Don’t panic, most people’s Google Analytics are off, slightly.

Google Analytics is intended to provide insight on your website and while it may seem simple, there are a lot of layers and players online, and sometimes, the data can be off, slightly.  Discrepancies between El Toro and Google Analytics are normal because of their different reporting methodologies.  They both will tell similar stories and unless they are drastically different, there is no need for alarm.

Seeing drastic differences between El Toro reporting and Google Analytics?  Here’s what you should do:
- Confirm you have Google Analytics JavaScript on all your landing pages and that the Google Analytics code is firing.
- Audit each of your ad destination URLs to make sure they have properly created UTM tracking codes that will specify the traffic source as El Toro in Google Analytics.
- Destinations URLs do not prompt redirects. Redirects are often set up in a way that can strip the campaign tracking codes Google Analytics needs to attribute the traffic to the marketing source—in this case, El Toro.
- Disable filters set up for your Google Analytics reports that are removing data or editing campaign tracking.

Clicks vs Visits

El Toro tracks clicks; however, Google Analytics tracks visits associated with your advertising.

Google Analytics visits can be one page view, or last hours and contain multiple page views, events, and transactions. Visits expire after 30 minutes of inactivity, and any subsequent activity would be tracked as a separate visit.

Why do I have more clicks than visits?

A single visitor may click your ads several times. When they do this within the same visit, El Toro records multiple clicks while Google Analytics records the multiple page views as only one visit.

If someone clicks on your ad, but doesn’t let the page load, the Google Analytics tracking code will not fire and will not send tracking info to Google. However, El Toro still registers the click.

Slow servers may also contribute to tracking problems and visitors may bounce before the Google Analytics tracking code fires.

Visitors can also set their preferences to opt-out of Google Analytics tracking, but would still be targeted and measured by El Toro.

The reason ad visits may be higher than clicks:

A person may click on your ad, leaves, and then comes back to your website through a bookmark or by typing the URL directly into the browser’s location bar. In this case, the marketing attribution from the first visit is preserved, so the first click results in more than one visit.

Conversion tracking discrepancies

El Toro and Google Analytics use different attribution and tracking methods to associate conversions with your advertising. El Toro attributes a conversion to the last El Toro advertisement click or view.

For most reports within Google Analytics, Google Analytics attributes success to the last marketing visit, regardless of the marketing source. For example, if a visitor clicks an El Toro ad and then subsequently returns to your site via organic search and converts, El Toro will attribute the conversion to the El Toro campaign while Google Analytics will attribute the conversion to organic search.

For most reports, Google Analytics preserves campaign attribution for up to 6 months. El Toro defaults to a 30-day conversion attribution window.

El Toro also tracks view-through conversions, whereas Google Analytics only tracks conversions that occur after a click that subsequently starts a Google Analytics visit.

Remember the most comprehensive way to track conversions is via a match-back analysis.

Assisted conversions vs. last interaction conversions

In most Google Analytics reports, all marketing activity is credited to last interaction conversions. With the multi-channel funnel feature of Google Analytics, you can see assisted conversions in addition to the last interaction.

Navigate to Conversions > Multi-Channel Funnels > Assisted Conversions.

By adding assisted and last interaction conversions, you can see all conversions in which Google Analytics is crediting to your traffic source.

Date/time discrepancy

Default time zones are generally set at the Advertiser level in the El Toro UI. In Advertiser details, there is an option to set a default time zone, and also a checkbox to apply this time zone to all child objects within this Advertiser:  Google Analytics dates and times are localized to the time zone that you set in Google Analytics.