The GA4 conversions report – Detect your business boosters

The Conversions Report in Google Analytics 4 is both a treasure trove and a cesspool. It can reveal growth opportunities and obstacles. But to get to the conversion data that matters to your business, you need to understand how to use and customize the conversion report in GA4. So, let’s find the hidden gems….

Key Takeaways

  • The Google Analytics 4 Conversions report is populated automatically, provided you track conversions. Properly.
  • The default Conversions report shows basic, but important, business-critical data.
  • GA4 also has a detailed report for every conversion event.
  • If that isn’t enough or too much data, you can create a custom conversion report.

What is the Google Analytics Conversions report?

The Google Analytics Conversions report is a built-in report that contains basic data of your conversion events. It shows, for example, how many times a conversion took place, how many users converted, and, optionally, the total revenue per conversion event. 

google analyitcs conversions report table

“Basic” conversion data doesn’t mean it’s crappy. 

But before I get to that, let’s open the Conversions report in your Google Analytics 4 property.

Where can you find the Google Analytics Conversions report?

To access the GA4 Conversions report, open “Reports”, go to “Engagement” and click “Conversions”.

ga4 conversions report open

If you don’t see the report, someone may have renamed it. Or worse: someone removed it from the navigation menu. 

If that person proudly posted that on Facebook, this would be the only proper reaction:

6 people like this

After all, conversions thrive businesses. 

How to use the default conversions report?

At the top of the GA4 conversions report, you can see a bar chart like this:

Top 5 conversions report ga4 graph

That simple chart immediately answers 3 important questions about your conversions for the selected time period.

1. Did conversions actually happen on your site? 

Don’t panic if you see “no data available” in the GA4 Conversions report.

No data available conversions report ga4

The 5 most common causes for an empty GA4 Conversions report are:

1. Events aren’t marked as conversions yet, or they were, but less than 24 hours ago. That is about the time it takes for GA4 to register conversions in GA4.

2. Not one single conversion took place for the selected period. You can try to change the date range to see if that changes anything.

3. You have opened the wrong GA4 property or account.

4. Your GA tracking code broke.

5. Someone in your team switched the conversions off.

meme google analytics conversions

2. What are the 5 most triggered conversions? 

The bar chart in the GA Conversions report contains the 5 most registered conversions. Nice, but…

Conversions are not a popularity contest

If, for example, page_views are marked as conversion in your GA4 account, it will be the most triggered conversion. That is because you can’t switch tracking page_views off in GA4.

page view tracking ga4 setting

But then again, there is no point in marking page_views as a conversion.

And yet, many businesses choose conversions without putting much thought into it. 

Don't be one of them.

3. On which day did a conversion take place?

The conversion timeline is interesting. Especially if you choose a longer time period. Upward and downward conversion trends can teach you more than sudden peaks and drops.

Conversions per event over time ga4

Things get even more interesting when you compare conversions with a previous period. 

To do so, click on the date selector, choose the duration and click apply.

compare conversions over time ga4

If you hover over a bar in the chart, you can see whether the amount of conversions increased or decreased. 

In the report below, for example, the add_to_cart conversion changed with a whopping 510.8%. 

ga4 performance conversion time comparisson

This is one of those moments to shine as a data analyst or a digital marketer. 

But first, you need to ask questions like these: 

  • Why did the conversions increase or decrease in a given period? 
  • What did you change on your site, your offer, your design, your campaigns? 

And here, we have arrived at the most powerful thing of the GA4 conversions report. 

When the GA4 conversions report raises questions, you know you are onto something important for your business

You can then

  • Dive deeper to detect and fix the things that dropped your conversions.
  • Or you can repeat, for example, a particular campaign to get the same or even more excellent total conversions.

Hang on. 

Let’s rewind to the 500% conversion increase of the add_to_cart event

Is that really an excellent result?

Compared to the previous 28 days, it is mind-blowing. 

But the report contains another conversion that is more important than adding a product to the cart: purchase

If you scroll down, you will see a table that neatly compares the performance of all the conversions that took place on your site, web shop or app.

add to cart versus purchase conversion ga4

Here you can see that the 500% increase of products added to cart, resulted in a 53.35% increase of the Total Revenue.

