Google Analytics Supported Widgets

We are continuing to push the envelope and improve our support for Analytics, making it easier for races to use cross-domain tracking by adding widgets with Google Analytics supported configuration. Cross-domain tracking allows races to report website traffic information (including e-commerce data) to their Google Analytics accounts with accurate attribution of the traffic sources.

We previously released a series of blog posts on our Google Analytics Integration highlighting the features of the integration and covering some uses for data gathered. In Part 3 of the blog series, we detailed how to configure our widgets to support Google Analytics and cross-domain tracking when added onto a race’s website. To remove the need to manually edit widget code for cross-domain reporting with widgets, the Google Analytics supported widget configuration can now be found on the main widget setup pages within the RunSignUp Dashboard.

If a race has supplied us with their Google Analytics account information, we automatically include the Google Analytics supported widget setup right on the current widget setup pages.

If your race is currently using Google Analytics but does not make use of RunSignUp widgets you can still support cross-domain tacking within RunSignUp by following the steps listed in Part 2 of the blog series. Once these options are enabled your RunSignUp and Google Analytics integration will accurately report your traffic information and traffic sources.

Why is this important?

The big question is why is it important that we support (and you setup) cross-domain tracking with Google Analytics. To illustrate the importance, we will walk through an example of how the data from a transaction looks when cross-domain tracking is supported, and what the data looks like when it is not supported.

A Participant’s Path

A previous participant receives a promotional email informing them that the price for the event is about to go up. The participant clicks on a link in the email that sends them to the race’s website. The runner then registers for the race using a widget hosted on the race’s website.

Without Cross-Domain Tracking SupportUsing the above participant’s path, if cross-domain tracking is not supported the transaction within Google Analytics will be sourced to the race’s website. This provides a marketer or analyst with very little information about the transaction as they are unable to determine how the visitor reached the race website to begin with. This type of attribution results in assigning a very high percentage of traffic to the race’s website, resulting in a lot of unusable data.

With Cross-Domain Tracking SupportWith cross-domain tracking support, when the same visitor reaches the page with the RunSignUp widget installed the race website will inform RunSignUp how the participant reached the race website, in this case through a promotional email. Then, when the participant completes their registration, RunSignUp is able to report to Google Analytics that the visitor came from the promotional price email. This gives marketers the information they need to understand the performance of their advertisements and promotions and allows them to make informed decisions.

RunSignUp and Google Analytics Best Practice

To make sure you are getting the most out of your RunSignUp and Google Analytics information, be sure to enable the e-commerce reporting within your Google Analytics account. RunSignUp automatically reports all transactions to determine which traffic sources are generating the most value for your event; however, you must have the e-commerce reporting enabled in your Google Analytics profile to indicate that it should be “listening” for that data.

To enable e-commerce reporting, follow the steps outlined in this Google Analytics support document. Once you have cross-domain tracking supported and you have enabled e-commerce transactions, it’s time to start analyzing!

What’s Coming!

We are continuing to work on our own internal analytics system designed specifically for races and events. The RunSignUp system will provide much of the information currently available through Google Analytics directly within RunSignUp; it will also supply additional information specific to races and events. RunSignUp’s system already automatically tags all outbound emails with tracking capabilities and reports on the effectiveness of both emails generated by race directors, and automated emails activated to send from the RunSignUp system. RunSignUp will continue to expand these capabilities breaking down traffic information from other websites, referral reward programs, and attributing transaction and donation dollars to their respective sources.

RunSignUp Quick Hits…Features Even Advanced Users May Missed

Over the next few days, we’ll be sharing a host of resources from our 3rd annual RunSignUp Symposium. First up: some blog links to features you may have missed. Even our most advanced users often have a hard time keeping up with all our updates (2,000+ in 2015); RunSignUp Sales Lead Bryan Jenkins picked a few to highlight:

email-imageSearch Box Bib/Email
Need to find a participant quickly? Instead of navigating to the participant report first,
there is a search bar at the top of each page of your Dashboard.

Automated Emails
We have a few (and soon will have more) automated emails for things like incomplete registrations & RaceJoy. Turn these on to cut down on manual notifications sent to runners.

Email Reporting
Track opens, bounces, clicks, spam reports, etc. on emails that you send out from the system.

Shared Reports
Share limited participant data with other users, securely.

Custom Reports
Pick and choose the information that you want to see on a participant report, and filter out all other data.

Financial Report
You probably know that financial reports exist, but do you understand what each field means, or that you can download a detailed participant report?

Giveaway Inventory
In addition to having the ability to track the inventory on your giveaways, we have a giveaway projection tool that will help you plan how many giveaways to order based on previous orders.

Loyalty Program
Reward runners from previous years, volunteers, or any other specific group by offering early registration…matched directly on personal info, so there’s no password to be shared around.

Reserved Entries
Allow runners to register for an event that is (technically) full, without manual processing of payment and data import.

google-analyticsGoogle Analytics
View demographic information on the visitors to your site…and monitor the effectiveness of your marketing with analytic web data on your dashboard.

Custom Content Display, Menu, and Pages
Our race websites have a lot of flexibility: you can pick what items are on the main menu, which ones are sub-menu items, and the order that it all shows up.

Giveaway Reports
View your Giveaway Report by males and females.

Repeat Participant Reports
See how many (and who) of your runners from previous years have registered again…and see who has not so you can target them directly.

Misc Settings
Looking for something that doesn’t seem to fit anywhere else on the dashboard? It’s probably in Misc Settings; for example, for events that are not actually races (like a Symposium!) you can customize the wording used throughout your site.

Quick Multi-Race Access/Editing
If you have multiple races, sometimes you want to switch between races on a single page. Perhaps you are adding coupon codes across multiple races and want to do that on all 4 of your races.

Bryan Jenkins

RunSignUp Registration-Web Tracking Update

RunSignUp has always strived to provide races using any web tracking system with the most accurate conversion data possible, supporting over a dozen different types of conversion codes and providing extensive Google Analytics support. With a recent update, RunSignUp has taken another step forward in its web tracking capabilities, providing even more information to web tracking systems and creating additional opportunities for analysis and optimization.

Prior to this release, RunSignUp’s registration process displayed the same URL throughout registration, regardless of what page the registrant was on, as shown in this example:


From a web tracking perspective, the difficulty with this type of URL is that web-reporting tools that rely on page-views cannot tell the difference between the pages of the registration process, and the confirmation page. This meant that you could not rely on only URL filters to track conversions. To address this problem (and allow web marketers to analyze their registration funnel), we have added additional information to the URL during the registration process.

Race registrations now include a new parameter “track” that can be used by web tracking programs to determine the exact page of the registration process that the user is currently on, as shown:


In this example, the participant is currently on the “Custom Questions” step of the registration process. Since each step of the registration process now contains an indicator of the page the user is on, you can analyze your registration path. Race directors that are using RunSignUp and Google Analytics can now create goal funnels tracking their registration path; this can be used to gain more insight into your registration process (as compared to just tracking conversions).

Facebook Pixel Conversion Tracking Example

To illustrate how you can setup conversion tracking for a race with only a URL filter, we will walk you through the setup of a Facebook Pixel Custom Conversion. First, you’ll want to locate your raceID, which can be found in the URL of your race’s Sign Up page, as shown:


Once you have determined your raceID, you are ready to setup a URL conversion in Facebook. Navigate to your Facebook Ads account, and click on the option to “Create Conversion”:


When prompted, select the option to Track Custom Conversions:


On the conversion setup page, select the following rules:


You will select the “URL Contains” rule option, and then insert the URL of your race’s confirmation page. This URL should follow the format of:


Replace the “XXX” portion of the text with your raceID.

You can set the category as a “Purchase”, since runners are purchasing an entry into your race or making another type of monetary transaction (such as a store purchase or donation). This will give Facebook additional information about the action you are trying to optimize with your Facebook ads.

