What is a funnel?
A conversion is when a user on your site or app does something that you want them to do. This can include completing a form, downloading an app, or some other action. A funnel is a way of visualizing the multiple steps a user takes towards this conversion.
Funnels are useful because they can show you the steps where users tend to exit - or abandon - your form or application. Applying segments based on user types or actions further improves the diagnostic usefulness of funnels.
Funnels are a sequence of steps or stages. These are user actions that you define, most commonly pageviews or other analytics events.
A funnel is said to be open if users can enter at any step or closed if they are required to start with the first step you define. Some funnels automatically fill in steps a user skips in a process called backfilling.
Funnels have a scope. Most of our funnels measure completions by the day (though not a requirement), but we must decide if a funnel must be completed in a single session (session scope), in a direct sequence of hits (hit scope), or merely by the same user at some point during the day (user scope). One of the driving factors in creating funnels in DOMO (as opposed to just in Google Analytics) is the ability to fine-tune the scope and rules of your funnel.
Google Analytics provides a few ways to create funnels:
Funnel Analysis in Explore
Similar to Custom Funnels are the Funnel Analysis in the Explore feature of Google Analytics 360. This is much more robust compared to Custom Funnels in many ways:
You can define up to 10 steps in the funnel.
You can use a segment as a step.
Funnel steps can follow the previous step directly or indirectly.
You can set a time constraint between steps.
You can define optional steps.
You can apply up to 4 segments to the analysis.
You can apply a breakdown dimension.
You can see trends for each funnel step (trended funnels).
The visualization includes a data table, providing greater context and detail.
One downside is that you can only report on user completion rates, not session. Also, while your Funnel Visualization can be shared with other users, it is read-only (even the date range!).
Standard GA Custom Reports allow you to create what are called Custom Funnels. There are a few limitations:
Custom Funnels can only have five steps ("stages")
These steps can each only have 5 rules
Funnels can be open or closed, but only for session-based funnels. User-based funnels must be closed.
Goal Funnel Visualization
If you have goals configured as Destination Goals, where steps are defined as user visits to certain pages or screens, you can view these as a Funnel Visualization in Google Analytics. These funnels are based on your goal configuration. They are open if all steps are optional and closed if you make the first step required. The metric displayed is users though it also includes a session completion rate at the top of the report.
It helpfully shows the pages that users exit to, but - watch out - this can be inaccurate if you're using a Google Analytics view that filters sessions based on page URL.