The updated GA4 Google Analytics system has launched, and Etsy lets us connect our shops to it, but how useful is it (really) for an Etsy seller?
If you need to add your Google Analytics GA4 code into your Etsy shop, it’s a simple process, and you’ll be able to see your traffic stats from Etsy in your Google analytics account.
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How to open a Google Analytics account.
To start a Google Analytics account for your business, whether it’s on Etsy or any other platform, go to https://analytics.Google.com on desktop (it’s going to be hard to do this on an app, if there is one) and sign in using the Google account that you want to use for this.
If you have a Gmail email address, or if you’ve signed in to YouTube, that’s your Google account.
You can have multiple Google accounts, though, so make sure that you make a note of which one you used for this or you might not be able to get back into it if you try to use the wrong one.
If you don’t have a Google account, click “create account” at the bottom of the sign-in window and create an account.
Once you do that, follow the prompts to go to Google Analytics.
You’ll see a little welcome screen, and it will prompt you to “start measuring,” then the next screen lets you put the name of your account in.
The next page is where you put the name of your account in and choose the basic settings for your account.
Under that is a section for properties.
Google Analytics Account Vs. Properties.
Think of the Account section as your business, and the properties section as the divisions of your business, or the departments, or sections, or however you want to divide it up.
It’s like your shop is the account, and the shop sections are the properties.
You only really need one account and you can add different “divisions” of your business as different properties.
I didn’t set mine up like that, so I have each different website that I track set up as a different account.
It makes the analytics homepage more cluttered, but it really doesn’t matter as far as how the information is tracked.
I personally prefer to have all of my selling platforms and blogs listed as different accounts since it makes more sense to me visually.
How to add the GA4 code to your Etsy shop.
To add the tracking code to your Etsy shop, go to your Google Analytics account and follow these steps:
Find the account property that you want to track by finding the account in the list of accounts at the top. If you only have one account, that’s what should be showing up there.
Click on the account, then go to the property that you want to track. Click on the property to go to the home page dashboard for that property.
At the bottom of the page you’ll see a gear icon. Click that to open the admin panel.
In the admin panel, click Data Streams. That will open up a window with the name of the property on it. Click the arrow on the right to open up the info for that property.
You’ll see two numbers in this window. You want to click the “copy” icon next to the one that starts with “G” to get the measurement ID.
Go back to your Etsy shop dashboard and choose Settings–Options–Web Analytics.
Paste the code from Google into the Web Property ID box on Etsy. If there’s already a code that starts with UA there, that’s the old Google analytics code, and you can delete that. Make sure to save the changes!
You can go back to the GA4 admin panel to Data Streams to see if it says that data is flowing. If you can see that there’s information coming in, you’re all done.
What are the limitations of GA4 for Etsy shops?
The problem with using Google Analytics with an Etsy shop is that there’s limited information that we can get from Google because we don’t own the Etsy website.
GA4 will tell you about how people came to your shop (sort of) but it won’t give you a tremendous amount of useful information.
You’ll basically be able to see information about the click that brought people to your shop, and you’ll be able to figure out some things about what they did while they were in your shop.
But once they leave your listings and go to the checkout or to another page on Etsy, you can’t track that.
There’s also the fact that a lot of the data from Etsy isn’t being collected at all, because as I look at my Etsy shop stats vs my GA4 stats, it looks like there are a lot of visits missing.
Which one is more accurate? Probably neither, because Etsy doesn’t remove all bot traffic, and GA4 counts “users” in a weird way.
(For information about how Google defines users and other things in the GA4 system, you can use Google’s help section for analytics.)
You also can’t get any revenue or sale information from Etsy through GA4, because all of the sales on Etsy are on Etsy, not in your shop.
When you see the term “conversions” on GA4, that’s not referring to sales, it’s referring to things that you told GA4 to track in your stats.
All you can do is take all the information that you can get, then make educated guesses as far as user traffic is concerned.
However, GA4 can give you some decent insights about traffic and where your listings were found on Etsy by using some of the reports.
The Acquisition Reports section.
The acquisition reports section on GA4 will give you some information about how people came to your Etsy shop. The problem with this report is that because of the way that Etsy and Google interact, a lot of your traffic is going to show up as “Direct,” which probably isn’t accurate.
Direct traffic is defined by Google a someone who typed the URL into the browser and came directly to the page that way, or by bookmarking the page and using that to go there.