On the next page, you will be prompted to name your custom conversions, which should be a descriptive name allowing you to know which race you are tracking conversions on. You can also provide additional information, such as a description of the conversion, and a conversion value representing the value of a conversion; these are not required to track the number of conversions.


Finally, on the right side of your dashboard you will see a list of the custom conversions you have created. Select the link to “See All” custom conversions and you will see a list of the custom conversions you have created. This will allow you to use the same ad account to track purchases for multiple races without setting up a separate ad account for each race.

Keep checking our blog for the latest updates on web tracking and other marketing features!

RunSignUp and Google Analytics (Part Three)

At this point, you’re almost a Google Analytics and RunSignUp expert. You’ve read about the basics of RunSignUp and Google Analytics, and you’ve configured your website and RunSignUp to support cross domain tracking. However, rather than linking to RunSignUp for registration, you are taking advantage of the RunSignUp widgets, and are hosing registration directly on your own website. Since these aren’t links to RunSignUp, configuring your website and RunSignUp as described in the previous articles doesn’t quite do the trick, as there is one more step to complete cross-domain tracking support for RunSignUp widgets. Don’t worry though; we’ve got you covered here too!

There are two separate walk-throughs on installing RunSignUp Google Analytics depending on the type of Google Analytics you have installed on your website. Below are the updates needed to install widgets that support cross-domain tracking on both Asynchronous and Universal Google Analytics. This installation is a tad more technical, so you’ll want to have your Webmaster nearby!

Both the Asynchronous and Universal Widget installations follow the same general principles. First the Google Analytics code is loaded, so it’s functions are available to the RunSignUp widgets. Second, a placeholder is installed in the location that the widget should be placed. Third, the RunSignUp JavaScript runs building the widget and placing it in the correct location. An important note of this part of the script is it will contain a “try / catch” so just in case there is a problem with Google Analytics the widget will continue to load correctly.

Example Universal Google Analytics Widget Installation

Universal Analytics Screenshot


So what does this all mean?!  Well, the code is broken into three different sections. First is the main Google Analytics script, this should already be installed on your website if you’ve already setup Universal Google Analytics. The important thing to note about this first section of Google Analytics code, is that it needs to be running before the RunSignUp widget since the widget will rely upon Google Analytics functions.

The second piece of this code is the Widget Placeholder. This part of the code should be installed on your website exactly where you want the widget to appear. There is no customization needed in this second piece of code, it is simply holding a location on the website for the widget to appear once it has been loaded and configured. Without this placeholder, the RunSignUp widget would automatically build at the bottom of the page, once the rest of the site’s content has loaded.

The third piece of this code is the part that actually builds the RunSignUp widget, and then tells the placeholder it is ready to load. There are a couple of important customizations that must be made when installing your specific widget based on this code. First, you’ll need to switch the “widgetId” parameter in both locations it is listed replacing the placeholder with your specific widget ID. Second, if you have an affiliate code, you will want to replace affiliate token placeholder with your token. If you do not have an affiliate code, simply delete the placeholder (including the “&” symbol prior to the parameter). Once you’ve switched the placeholders with your IDs, you should be all set!

Example Asynchronous Google Analytics Widget Installation


As with the Universal Analytics installation, this code is segmented into three areas. The first section of the code is the Google Analytics script, which should already be installed on the site from the previous setup steps. The important thing to note here is that the Asynchronous Google Analytics must be loaded onto the site prior to executing the RunSignUp widget.

The second section of code here is a simple placeholder. This should be placed on the website exactly where you want the RunSignUp widget to load. If you don’t include this placeholder, then the RunSignUp widget will load at the bottom of the page after the rest of the website’s content.

The third and final part of the script is the process that builds the RunSignUp widget, and then tells the system that it is ready, and loads the widget into the placeholder. There are two important parameters that should be updated in this third part of the script, the “widgetId” placeholder and the “aflt_token” if you have one. If you do not have an aflt_token, then you can remove this parameter from the widget script. Also be sure to update the placeholders in both the “try” and “catch” section of the code, to make sure even if there is a problem with Google Analytics, your widget loads correctly.

