Tracking Scroll Depth to understand Bounce Rates

How-to: Track Scroll Depth in Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager to distinguish if high bounce rates are good or bad.

  1. Open Google Tag Manager (GTM)

    scroll depth

    This exercise is assuming you’ve already setup and installed Google Tag Manager on your website.

  2. Add a new Tag

    scroll depth settings
    • Select Google Analytics: Universal Analytics
    • Track Type: Event
    • Category: Scroll Depth
    • Action: {{Page Path}}
    • Label: {{Scroll Depth Threshold}}%
    • Non-Interaction Hit: True
    • Google Analytics settings: {{GA}} (If not set up, see below)
    • Save Tag
  3. Add a Google Analytics Variable

    new variable

    Skip this step if you’ve already setup Google Analytics Variables.

    • Click on New Variable …
    • Add your Google Analytics ID
    • If you aren’t sure where to find it, here is how to find your ID.
    • Save your new variable.
  4. Add a Scroll Depth Variable

    scrolling variables
    • Select Variables from the left navigation
    • Click on Configure in the top right corner
    • Select all three Scroll Variables
    • Save
  5. Add a Trigger

    scroll trigger
    • Venture back to your Tags
    • Select your Scroll Trigger Tag
    • Add a Trigger at the bottom
    • Select Trigger Type: Scroll Depth
    • Check Vertical Scroll Depth
    • Pick Percentages
    • Add: 25, 50, 75, 100
    • Enable this trigger on: Window Load (gtm.load)
    • This trigger fires on: All Pages (select Some Pages if you want to specify which pages it loads on)
    • Save
  6. Publish in GTM


    Publish your new Tag/Tigger in Google Tag Manager.

  7. Next, in Google Analytics

    goal settings
    • Under Admin in GA
    • Select Goals
    • Create a new Goal (+ NEW GOAL)
    • Goal setup: Custom
    • Goal description 
      • Name: Scroll Depth
      • Type: Event
    • Goal details: 
      • Category (Equals to): Scroll Depth
      • Label (Equals to): 50%
    • Save

Now, wait for the analytics to build up data.

Published on: 2020-12-21
Updated on: 2021-01-24

Author: Isaac Adams-Hands

Isaac Adams-Hands is an SEO Director, Full Stack Developer, and InfoSec enthusiast. He received his Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Western Sydney before joining various marketing positions in search portals, higher education, and addiction recovery marketing agencies.