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This is a 3 part series on cross domain tracking with Google Analytics in non-standard situations:

  1. Part 1
  2. Part 2
  3. Part 3

In figuring out how to use Google Analytics on a site that spans multiple top level domains, (i.e. transfer cookies across multiple domains) there are many good resources out there (books, blogs, helpfiles and more). Given the amount of work done on this topic and the frequency with which it occurs on websites, you might not think this would be a difficult problem, and in most common cases, it isn’t.

But while there are well documented and standard methods that specifically deal with hyperlinks and HTML forms, you may find yourself in some unfamiliar territory if your site uses other types of navigation methods (scripted redirects, server side, etc…).

Take, for example, the simple snippet below:

<code>
<a href="" onclick="redirectFunction()">Link across top level domains</a>
function redirectFunction()
{
window.location.replace('http://www.xxx.yyy/RedirectTarget.html');
}
</code>

To address this one, you might write a wrapper function that encapsulates the redirect and inserts a call to the pageTracker._link(<urlToRedirectTo>) function, so we’d do something like the following:

<code>
function redirectFunction()
{
window.location.replace(GoogleAnalyticsCookieAppend('http://www.xxx.yyy/
RedirectTarget.html'));
}
function GoogleAnalyticsCookieAppend(uri)
{
pageTracker._link(uri);
return uri;
}
</code>

Note: You’ll want to make sure to include the “return false” at the end of your call here.

This will work for cases where we have a hyperlink (anchor tag) doing this direct javascript call, as follows:

<code>
<a href="" onclick="GoogleAnalyticsCookieAppend('http://www.xxx.yyy/
RedirectTarget.html');return false;"> This one tries indirectly  </a>
</code>

But what about something that’s not a hyperlink, like a div container?

<code>
<div id="mydiv" onclick="redirectFunction();return false;">
Content for this container
</div>
</code>

This is neither a hyperlink nor a form, and our attempts at solving this problem with pageTracker._link() and pageTracker._linkByPost() just don’t seem to work…

Continue to Part 2

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