How to set up a specific page view as a goal in Sitecore 8.

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So you want to configure a goal in Sitecore that is triggered when a visitor goes to a specific page or number of pages on your website? It feels like this should be the most easy thing to do but bizarrely its not that straight forward or intuitive so I thought I’d write a quick guide to show you how.

As with most things in Sitecore there are a number of ways to do things but this way seemed to be fairly simple to follow. For the purposes of this tutorial I am setting up a goal to measure if a user views our Personalisation and Segmentation page.

First go to the page in Content Editor mode and make a note of the Page ID of the page you are trying to set the goal up for. You’ll find this ID as a long string of numbers and letters at the top of the ‘Quick Info’ section of the page surrounded in parenthesis brackets (see pic below).

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Next go back to the Sitecore dashboard and go in to the Marketing Control Panel.

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On the left you will see ‘Goals’ as part of the content tree. It will probably already have a number of example Goals in there that come as part of Sitecore when installed. It is worth noting that these are not set up or pre-configured though so don’t expect them to be working unless you have gone in to each of them and defined their rules.

You create a new goal by selecting the Goals icon on the left and then clicking the ‘Goal’ button on the right or the ‘Goal’ option on the insert list in the toolbar.

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The next window will ask you to simply give your Goal a name. This is simply for reporting purposes so just call it something meaningful.

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Once you have created a goal, you should probably at least assign a number of points that you are going to attach to this goal. This would be relative to the way you score all your goals and will be the subject of a future article so I won’t cover it in any more detail here. 

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Next scroll down to ‘Rules’ and select the ‘Edit rule’ link.

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To create a goal attached to a page we need to know the page’s ID. Sitecore simply considers a page an ‘item’ so its no good looking for ‘page’ or ‘url’ when trying to find this rule. The one we are looking for is ‘where the item ID compares to value’.

The simplest way to find the appropriate rule is to type ‘id’ in to the search box at the top to filter the long list to just the few that are probably relevant. 

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Click on ‘where the item ID compares to value’ and it should add this as your first rule to the lower half of this panel.

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Select ‘compares to’ and set it to ‘is equal to’ in the pop up window and hit ‘OK’ to close the window.

Then select ‘value’ and in the pop up window paste (or type) the page ID of the page we are measuring (without the parentheses) and hit OK. You should have this Page ID noted (or you copied it) from the first step of this tutorial. If not open a new window in your browser and go back to the content tree to get it.

If you get this right it should now display the page’s name in the rule as per the screen grab below.

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If you wanted this Goal to be triggered when a user viewed a number of different pages, you can add additional rules with different page ID’s by simply selecting the ‘where the item ID compares to value’ rule at the top and it will add it as an additional rule below. Remember to change the ‘and’ to an ‘or’ though.

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If you have a page or a selection of pages that all use a particular page template. You can use this similar method but use the ‘where the item template is specific template’ rule instead. 

Close this panel by hitting OK. Finally Save and Publish you’re your Goal. Depending on Workflow and Permissions for your site you may need to publish the relevant page(s) too.

Another common issue when setting up goals is you may see at the top of the Goal panel that the Goal will not be published as it is ‘not in the final workflow step’. You may need to go to the ‘Review’ tab in the toolbar and ‘Deploy’ this Goal in order for it to be published and start recording.

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I hope you have found this short tutorial useful and it has perhaps set you on the right path with configuring goals.

Goal measurement and configuration is the first step in learning about you users behaviour on the website. Through scoring these goals correctly and feeding them in to an Engagement Plan we use these goals to drive Personalisation of customer journeys.

Whatever your business, be it a regional or global brand, the content you produce plays a vital role in your success. You know that… hence you’re reading this.

A well formulated and executed content strategy not only drives more traffic, at the core, it defines what your business is and helps build a strong connection between you and your audiences.

So let's quickly look at why developing a coherent content strategy is important and how setting clear goals and understanding your audience will elevate your online performance. 

What is a Content Strategy?

It's basic right? Content is at the core of how you define the way your business presents itself and an effective strategy should look to ensure that tone of voice, messaging and the core values are surfaced across all channels, from service or product pages on your website, to blog posts, through social media updates blah blah blah.

But let's keep it simple - your content strategy should be a clear roadmap that connects your marketing activities to your business goals. Align to your customer’s wants and needs and engage them at every interaction point and boom, you're in business. 

Who are my Audience?

You likely start all your projects with this chalked on the wall because your business knows “exactly” who its customers are right? Sounds obvious but we often find its not been done forensically enough (not based on data), is too old (more than 12 months ago - forget it) or its a spin off from some brand work that was legitimately aspirational but doesn’t face the reality of who you your business is actually engaging today.

So start (or circle back) with audience research, building out those personas to understand their ambitions, their lifestyle, their pain points or concerns, and crucially their wants and needs - in your context. 

Do I need to tailor content?

As part of your research find out where your audiences spend their time online and how they interact with content: Some may spend time thoroughly researching a product or service, whereas other audiences may want their content to be quick, snappy or easily digestible in the form of a video, infographic or short blog posts.

 

Ultimately, the key is to produce a strategy that creates the type of content your customers want to see:

  • What are the problems that your product or service will help them solve?

  • Who are they most influenced by?

  • What voices influence their behaviour?

  • What type of content do they consume?

  • Where do they consume content and engage with brands?

Different Content, Different Objectives

 All content is not born equal: When producing your strategy, it is important that the objectives for each individual piece are defined, that these fulfil your marketing objectives and tie to the overarching goals for your business.

There are various content frameworks that exist to aid content development in this way, but one that is popular and effective is Google’s hero, hub and hygiene method: It provides a framework on developing content to achieve different goals and gives guidance on the effort needed to create each type of content.

Hero Content

Hero content is essentially campaign content, it is big splash ideas designed to appeal to a large audience with the aim of telling your brand’s story at scale. 

Ways of measuring hero include the amount of PR mentions or links from authoritative domains plus social interactions and mentions of your brand across all channels. 

Considering the scale of hero campaigns, this content is not regularly produced and is reserved for peak promotional times where it’s important for a business to stand out from their competitors.

Hub Content

Hub content is the stuff that keeps your audience engaged, it expands on the themes of product or service level content, educates users and helps create a connection between themselves and your brand.

Hygiene Content

Hygiene content is the bread and butter of any website, it is the BAU content for products and services, it is SEO focused and targets important keywords at a product, service or guide level.

How do I manage all this?

Content development is only one part of the ongoing work needed when working with an effective content strategy. We call it “feeding the beast” because it really is the fuel in your brand vehicle and once you start you really can’t stop (if it’s delivering results) but that’s where performance measurement comes in.

Your greatest gift in managing the outputs from your hero/hub/hygiene style efforts is to understand If your content is working. To truly deliver results your business must first understand the objectives and goals of each piece of content to effectively measure its success. That as a guiding light from day 1 will let you slow down, speed up, stop or start new content briefs and projects.

Remember - content strategies are not set in stone. They are living breathing things and should adapt and pivot as insights become available and your brand naturally evolves.

If ever you want to chat content and explore new initiatives we’re always here to help.

want to speak to one of our experts?

 
Paul Stephen
Paul Stephen
Co-Founder & Joint CEO
With over 25 years in marketing, Paul is one of the UK's leading experts on digital marketing. He oversees the agency and often lectures and consults within the industry on digital and marketing related subjects and has a particular interest and skills in the travel and tourism sectors.

Paul operates nationally and internationally, helping brands to think outside the traditional horizontal and vertical channels and transform their business with creative multi-channel marketing and digital re-invention.
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