It’s highly unlikely that people would be typing the address in or using a bookmarked page to get there, compared to the amount of direct traffic that’s usually listed. It’s possible, but not likely.
And in fact, you can filter the section of traffic that’s marked as “direct” in the traffic acquisition report and add a landing page/query string dimension to see what the URL was for the click that brought the traffic to you.
Some of it will be just the listing URL with no extra information, so that might be direct traffic (or a click on a link, but that should be referral traffic, not direct.) Anyway…
A lot of the URLs, though, will have additional information in the query string that shows where it came from, so you’ll be able to see how the person found you.
The dimension of landing page+query string is REALLY useful for Etsy shops, and it gets more interesting if you realize how it works in the engagement reports also can’t
The Engagement Report section for Etsy shops.
This is the section that I use the most for my Etsy shop, since the traffic reports are limited, and the data isn’t always accurate for the traffic metrics.
The Engagement report has two sections that are fun to poke around in, and the landing page+query string dimension is the key to figuring out a lot of information that you can’t get from Etsy.
You can do this in either the pages and screen or landing pages section. I edited the landing page report to have the landing page+query string as the primary dimension so that it’s there all the time, since it’s really the only thing that I’m interested in.
Once you have that isolated, you can look at the query string to see the name of the listing and the information about whether it was clicked on in an organic search, on a feature on the homepage, in the cart, in someone’s favorites, etc. etc.
The query string is set up by Etsy to track the clicks in different sections, and if you learn to decode the abbreviations, you can see exactly where your listings were when someone clicked on them.
You can also see the search query that was typed into the Etsy search bar, and where the listing was clicked on with that keyword search.
This is pretty good information, because it lets you know which keywords you’re showing up well for in real life, not in theory.
How to use GA4 information for Etsy.
Remember that GA4 is only recording the clicks that bring people to your listings, so being able to see exactly where your listings are showing up and bringing you traffic can help in a few ways.
You can see if your keywords are working.
If your listings are being found in search for organic search you’ll be able to see that, and see which keywords are being used to find which listings.
You’ll also be able to see which keywords are linked to the listings on the first page of search, so you’ll be able to use those keywords in similar listings.
You’ll be able to get new keyword and product ideas.
Sometimes you’ll see keywords that will give you ideas for new products, or for terms to use that you might not have thought of.
If I see something that’s similar to a product that I have but isn’t quite right, it means that the listing was shown for that, so Etsy might not have a lot of choices for that keyword is they’re showing a non-exactly-right listing.
You can take that keyword and make a version of the listing that fits it better, and it might be found in search the next time someone searches for that.
And since Etsy has been showing listings for searches that don’t necessarily match the words in them, you might be able to get ideas about new ways to describe your listings.
You can see if your traffic is lopsided.
If all of your traffic (or a vast majority) is coming from only one place on Etsy, that shows that you might need to pay attention to other ways of being found.
The goal on any marketplace platform is to be found in multiple places, so if all of your traffic is coming from search, you might want to put some time into getting traffic from browse sources like Etsy Explore.
If you’re not getting much traffic from search, your SEO might need some work.
GA4 will give you a general overview of how often you’re found in which place, and you can make decisions from there.
Some of the query string codes deciphered for you.
These are some of the codes that you’ll see in the query strings on GA4, and what they mean on Etsy. This isn’t a comprehensive list, but they’re some of the more common ones. Etsy tends to change these and add and remove codes as they change features on the platform, so this list will change.
|Term In Query String
|Where The Click Came From
|Cart- you may also like
|Home page- suggestions based on your activity (Our Picks For You)
|Home page- recently favorited
|Home page- recently viewed
|Home page- similar to recently favorited
|Bottom of the listing page-similar listings
|Listing page, recently viewed
|Notifications- New from your favorite shops
|From someone’s favorites on their user profile page
|Reviews in your shop
|A click on a listing in your shop
|Shop homepage, featured listings
|A click on organic search results
|Bottom of search page, recently viewed
|Search results- similar to recently viewed
|Home page, recommended from Etsy or similar to your collections
|Category suggestions at the top of the page
GA4 can be useful for some things on Etsy, but the real value is in seeing the actual place that the click came from.
The traffic stats can be pretty questionable, but the landing query string information can give you a lot to work with!
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