Not bad. 

But I hope that this example teaches you one thing about GA conversions

Keep your “hooray” or “damn” until you see the full conversion picture

You can get more insights from the default conversion report, but I will show you how to do that in the next paragraphs.

The event conversion report in GA4

To see a detailed report of one specific conversion event, go to the Conversions report and click in the table on a conversion event.

view conversion report specific event ga4

By default, the detailed event conversion report uses the default GA4 channel groups as the primary dimension. 

For example, in the purchase conversion report below, direct traffic was the top source.

purchase conversion detail report ga4 default channels

In the handy table below the bar chart, you can see the details per channel group.

purchase table values channels ga4

The “Event Value” column in the detailed conversion event reports only contains a value if you have assigned it to a conversion. 

Although that may differ from the revenue, it is still a good idea to assign a value to your conversions.

That way, you can, for example, see at a glance, how much email traffic roughly generated compared to organic search traffic, or organic social. 

Primary and secondary dimension in GA4 conversion reports

If you want to dive deeper into the sources that drove converting traffic, you can change the primary dimension, or add a secondary dimension to the table. 

conversion report default channel group ga4

Compare converted users in GA4

The conversion reports are a great place to better understand your users. One way to do this is by comparing “All Users” with another user segment

To do that, click on the Add comparison button on the top of a conversion report.

compare users conversions reports ga4

In the Build Comparison panel, you can change the dimension and select a value. To see, for example, converted users from the United States, your comparison would look like this:

google analytics build comparison conversion report geographical users

You can add up to 5 dimensions to compare. That is, for example, useful to compare your buyers – aka users who triggered the purchase conversion – from two countries. That could look as follows. 

compare purchasers two countries ga4

You can remove comparisons from the conversion report in the Build comparison panel, or by clicking on the X button next to the comparison selection at the top of the report.

remove comparison conversion report ga4

As you click around in the conversions reports, you will for sure find a configuration that is extremely useful to you.

I hear you thinking. 

“I’d better take screenshots or create an SOP to remember which dimensions and metrics I used in my extremely cool conversion report.”

Nope. 

Instead, do the following.

How do I create a conversion report in GA4?

To create a custom conversion report in GA4, follow these steps:

Step 1: Open a Conversions report

ga4 open conversions reports

You can start from the default GA4 Conversions report, or from a detailed conversion event report.

Step 2: Click the edit icon

edit conversions report ga4

Click the pencil icon to customize the report.

Step 3: Change the metrics or dimensions

remove total revenue metrics conversions report ga4

Click on metrics or dimensions. Here, you can, for example, click on the X button to remove the Total revenue or Event Value table from your custom conversion report. Then click Apply.

Step 4: Optional: change the charts

Change chart conversion report ga4

Click on the eye icon to hide or show a chart. To change the layout of the charts of your customized conversion report, click on the arrow next to it. 

Step 5: Optional: change the conversion summary card

customize conversion summary card ga4

You can delete, edit, or create a new summary card. These show up in your overview reports.

Step 6: Save your customized conversion report

save customized conversions report ga4

Click the blue Save button and choose whether you want to override the settings of the conversion report you opened, or save it as a new conversion report.

That’s it.

You can access your report in your report “Library”, or add it to the navigation menu on the left, as with any other customized report in GA4

report library ga custom conversions report

Just make sure you monitor your conversion reports in GA4 regularly. 

And now what?

If you haven’t looked at your Conversions Report in Google Analytics 4 ever, or for a while, now is a great time. The report is really a great starting point to understand what is going wrong or extremely well with the conversions on your site, web shop, or app.

With detailed conversion event reports, you can dive even deeper.

And if that’s not enough, you can create a full custom conversion report. Just follow the steps above.

Since these type of events are so important, you can also add conversion data as a dimension in many other GA4 reports and explorations, like the path exploration report

That was it. 

For now.

On behalf of the Data Driven U team, I sincerely hope that you truly understand what the conversions report in Google Analytics 4 can mean for your business. 

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