating to type of page, or Event Category={{Page Type}}. By setting this structure of the event names we ensure that all interactions linked to the Page Type are placed  into designated category.

 

Homepage Clicks – Lead Button

Event Category = Homepage

Event Action = Clicked Lead Button

Event Label = example.com/send-inquiry

 

PDP  Clicks – Cross Sell Product

Event Category = Product Details Page

Event Action = Clicked Cross Sell Product

Event Label = Add To Cart | Quick View | Wishlist

 

page type event category

 

The Graph shows how it could look like in Google Analytics. This setting allows you to compare the way in which pages are performed depending on type and, where required, additional detailed research at the level of Label.  

 

Listing Page Clicks – Single Product Action

Event Category = Product Listing Page

Event Action = Clicked Single Product

Event Label = See more | Add To Cart | Quick View | Wishlist

 

Cart Clicks – Up Sell Products

Event Category = Cart Page

Event Action = Clicked Up Sell Product

Event Label = {{DLV – Product Name}} See more | Add To Cart | Quick View | Wishlist

 

As already mentioned, it happens that certain event does not fall under the Global Module or Page Type.  In such situations you just do your best to estimate which way of data collecting is most practical. A good example is the scroll depth: 

 

Scroll Tracking

Event Category = Scroll Tracking

Event Action = Scrolled Listing Pages

Event Label = Scrolled 20%

or

Scroll Tracking

Event Category = Scroll Tracking

Event Action = Scrolled {{Page URL}}

Event Label = Scrolled 20%

 

Tips

Be detailed with naming, avoid generic names such as Button or Click. You will save quite a lot of work afterwards and data will be of higher quality.  

Pre-plan the name structure so that events have logical position and that events are easily analysable. 

Do not use events to track the data by which it is possible to identify a person. 

 

paper and pen

 

Conclusion

When naming an event, it does not matter which system you selected, but it is important that any future changes and actions that you intend to track on the page can easily be integrated into the existing Event structure.  In this way you cut planning and implementation time, and the data are more easily available to other colleagues in the company. 

Next time we shall discuss the data layers and attributes and the way in which, through these layers and attributes, you may track on your web page anything you imagine.