Visits and Clicks Don’t Match in Google Analytics?

Visits in Google Analytics don’t match with clicks from your AdWords Campaigns? In this post I will show you how to fix it.

Problem 1 is focused on a recent problem that occurred with our client where we are doing landing page optimization – A/B testing. The client is using the asynchronous Google Analytics tracking code.

NOTE: prior to any A/B testing we first start analyzing analytics data and check  for integrity and then based on the data we make a decision on what to test. This is why data integrity is very important.

Problem 1: Our client have several AdWords campaigns leading to different landing pages. One campaign is counting visits and clicks well, whilst the other campaign data doesn’t match at all as on the example below.

  • Campaign 1: clicks and visits match – Landing page in this particular case is a home page.
  • Campaign 2: clicks and visits don’t match – Landing page in our client case was a form using Ajax.

Cause 1: In this particular case I discovered that the asynchronous GA tracking code was installed in the footer, below the Ajax form, which had a script error. This script error didn’t allow GA tracking to execute properly, thus such a huge discrepancy between visits and clicks, which made all the data (conversion rate, per visit value, bounce rate etc.) not usable as a consequence.

Cause 2: your GA tracking code isn’t installed properly or is missing on the landing page.

Fix: We moved the GA tracking code (we use the asynchronous tracking code) into the header on all pages. After 2 days we analyzed the data again in GA and found that both campaigns clicks and visits are being tracked OK and that the visits are pretty much aligned with the clicks.

Problem 2: You run several AdWords campaigns and clicks and visits in all of them are completely out.

Possible Causes:

  • your GA tracking code isn’t installed properly or is missing. Check using SiteScan if your analytics code is installed properly on every page. NOTE: at the time of writing SiteScan wasn’t able to detect the new asynchronous tracking code. According to a SiteScan representative their service should be updated within 2 weeks.
  • check that your AdWords account is linked to your GA account. Also check that the correct accounts are linked as it is not uncommon to see an old AdWords or GA account from a previous campaign being used accidentally. If this is the case, you need to first unlink the accounts before re-attempting to link up the correct accounts.
  • Check that you have cost data applied to the troubled profile.
  • Check that auto-tagging is enabled in your AdWords account.
Jan Petrovic
I have 9 Years of Tremendous Experience as web analyst and Senior Conversion Specialist. I have worked on optimisation project for the second-largest store retailer in the USA (the company is also a component of the S&P 500 Index), as well as for a well-known USA fashion retailer with over 380 stores nationwide. Over the course of my career I have achieved many INSANE improvements on our client’s websites, sometimes by applying best practices, another time from findings I made during conversion audits and sometimes thinking out of the box. For one of them I have even received an award in 2012 from WhichTestOne, where after testing different emails and parts of email message we increased revenue by 303.08%. What might also interest you is the fact that my average conversion improvement is 19% and my success rate is 70%. Basically, I’m VERY GOOD at what I do thanks to my Can Do Attitude to find solutions to given problems & Experience in this field.
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