Google Analytics: Tracking “Completer” Pages

Completer Pages

<< See the Parent article on Functionalism.
Functionalism series by Think Around Corners.

Over the next 3 weeks we’re going to do something differently.

Instead of doing our Tactics-Strategies-Vision thing, we’re going to do a series on Functionalism. Each article will be about one type of Functionalism page.

Why are we doing this?

Functionalism is very important. Google Analytics is very important (we’re assuming that you use it regularly!) Putting them both together will help you build the website you dreamed of. You’ll see your website in a different way, and that will help you make great functional changes to the design. Which will make you money!

Functionalism: Completer page.

The Completer page.

Web Page Type #1: Completers.

Let’s take a simple example of a simple page type, first. You all know what completers are: they’re Thank You pages. You know, those pages you get at the end of filling out a form.

Most of you out there think that it’s just a nice way of saying, “Thank you for filling out this form!” But we’ll show you below how this underused page gives you quite a bit of information about your potential customers.

An example of a visitor either (1) exiting the site or (2) re-engaging the site.

An example of a visitor either (1) exiting the site or (2) re-engaging the site.

Definition: Completers.

  • Definition of Completers. Completers signal to the visitor they have completed a process, like filling out a form. But they can also drive additional engagement.
  • Page example: The Thank You page is a perfect example. The visitors has done something that took time. Now, however, is the PERFECT time to ‘re-engage’ the visitor to browse your website further.
  • How? You limit the number of links off that page. You create strong ‘calls to action’ about those links. Then you track where they go.

Google Analytics integration.

How to measure a completer page in GA.

Completer pages are an opportunity to gauge visitor interest. What you want to find is the ‘thank you’ page URL (that must be different from the ‘form’ page URL). Then you want to track exits and re-engagements:

Goto: GA > Content > Top Content > Navigation Summary

Web Functionalism: A converter page in Google Analytics.

This shows the % of re-engagement vs. exits from the Thank You page.

What can you determine in GA?

  • % Exits. % of exits from Thank You page shows the number of visitors that left your site after completing the form (or whatever you had the visitor do). 37% is ok, could be better.
  • % Next Pages. Total % of next pages shows you the % of visitors that clicked back to your website from the Thank You page and ‘re-engaged’. 63% is pretty good, could be better.
  • Content. See the bracket above? These are the pages (and the % of each page) that the visitor clicked back to after the Thank You page. This shows you general interest of visitor. Of course, there are reasons other than interest that might have brought them back to that page, but hey, it’s statistics – we can assume that % error is the same for any of the next pages (and therefore errors cancel out). Note that ‘vacation packages’ is a popular page to re-engage on (this is a Costa Rica vacation site.)
  • Note that the same page is mentioned as a ‘next page’, /contact-form-itinerary-custom.shtml. These are potentially ‘bounce backs’ from the form page – they incorrectly filled out the form and it brought them back to the same page form. Not so good at 14% – it probably means the form is too long, or too complicated. Time to shorten the form! It would probably also be a good idea to make sure that the form ‘error’ message coincides with a different URL, like /contact-form-itinerary-custom-error.shtml. That way, you could know for sure if the form is too complex.

In conclusion…

Completer pages are a great way to measure visitor interest. What % leave the site after completing? What % stay on the site – and where do they go? It can help you build better forms, too. It’s just one more piece of information in the arsenal of discovery.

Next article – Engager pages!

Greg Cox

Analytics Geek. Gregory likes Motorcycles, Cooking, and Sciencey stuff.