A very short post but still relevant if you have ever come across this issue.
total events and goal conversions are different! Why, surely they should be the same
So you have set up some events through additional event tracking – downloads, submit clicks, external link clicks etc.
You now make a goal* with the same event (good post on setting event based goals at sproutsocial)
Then you look at total events and look at goal conversions and they are different! Why, surely they should be the same?
Well no they shouldn’t. Goals conversions are unique per session, so the first time the goal is converted it is recorded. Any further goal conversions in that same session are not recorded. Events on the other hand are not unique. Each and every event is recorded no matter if it is the first time, second time or 10th time.
What you should be able to equate is roughly the following:
Total Events = Goal conversions x Events per visit (i.e. there is a correlation between goals converted, events and events per visit)
*Why make an event a goal too?
Firstly number of goals in GA are limited so only set up GA goals if they relate to your “Digital Marketing and Measurement Model“. Goals are used in several places within GA with some important benefits. You can look at which landing pages get the best goal conversion, you can look at the goal journey, see what sources led to conversion etc etc. using Conversions rather than pageviews/ visits is far better when it comes to measurement and site success.