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Google launches new tools to help customise business reports

Author's avatar By Dave Chaffey 30 Jan, 2013
Essential Essential topic

The new Google Analytics Solutions Gallery tools

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Recommended link: Google Analytics Solutions Gallery

Google Analytics offers many features to customise its reports to a business, which is great for a free tool. But I know from running Google Analytics training courses that many of the customisation tools aren’t used, so reports aren't really tailored to a business and different users in the business. I think this is mainly down to the time and specialist input needed for customisation.

Google are obviously aware of this issue since they have created a new set of tools within their Solutions Gallery to help users with customisation. I think this is a great initiative and will be useful both to marketers at companies and consultants and agencies improving reporting for their clients.

What type of customisations are available?

Customisation are available for three different types of assets that can be shared between profiles for different sites as I'll explain at the end of this post. In the Gallery you can choose from pre-built:

  • Dashboards - these top-level views combine different graphs and charts focusing on a marketing activity or type of business. Examples that I recommend taking a look at include social media and mobile Ecommerce.
  • Custom Reports - The custom reports offer more detail on social media, search marketing at Ecommerce. If you work on an Ecommerce site the “Daily Ecommerce Report” offering to “Keep tabs on all parts of the ecommerce lifecycle – acquisition, engagement and conversion – in a single table” looks really useful, but is simply a custom report of engagement and sales by channel, still useful but many will have this already.
  • Advanced segments - As you many know - use these to isolate groups of visitors to understand or report on them, for example review behaviour of searchers who arrived at the web site using a non-brand term, so unaware of the brand.

In the new tool, there are 15+ advanced segments that will be most useful to search marketers. We have written about some of these before which we think should be available on any site for people who are serious about search marketing. I recommend taking a look at:

  • Branded Traffic and Non-branded traffic - I always run a tutorial on these on training courses - now it’s much easier, but you still need to remember to update your brand name and add variations.
  • Long Tail Keywords - 3, 4, 5 and 6+ are available so you can isolate these. To be useful these usually need an additional analysis to find out the main qualifiers.
  • Ad position and CPC performance - There are several tools for analysing Google AdWords too

All good stuff, although note that goal or Ecommerce setup aren’t included in these tools, they’re more complex so need manual setup as I explain in this post on Google Analytics Goal Setup.

How do you use these tools?

Setting up the tools is easy:

1. Select the relevant options.

2. Click Download.

3. Select which Google Analytics Profile (website) you want them to apply to.

4. Report downloads and customise (for the Keywords) and test or save.

5. Test and share. If there are multiple users on your Analytics account you will have to share these assets such as Segments with others. Google has a neat new feature to help here - Pritesh Patel has written a separate tutorial explaining how to share Assets in Google Analytics - recommended.

All-in-all, a great initiative, with Google promising to extend the options available through the year. You do still need a certain level of knowledge to apply the tools and the Google Analytics Help doesn't tend to explain how to use the tool from a marketer's perspective. That's what we have tried to do with our 7 Steps Guide to Google Analytics which introduces the features and measures in Google Analytics and shows how you can use them to analyse and improve results.

Author's avatar

By Dave Chaffey

Digital strategist Dr Dave Chaffey is co-founder and Content Director of online marketing training platform and publisher Smart Insights. Dave is editor of the 100+ templates, ebooks and courses in the digital marketing resource library created by our team of 25+ digital marketing experts. Our resources are used by our Premium members in more than 100 countries to Plan, Manage and Optimize their digital marketing. Free members can access our free sample templates here. Dave is a keynote speaker, trainer and consultant who is author of 5 bestselling books on digital marketing including Digital Marketing Excellence and Digital Marketing: Strategy, Implementation and Practice. My personal site, DaveChaffey.com, lists my latest Digital marketing and E-commerce books and support materials including a digital marketing glossary. In 2004 he was recognised by the Chartered Institute of Marketing as one of 50 marketing ‘gurus’ worldwide who have helped shape the future of marketing. Please connect on LinkedIn to receive updates or ask me a question.

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