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YHA Google Analytics Case Study



Enhanced Google Analytics enables YHA to increase accuracy of marketing data


In Marketing We Trust reconfigured YHA’s Google Analytics data to amplify visibility of user behaviour on their network and website


reduction in discrepancy between Google Analytics and client system


of traffic was previously unidentified – an increase in accuracy for key pages

enhanced performance tracking

for conversions and transactions


YHA Australia forms part of Hostelling International, one of the world’s largest low-cost accommodation networks. They have over 3000 hostels in more than 70 countries. The organisation is a membership-based association striving to inspire personal growth and create authentic local experiences in a sustainable manner.

Large numbers of guests stay in YHA accommodations each year, whilst many other travelers and clients visit their facilities to access Wi-fi. All users connecting to the internet from within YHA properties are automatically redirected to the client’s website as soon as they get online. Even though this traffic is relevant, it was overflowing into wider marketing data and reducing visibility on performance.







Reclassify internal Wi-fi traffic as separate from other website visits to eliminate discrepancies between Google Analytics and client’s system sales data

Effective data tracking is the key to enhancing our clients’ marketing activities. Therefore, a better understanding of website visitor behaviour was required.

Put effective data tracking in place to leverage the understanding of visitor behaviour

Internal Wi-fi traffic from website users physically present at YHA properties was intermixed with crucial marketing data for key pages on site.

This meant the client was working with an inaccurate analytics setup. Hence, resulting in a lack of visibility on bookings and user behaviour.

In Marketing We Trust’s objective was clear, we needed to reduce the discrepancy between analytics data and the client’s system sales data. In doing so, we would enhance the client’s digital reporting and decision-making.


Restructuring work carried out in Google Tag Manager and updated e-commerce implementation would enhance conversion and transaction monitoring

A better understanding of visitor behaviour produced an efficient inbound marketing strategy and relevant redesigns.

In Marketing We Trust’s knowledge of Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager quickly resolved a historical issue for YHA

In Marketing We Trust needed to reduce the discrepancies between the Google Analytics data and YHA’s own system sales data. We reconfigured the GTM container for the client with several fundamental triggers and updated the Google Analytics dashboard.

A custom channel grouping was created in order to separate the internal Wi-fi traffic from other sources. As a result, the behaviour and value of other audience segments could be analysed properly.

How we got there

An essential element in creating a strategy based on accurate data for our client is a thorough analytics audit. This was the first step in this project. Our audits comprise a 60-point checklist to ensure data quality and integrity.

Our initial review of YHA’s Google Analytics account during the discovery phase was highly insightful. We were able to identify the issue of blurred analytics figures caused by the internal Wi-fi traffic. Afterwhich, we figured out a plan for cleansing the data.

The first order of business was to update to Google Tag Manager. In Marketing We Trust updated YHA’s existing tags and variables, removing obsolete elements. Our experienced analytics team ensured the information needed by Google Tag Manager was provided using the correct Datalayer structure.

Subsequently, we implemented enhanced e-commerce events for user behaviour, including checkout access and transactions. We also added new custom dimensions for Product Type, Type of Booking, Size of Group, and Event ID.

Before the new tracking system was deployed, we tested, monitored, and adjusted settings while both tracking systems were live. It was verified later on that the updates were providing a true picture of visitor behaviour.


13.4% of YHA’s overall traffic is now classified in a dedicated channel marked as ‘Internal Wi-fi’, providing cleaner data for the client’s key metrics

Following the updates In Marketing We Trust have made for YHA 13.4% of their overall traffic is now segmented into the dedicated ‘Internal Wi-fi’ channel. That traffic no longer impacts metrics such as the number of sessions, bounce rate, or conversion rate.

The difference in bookings between Google Analytics and the client’s internal system has been reduced by 38%.

Increase in Google Analytics Accuracy





reduction in discrepancy between Google Analytics and client system


of traffic was previously unidentified – an increase in accuracy for key pages

enhanced performance tracking

for conversions and transactions

YHA can now track and monitor performance for all kinds of conversions and transactions more accurately

Assessing the value of traffic from specific sources is now much clearer for YHA. For example with Direct traffic, once the updates were made, there were significant variations to the number of sessions, bounce rate, and conversion rate from that source. This means that YHA can now assign value more accurately.

Similarly, with Organic Search traffic, the performance is markedly different from what YHA was previously observing. Therefore, evaluating the success of efforts to drive more direct search engine visits and analysis of user behaviour has been enhanced.

38% increase in analytics accuracy for YHA
38% increase in analytics accuracy for YHA

Thanks to enhanced e-commerce and custom analytics dimensions configured by In Marketing We Trust, YHA can now accurately identify customers who are falling out of the funnel at various stages. For example, drop off due to availability, or those abandoning booking before providing personal details or payment details.

38% increase in analytics accuracy for YHA

In addition, YHA can now more accurately identify key stages within the funnel that require attention to improve conversion rate and identify best-performing products, by using the new custom dimensions. They can also track and monitor performance for all kinds of conversions and transactions – such as form submission and booking type – in a more accurate fashion.

YHA have worked with In Marketing We Trust for a few years now. Freddy and the team are knowledgeable, capable and professional. They understand our business and our SEO requirements, and have developed strategies and tactics to help us achieve our objectives. The results speak for themselves. I am happy to recommend In Marketing We Trust to other companies.

Julie LeungDigital Marketing Manager, YHA

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