20 Reasons Google Analytics Custom Variables are Retails Best Friend

I’m glad I was finally able to discuss about the most requested topic for Milk Blog: Google Analytics and the impact it can bring to business owners who have a website. I mentioned how it has helped the effectiveness of email campaigns, blogs, social, ads, website etc. Google Analytics is really an untouched GOLDMINE!

But guess what? The fun’s not done yet! We’re going the extra mile to teach you 20 things that you can track using Google Analytics Custom Variables.

Custom Variables can be your best friend in many ways and it’s all about segmentation… Sure Google Analytics provides several out of the box ways to segment your visitors into groups. For example, it is possible to segment by GEO location, Browser, Operating System, Traffic Source, Visitor Type (New vs. Returning), Content Viewed, Goal Completion, and the list goes on…

But beyond a shadow of a doubt, the most powerful segmentation feature on Google Analytics is the Custom Variable.

Custom Variable enables us to understand who are our customers and how different groups of people behave on the website; this information is extremely valuable in order to provide a richer and more relevant experience to customers. The result is a happier customer, a more profitable website.

Things you can track for Your e-Commerce Site

Track The Visitor ID
Google Analytics doesn’t hold any personally identifiable information like email addresses etc… But it’s you can hold a random visitor id’s that you can then compare with your own database outside of GA. Tracking your visitors id is a useful way to track the same visitor even when they’re not logged into your site. This is particularly useful for e-commerce sites that have guest checkout, or sites that sell small ticket items which may not require a user to login.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,1,’UserID’,’1234567890′,1]);

Track Loyal Customers
Similar to tracking blog’s returning commenters, you can track Loyal Customers using Google Analytics Custom Variables. You can understand those visitors with no purchase Vs those who have. This way, it will be easier for you to give rewards or decipher which products you should focus on more in the future.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,2,’Purchases’,’8′,1])

Track Products viewed by customer
Do you agree that if a customer searches and visits a product, it means that they are likely interested to buy it? But what if they don’t spend cash right there and then?

Credit: eBay.com.au

With Google Analytics Custom Variables, you can track the products viewed by a customer, even those they did not purchase. This makes it easier to focus your campaign to the right people.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,3,’View Product’,ProductCode123,2]);

Track the Number of Items in a Shopping Cart
Adding to the products they viewed, others also put items in their shopping cart then later remove them for various reasons. You can track the number of items they have in a shopping cart through Google Analytics Custom Variables so you know how much they are able to spend and which products they are abandoning. This is the perfect way to know what items to pitch to your customers!

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,4,’Cart Items’,’4′,2]);

Track Customer’s Dollar Amount Spending
Similar to Loyal Customers, only this time, you don’t track how many times they have purchased from you… you can track the total amount of money they have spent in your business.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,5,’Ongoing Value’,10000,1]);

Things you can track for Your Blog:

Track Your Authors
You may check the performance of the posts made by a particular author in your blog using a Google Analytics custom variable.


Especially for those websites that accept guest bloggers, constantly seeing if the content posted on your site is valuable or not is very important to make sure that the quality is adhered and maintained.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,1,’Author’,’Alita Harvey-Rodriguez’,3]);

Track The Categories
Categories are used to group related articles efficiently. With Google Analytics Custom Variables, you will be able to identify which category is most read and valuable to your readers. This way, you can continue to create content based on that category.


Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,2,’Category’,’Digital Marketing’,3]);

Track Your Tags
Aside from categories, it is advisable to ad “tags” to your posts. These are words that best summarises your content. These tags are very useful when a new visitor does a search within your site.


You can check which tags are most searched by your readers using Google Analytics Custom Variables.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,3,’Tag’,’Facebook Marketing’,3]);

Track Who Comments

Some commenters of your site are returning visitors, while others are new. With Google Analytics Custom Variables, you can check the behaviours of your commenters; see what kind of content entices them to keep coming back.


Track visitors who shared your content
Aside from checking who are those who always go back to your site to comment, it may be useful to also take note those who shares your content frequently. This way, you can produce more content related to the things your readers feel are “share-worthy”.

_gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,5,’Social Sharer’,’Yes’,1]);
_gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,5,’Social Sharer’,’No’,1]);

Things you can track for Lead Generation Sites / Pages

Track Leads / Non-leads
With Google Analytics Custom Variables, you are able to track who signs up to your forms. But most importantly, you can track what kind of people checks your site, reads your content, but decides NOT to sign up. Especially if these people are your target market, you can check why they aren’t “hooked” to your offer.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,1,’Lead’,’Yes’,1]);

Track Newsletter Subscriber
You may also track those who signed up to your newsletter. What’s their age range, where do they come from? It will help you understand which segment of viewers get enticed to sign up. These are very valuable questions which can be answered by Google Analytics Custom Variables.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,2,’Newsletter subscriber’,’Yes’,1]);

Track RSS Results

Is your RSS Sign up form still working? Same as the newsletter subscriber, you can also track your RSS Sign Up Entries using Google Analytics Custom Variables.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,3,’RSS subscriber’,’Yes’,1]);

Track Demographic
Probably one of the best uses of Google Analytics Custom Variables is to see how your customers with different demographic react… Are your Male’s who are 30 years old leads more engaged? Do the people from Victoria share your content more than those in your city?


Track Member Type
Milk it Digital Mentoring Community has different types of member. This is why Google Analytics Custom Variable is so useful when we try to observe how the different members react to our offers, updates.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,1,’Member Type’,Full Cream,1]);

Track Help / FAQ Page Visit & Customer Service
It’s advisable to have a “Help” section or a FAQs page because you shouldn’t make your customers wait to get answers about your business if you don’t have live chat. With the Google Analytics Custom Variables, you can track the amount of people who check the help/FAQ page and see if they’re satisfied with the answers they got or if they proceed to the contact form to ask more.

_gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,2,’Session Articles’,’6′,2]);
_gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,4,’Customer service’,’contacted’,2]);

Track Complaints
From those people who sent a message to your customer service, how many and who sent complaints? What were their concerns about? These are some of the services you can improve if you use Google Analytics Custom Variables.

Code: _gaq.push([‘_setCustomVar’,5,’Complaint’,’yes’,2]);

Custom Variables are one of my favorite tools in Google Analytics! They provide so many ways to help me get the data I need to acquire the right leads, nurture them into converting into a profitable customer by providing valuable content… then continuously give the best promotions and offers so I retain them and have them buy again and again.

Do you find Custom Variables interesting? Will you use it for your campaign? Which of these uses will best help you? Let us know in the comments below!

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top