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Conversions Tracking Best Practices

Conversions Tracking Best Practices

Whether you've opted for a code-free integration (recommended) or you're handling the integration yourself it's important to understand what conversions Parse.ly supports.

#What's the criteria for a supported conversion?

Conversions should be actions that allow you to draw conclusions about the content leading up to the conversion, not just that the conversion happened.

The conversion should be directly tied both to the content on the page where the user converted, as well as all of the content leading up to the moment of conversion.

In other words, consuming content should be a the primary reason for why the visitor was inspired to take action and convert.

#Supported conversions

  • Affiliate link clicks: When someone clicks on a link to an affiliate, such as for a round-up of the best credit cards for travelers.
  • Link clicks to owned sites and subdomains: If different teams own separate parts of your website or another site or subdomain, you can show how your content (e.g. post on a company blog) contributes to their initiatives (e.g. sending traffic to product pages).
  • Newsletter signup: When someone signs up to receive a newsletter.
  • Account creation: When a user creates an account, such as to start a free trial of your product.
  • Lead capture: When someone fills out a form (providing at minimum their email address), such as signing up for a webinar, event, or free ebook.
  • Purchase: When someone buys something in a one-off transaction.
  • Subscription: When someone buys something that creates recurring revenue, such as a monthly subscription box or magazine subscription.

#Unsupported conversions

  • Logging into an account: Reading a page or blog post often has little to do with why a user logs in. Logins can be attributed to browser caches expiring, computer switches, or a user just forgetting to log in again after a while.
  • Tracking interactions with UI elements: We recommend product analytics tools like Mixpanel or Amplitude for testing the effectiveness of UI elements (like recommendation modules or pop-ups or slide-outs).
  • Tracking user progression through a funnel, form, or flow: We recommend product analytics tools like Mixpanel or Amplitude for understanding how users move through a pre-defined funnel (e.g. 80% of users made it to the offer page, 60% to the payments page, 20% to the order confirmed page).
  • Conversions that occur on separate domains: Because Parse.ly only uses first-party cookies, we cannot tie a visitor's activity on one site to their activity on another site. We can track events on both these sites, but we cannot tell you the pages a visitor looked at on Site A before converting on Site B.
  • Conversions that leverage third-party iFrames: We cannot track conversions unless Parse.ly's JavaScript snippet is on the page. In most cases, third-party iFrames prevent us from doing so.

#The "Ideal webpage and form" for conversions

#Forms

For a form submission, our expected standard is a single-paged, self-contained, self-hosted, and self-validating form that has an easily-targettable attribute that we can bind to. Single-paged is sometimes not possible, but in general, we should be able to track a form fill as long as it's part of all the same form, and only a single submission event happens to complete the whole form.

Something along the lines of

<form id="subscription_form">
  <input type="textarea" />
  <input type="submit" value="Click Me!" />
</form>

which is entirely different from what we describe as "floating inputs" which is just input areas that are nested in a div:

<div class="form">
  <input type="text" />
  <button class="submit">Click Me!</button>
</div>

Not following these standards may result in inconsistent data/large discrepancies between conversions and converting visitors, as invalid form submissions will still be counted as a conversion.

The expected standard for buttons/link clicks is less complicated, which is that we only ask for an easily-targettable attribute that is the same for every instance of a button or link that should be tracked as a conversion, something like

<a href="youraffiliate.com" class="affiliate_link">Affiliate Link!</a>
<button class="interest_generated">I'm Interested!</button>

Not following this standard can lead to missing or duplicate conversions.

#Third-party integrations

Existing third-party integrations such as Piano, Digioh, or Shopify may complicate Parse.ly best practices due to iFrames and inaccessible DOM elements. You may be required to do extra work to ensure conversions are tracked properly, and, as stated above, there is the possibility for missing or duplicate conversions.

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