Installation Complete!

If you’ve followed all of the steps from Part One, Part Two and this, the last installment of the RunSignUp and Google Analytics series you’re RunSignUp and Google Analytics should be fully configured. Your Google Analytics will now support cross-domain tracking, and will include full E-commerce information including the number of transactions, dollar amounts, and correct attribution of the transactions to their original sources. As always though, be sure to run a couple of tests to make sure that the widget was installed correctly, and that Google Analytics is correctly processing information prior to launching your major media campaigns.

RunSignUp and Google Analytics (Part Two)

So you’ve read about RunSignUp and Google Analytics and you realize how helpful it can be to track the web traffic related to your event. You’ve added your Google Analytics information to your RunSignUp race but you’ve got your own race website and are either linking to RunSignUp for registration, or are using the RunSignUp widgets on your website and you’re concerned about cross-domain tracking. Don’t worry; RunSignUp has worked out the process for all of the common implementations of Google Analytics and RunSignUp registration. The only thing you’ll need to know to get started, is which version of Google Analytics your website is currently running.

Asynchronous or Universal Google Analytics?

The easiest way to figure out which type of Google Analytics you have implemented is to view the “source” of your website. Once you’ve selected “View Source” for one of the pages on your site, you’ll look for the Google Analytics tags. If you have a JavaScript snippet containing several instances of “_gaq” then you are running the asynchronous version. If you instead see several instances of “ga(”, then you are running the Universal Analytics. Note: While it is not required to update to Universal Analytics, it is recommended that if you are currently using Asynchronous that you look into upgrading to Universal Analytics. If you use a content management system such as WordPress, check to see if it supports any Google Analytics plugins to make installation easier.  You can find the full Google Analytics guide to locating your trackingID and code snippet located here.

Once you know what type of Google Analytics you are running on your website, you’ll need to update the site-wide code to support cross-domain tracking. The exact update you’ll need to make will depend on if you are running the Asynchronous or Universal version of Google Analytics.

Updating Universal Google Analytics

If you are using the Universal Version of Google Analytics, you will want to make the updates shown below in red being sure to replace ‘’ with ‘’. This will tell your Google Analytics setup that when linking to RunSignUp, it should automatically include the additional information needed to support cross-domain tracking. If your Google Analytics is already configured for cross-domain tracking, simply add RunSignUp to the list of supported domains.


To view the full reference on updating Universal Analytics to support cross-domain tracking see the Google Support Guide located here.

Updating Asynchronous Google Analytics

If you are using the Asynchronous version of Google Analytics and have chosen not to upgrade to the universal version, you will want to make the updates shown below in red.


If you are using an unmodified version of the Asynchronous Google Analytics, then you will be adding two lines of code to this snippet, the setDomainName, and the setAllowLinker. Be sure to set the domain name listed to be your website’s domain. If you’ve already setup your Google Analytics to support cross-domain tracking for another website, you will not need to make any changes to your site-wide script.

To view the full guide on updating a website to support cross-domain tracking, you can view the Google support document located here.

Updating Links to RunSignUp

If you are using the Universal version of Google Analytics, you’re already done! When using the Universal version of Google Analytics, the code automatically detects all links to the supported domain and adds the Google Analytics information to all links. If you are using the Asynchronous version of Google Analytics, you must tag all links to RunSignUp to add the information needed to support cross-domain tracking. In order to do this, you must add the information shown below in red to any links pointing to RunSignUp…


Be sure to replace the example url listed above with the page you are linking to on RunSignUp. This update will let your website know that whenever someone clicks on the link, that Google Analytics should get the extra information needed for cross-domain tracking and include it on the link to RunSignUp.

Updating RunSignUp Widgets… Next Week!

Using RunSignUp’s widgets on your website? Stay tuned for the next installment on RunSignUp and Google Analytics coming next week. It will walk you through the process of how to support cross-domain tracking when including widgets directly on your website. It will include the code necessary to support the tracking, and a line-by-line breakdown of the update.

RunSignUp and Google Analytics (Part Three)