A Guide to Chatbots and Google Analytics
Analytics  -  Oct 28, 2021

How to connect your chatbot to Google Analytics and start measuring results

Most marketers and website owners use Google Analytics to track website performance. When you introduce a chatbot to your website, especially one designed to increase conversions, you will need to learn how to track and view the metrics your chatbot is designed to improve.

This guide is for users new to setting up a chatbot and connecting it to a Google Analytics account. You'll find out how connections to Google Analytics are usually made (either by out-of-the-box functionality or third-party integrations), and how to think about setting up Google Analytics events.

Getting started with chatbots and Google Analytics

  • Each chatbot solution will have its own options for connecting to Google Analytics
  • Many will do this via a built-in plugin or API
  • Almost all chatbots are built to make this connection simple
  • Occasionally integration will require a third-party integration or coding. This will depend on your chosen chatbot solution and the complexity of the events you want to track.

Many chatbot solutions will come with integration or plug-in options for Google Analytics that make it straightforward for chatbot data to be sent directly to Google Analytics.

Most chatbot or conversional marketing platforms have a number of integrations available to use right away. When you've logged in to your chatbot platform and want to configure Google Analytics you can navigate to the plugins or integrations section, select Google Analytics, and log into your account. The connection is then made automatically by your chatbot tool.

This is the easy part. If you've researched your chatbot options and chosen one based on usability then it should be intuitive to set up this integration. If it's not intuitive then it may be worth testing other options, especially if you are making the most of a free trial period.

What to do when you've connected

Now that data is being shared between your chatbot software and Google Analytics you will need to set up the goals and events corresponding to the metrics you want to focus on.

There are a number different goal types in Analytics. Custom goals are going to be the most useful here – however, the most important thing at this stage is to decide on what exactly you should be tracking. There are many important metrics that can be captured via chatbot analytics, including:

  • Total users. The most simple metric – just the raw number of users interacting with your chatbot.
  • Active users. These are users you can be confident are reading messages from your chatbot. It's important to distinguish this from total users to determine the effectiveness of your chatbot messaging.
  • Engaged users. These will be users not only reading but responding to messages. If your chatbot is acting as an important conversion tool you will want to know what proportion of users are engaged, and how that changes as you develop your chatbot over time.
  • New users. You'll need new users to keep your metrics moving in the right direction. If this isn't working out you may need to adjust how your chatbot is deployed at the various stages of your website's user journey.

These are the most basic metrics you'll need to track within Google Analytics. Your marketing and sales teams will be able to weigh in more specific goals, for example content downloads, meeting requests, and visits to a specific page.

Once you've connected your chatbot to your Google Analytics account and have decided on the new goals you want to track you'll be able to view user interactions in real-time from within your Google Analytics dashboard.

Chatbot analytics and node.js

If your chatbot has development tools that support node.js you can set up highly customised events and sophisticated methods of managing leads and optimizing conversation flows. Each chatbot is unique and the easily available events in Google Analytics may not offer detailed enough information for you and your team.

For example, it's possible to include information on user intent in the data your chatbot sends to Google Analytics. Triggering an event via a GET request means deciding on what parameters to include in your "call", and by using these parameters it's possible to measure precise kinds of interactions and set up transparent attribution models.

Troubleshooting tracking issues may also require using node.js to modify how your events are triggered. If you see data from your chatbot that doesn't make sense then flag the issue as soon as possible and work with your web developer or analytics expert to diagnose and fix the issue. Your chatbot provider should also be help troubleshoot issues like this, as well as advising on how to make the most of your development tools.

Chatbots and eCommerce tracking

Google Analytics tracking can be more complicated when it comes to eCommerce. If you want to track buying events like product clicks and add to cart you'll usually use Google Tag Manager, which works alongside Google Analytics while requiring some additional setting up.

Tag Manager can be used as an easy way to add code snippets to your website and therefore can also be used to manage how a chatbot is tracked and deployed. Without an easy-to-use dedicated chatbot platform it can be easier to manage multiple code snippets across your website without relying on a web developer.

For effective eCommerce tracking it's likely you'll need a combination of Google Analytics and Tag Manager to track and have control of the events you need to analyse, especially as you scale your chatbot and its function becomes more complex.

Third-party chatbot analytics integrations

Just because your chatbot software doesn't come with what you're looking for out-of-the-box doesn't mean you'll need a confident programmer to get it started.

 Zapier or other third-party options can be used to connect apps and automate processes, including between chatbot providers and analytics platforms. Even while Google Analytics integration may seem complex in some cases, it's usually possible to find a simple and effective workaround to save time and resources while getting started with your chatbot.

Instabot's Google Analytics plugin makes connecting to Google Analytics both intuitive and customisable, even for novice chatbot users. For experienced or more technical users Instabot's development tools offer complete customisation options for interactions with external applications.

Setting up Google Analytics with Instabot can be as simple or as complex as you need. Learn more about Instabot or start your free trial today.

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