Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Driving eBay Traffic with Link Tagging and Urchin Tracker Scripts in Google Analytics

This is an advanced tip that concerns Google Analytics and link tracking. If you don't know what those are, I'd suggest taking some time exploring Mark McLaren's site, McBuzz.com (you can ask him questions, too, of course). McBuzz has a good mix of resources concerning SEO, SEM and Google Analytics. He offers video tutorials, articles and so on.

Ok - so link tracking.. or more specifically, Urchin Tracker scripts for Google Analytics. First the why: As an eBay seller, you want to figure out exactly where your traffic is coming from and which links on your pages are getting clicked. You can do these kinds of things with regular Web pages and Google Analytics. This is especially useful in situations where you educate customers and prospects about your particular products and industry on a "normal"/outside-eBay Web site and then drive them to your listings in eBay.

There are several ways analyze traffic. This post covers just a couple (and links to an article that shows you exactly how). Google Analytics is very robust and does more than what's covered here. With GA, you can set up goal pages, track conversion success, and figure out exactly what's working on your sites.

Let's say you want to figure out who's clicking on what links in your site. Google Analytics works if you set up pages within your site as conversion goals/targets. However, if the links are external, you can't place the Urchin Tracker code into someone else's page. If that's something you'd like to track (which is often the case with eBay listings), then take a look at the following link for the solution. This is from Sulli's Google Analytics Tips and Tricks by SkiSulli. He shows you the right script to place into your pages and recommends some ways to set it up. As you'll see, he also shows you how to make this work for email or "mailto:" links. If you want to figure out how many people are clicking on your email address link (and when, how fast, etc), then this is a great solution.

You can then track all of this activity automatically from within Google Analytics. As you get a better sense for what's driving traffic to your listings, you can then tweak your pages to get better conversion rates and more business to your eBay listings and stores.

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