Why Cross-Domain Tracking is Essential When Choosing a Third Party Service Provider

Posted on March 15, 2018 Mary Merritt

If you're evaluating customer-facing software to integrate with your website, you are probably focused on feature sets, design, usability, and how well each solution serves customers and aligns with your business needs. One thing you may overlook in your analysis is whether the new solution will be trackable in Google Analytics (or other metrics platforms). In digital marketing, measuring touchpoints and conversions accurately is the foundation to evaluating campaign performance, and you will want to make sure all integrated software is measurable.

For example, your HR department may use software to list jobs, collect applications, and organize their hiring process. If you plan to integrate a job application form into your website, you will probably want to track form submissions as a goal, especially if you spend marketing dollars to find job candidates. Does your HR software support a trackable integration with your website?

Another example is software found in the adventure tour and hospitality space. Companies that offer the ability for guests to book rooms, trips, excursions, etc. through their websites often rely on a 3rd party software solution to list inventory, manage bookings, and offer online reservations. If your website's main goal is to sell online bookings, it is critical that your booking software can integrate with your analytics tracking.

Even if the user leaves your website to submit a form or complete a purchase (which is common with a lot of software integrations), you may be able to utilize cross-domain tracking to track the user’s complete session from start to finish. If you want actionable and granular data about the performance of your marketing campaigns, you can’t rely on the standard reporting that comes with your 3rd-party software. Complete end to end tracking is important because that is the only way you can accurately measure which campaigns are successful, and which need improvement.

It may seem like an unimportant detail, but make sure to ask before adopting any important web software: will this be trackable as a goal in my web metrics? This is a technical question that the front-line sales staff may not be able to answer accurately, but it is critical if you are committed to data-driven marketing.

Need help evaluating software for your website? Let us know how we can help!