How to create an event tracking plan

When launching new products, and campaigns, the most successful teams plan out their strategy, and analytics by implementing a data tracking or tracking plan.

What is a tracking plan?

Usually, a tracking plan is a document or spreadsheet used across your team members to standardize how it tracks data. It is often serving as a project management tool and a central reference document, aligning multiple team members. It should be treated as an active document that is continuously updated with any implementation changes or notes that can be referenced by your team. A tracking plan should be the source of truth for questions about your Intempt implementation.

What does a good tracking plan look like?

For the tracking plan to be able to act as a central reference point for setting up your project, it needs to answer and justify the following statements:

  • What data you are tracking?
  • Where you are tracking that data?
  • Why the data selected being tracked?
  • By answering the aforementioned questions, you can correctly identify your core use cases, important customers, and commodities. Furthermore, with a great tracking plan, your stakeholders will constantly and efficiently monitor your project progress.

What should be tracked?

In the tracking plan, your core focus is your users. If we look at this from another angle, the actions performed by your users, in other words - events. Thus, by listing all of your events, you will be able to map the most important steps of the customer journey, from free trial sign-up to recurring subscriptions to churn. Note that your tracking plan is not limited and can grow constantly as your team and product grow. As time passes, you will understand which events are crucial in achieving your core use cases.

How to create a tracking plan in 3 steps

Building an efficient and easy-to-understand tracking plan to monitor your customers is at the root of customer analysis. To create a tracking plan, you simply need to follow these 3 steps:

  • Identify key use cases. Essentially, what you and your team are trying to achieve.
  • Identify user actions to track. Brake down the use case into actionable items. For example, you want to improve your customer's journey from start, that is logging in to finish, checking out and how can you improve that process.
  • Build a data tracking model. After the use case has been defined, a clear goal has been set and broken down into multiple action items, you can proceed to convert your draft plan into a professional document.
    Let's have a look at each step in a more detailed view.

Step 1: Identify key use cases

The first step in building an efficient and easy-to-understand tracking plan is to define your business objectives and core use cases. You need to think about your company's overall goals as well as the key metrics and KPIs you are trying to analyze in the short or long run. Some of the examples could be:

  • Increase your total revenue figure
  • Identify your most efficient marketing channels
  • Improve certain item sales figure
  • Understand your customer friction or drop-off points in your marketing funnel

Once the business objectives have been identified, you need to question them on how they work, what value they bring, and what the potential customer should do or not. For example, you are interested in a use case to increase your customer engagement through a mobile app. Thus, you ask yourself:

  • What screens do new users view first on the app?
  • Does the app provide a walkthrough guide?
  • Do customers shopping in the app receive special discounts?
  • After the use case and the assigned questions have been brought up, you can proceed to identify the necessary data points to find the answers you need.

Step 2: Identify user actions to track

You want to begin thinking about the different steps your customer takes in a journey and how that customer may go through them. Let's say we want to know what product generates the most revenue.

From the user flow, we have determined that the most important metric we want to track is the purchase amount of the product of interest.

Mapping out the process is an important step as you can visualize what your customer must do from start to finish. Now that we have determined the flow, we can clearly define each step. Let's say, we want to list the actions to take for a customer to be in the Category page step:

  • Visit website: the customer has visited your webshop
  • Intro landing page: if there is a first-time user, one will be seeing an intro to the website
  • Click a button: user has clicked a button to see all products available
  • Apply product filter: user has applied a product filter to see relevant product categories

After listing the events for each step in the flow, you can now think about more specific aspects of them. For instance, what values should the events have, and what properties to assign to them. Some of the event properties, such as date and time can be applied to all events.

Step 3: Build your data tracking model

As a final step, you need to create a single repository of all the steps to do to test your use case and find the correct answer - for that, you need to set Sources and event tracking there.

Data tracking plan examples

Because tracking plans can take some time to understand and create, we suggest you have a deeper look into our developed sample tracking plans before digging deeper into more complicated tracking: