Optimize tornado funnels

1. Use more specific UTM tagging to determine actual visitor paths and attribution flows.

For example, add retargeting or first touch to your paid Facebook traffic, so you know what part of the campaign is working, or tag your email traffic with additional parameters like content and sales message.

2. Use tagging information to create more nuanced Google Analytics Multi-Channel Funnel reports.

For example, take a generic flow like Social > Email > Conversion and turn it into, Facebook-First touch > Facebook-Retargeted > Email-Content > Email-Sales > Conversion.

3. Segment you users to deal with the additional optimization points that occur in tornado funnels.

For example, beyond creating customer types, consider a mix of technological and behavioral attributes like device, purchase recency, pages visited, day of the week, and traffic source.

4. Identify user behavior with conversion research, by asking yourself How do users activate and engage?, What do all my healthy, long-lasting users have in common?, and What traits define healthy user behavior?

For example, collect information on where your best users come from, the paths they take most often, and any commonalities or traits that are shared among users who are long-term, and have high site involvement.

5. Evaluate your long-lasting users to hypothesize a success metric (SM) that represents healthy user behavior.

For example, Facebook’s 7 friends in 10 days SM is how they are able to optimize for healthy user behavior, while Slack measures success as 2,000 messages.

6. Use cohort analysis and run correlations between business/behavior metrics and your SM, to develop an understanding about what drives the SM.

For example, for a cohort of everyone who’s joined in the last X days, you can analyze how much content they’ve created, whether they’ve downloaded your mobile app, or how many comments they’ve given, compared to your SM.

7. Set up your Google Analytics configuration properly by performing a Google Analytics health check.

Follow a pre-established health check, such as the CXL Google Analytics Audit Checklist or create your own by asking yourself, Am I collecting all of the data I need?, Can I trust the data I’m collecting?, and, Is anything broken or tracking/reporting incorrectly? Why?  Start by comparing your GA setup to the 12 most common GA issues which are: Google Ads account is not connected. Google Ads auto-tagging is not used. time zones do not match. PPC keywords IDs are visible on landing pages. Manual UTM tags are not used. Site search and category search are not enabled. You’re not tracking “mailto,”. The homepage filter is not being used. Log spam is not filtered out. Error pages are not being tracked. Duplicated ecommerce data is not filtered. You have a bounce rate of less than 10%.

8. Analyze your GA to answer 3 benchmark questions: How often are healthy users, at risk users, and users on their way out activating and engaging?

You can then use this information to chart growth and recognize poor user states ahead of time.

9. Create hypotheses and conduct data-based experiments to encourage healthy user behavior, active and engage at risk users, and prevent users from churning.

For example, what can you do to keep healthy users healthy? How can you resurrect churning users?