Analytics Edge makes it easy to get your data into Microsoft Excel. You can place multiple queries anywhere in your workbook as this video explains. More
This is a PROVEN WORKING SOLUTION to remove referral spam in your Google Analytics. Updated for 2021: Bothered by referral spam from the likes of trafficnow.club, bot-traffic.xyz or other domains? Implement a Custom Segment as described in #3 below or, if you catch the spam traffic on the day it happens, a Spam Crawler Filter (#4). More
This Google Analytics API error indicates that you are referencing an invalid view ID. The view ID is the number that appears beside the view in the Accounts wizard (Analytics Edge connector for Google Analytics), or in the Google Analytics web interface when you click on the account selector at the top. More
This Google Analytics API error indicates that the metrics and dimensions being requested cannot be used together. This usually happens when you are creating a custom report, and you added a combination of fields that the API rejects. More
This Google Analytics API error indicates that the security token for the account you are using has failed. Normally the security tokens are auto-renewed, but if you changed the account password or otherwise changed your security settings, the renewal can also fail. More
This Google Analytics API error means that the selected advanced segment is not available to the account you are using. This usually happens when you share a report with a coworker. Advanced segments in Google Analytics are personal assets and are associated with your login account. More
This Google Analytics API error indicates that the account you are using cannot access the Google Analytics view (profile). This usually happens when the Google Analytics account owner removes your access (a typical agency problem). More
This Google Analytics API error indicates that there was a problem processing your query request. This can occur if you make too many bad queries in a short period of time, or if you use use up your quota for the day. In some cases, it may indicate that the server was too busy to process your request (usually for a very large query). More
This error usually occurs when the cells you referenced in a query have moved or the contents are changed. Analytics Edge connectors offer the ability to use cell references for the dates, but the references can get out of alignment if you add rows or columns in the worksheet, or if you renamed the worksheet. More
With the surge in working-from-home employees, many people are trying to figure out how to exclude this “internal” traffic from their Google Analytics reports. There is a simple option for sites with low to moderate traffic. More
A lot of people want to include the Google Analytics clicks and impressions metrics in their reports, and are frustrated when they see most reporting tools do not offer those metrics. The reason is that they don’t actually come from Google Analytics — they come from Google Search Console, and that uses a separate API.
Did you know you could report on individual sessions in Google Analytics 4? You just need to add the Session ID dimension to your report. Before you can do that, you need to create the Custom Dimension to capture it — the event parameter already exists! More
The Google Analytics Pro connector from Analytics Edge supports the extra dimensions and metrics available to Google Analytics 360 customers. It also supports the new resource quotas, allowing GA 360 customers to get unsampled reports up to 100 million sessions! More
Comparing Google Analytics 4 page reports to the old Universal Analytics version exposes another ‘little’ difference between the measurement systems: your page titles can be shown in different languages, spread across twice as many rows (your data will vary).
Updated 2021-03-27 after a deep dive into additional metrics…
As reported in one of my Misunderstood Metrics articles, one of the quirks we discovered in Google Analytics is that sessions that span midnight are restarted on the first hit after midnight, even though the session id (and Count of Sessions dimension value) doesn’t change. But what quirks await us in Google Analytics 4?
FAQ: do NOT encode the “ga:” in the field names of your expression!
Custom filter expressions can be used in the Google Analytics connectors, but there are a number of rules you must follow. This is documented in Google’s API Reference, but it is part of the old v3 API documentation, which could be removed at any time, so I have copied and embellished it here.
One of the features of the Google Analytics connector is the ability to create a custom dynamic segment, which is really useful when you are sharing workbooks with others. Custom segments in Google Analytics are stored as personal assets — they are associated with the login account, not the Google Analytics account. Because of that, using one of your custom segments in a query means other people cannot run your query; they will get an error when they try to refresh the query. More
Google Analytics provides a New vs Returning report to measure the pull of your site and the extent to which you are encouraging first time users to return. Making this report with Analytics Edge allows you to easily track these metrics the way you want to see. More
If you find your Google Analytics reports won’t download any data beyond 25 months, chances are this is due to your data retention settings. By default, they are set to purge after 26 months.
To change this, go into your Google Analytics Admin settings for your account: Property Settings > Tracking Info > Data Retention.
“I want to increase the number of returning visitors.” Now you need a report to track your progress. This article will help you navigate Google Analytics to find the right data, and to produce a meaningful report using Analytics Edge. More
For people measuring their website traffic with Google Analytics, there is nothing more frustrating than building a really popular web page that gets tons of visits, but GA shows Session Duration close to ZERO! The problem is that Google Analytics doesn’t measure the time on the last page of a visit, so even if they read your article for 5 minutes, if they don’t click on another page, their session is recorded as 0 seconds. Sigh…. More
The Google Analytics report for Frequency displays a Count of Sessions dimension that is misleading in several ways. More
As more and more people start the process of switching over to the new Google Analytics 4 for website tracking, they are discovering that the session counts are significantly different from the previous release of Google Analytics (a.k.a. Universal Analytics). My recommendation: stop focusing on sessions — focus on user engagement with your content instead.
Since Google Analytics 4 is still under development, this is just an introductory article.
Google Analytics was plagued with custom reporting problems by mixing metrics and dimensions with different scopes (e.g. sessions for pages). Well, even though Google Analytics 4 is very different, it shares the same problem: it has dimensions and metrics that are user-scoped, session-scoped, event(hit)-scoped, and item-scoped. More
Why do New + Returning Visitors add up to more than the total Users? How can I have more New Users than Users who are ‘New Visitors’? This Misunderstood Metrics article explores the Behavior > New vs Returning report in Google Analytics, and why the numbers can be confusing. More
How can the Average Session Duration be less than the Average Time on Page? In Google Analytics, seeing the time spent on your website or on individual pages is not as obvious as it first appears. This Misunderstood Metrics article explores the concept of time in Google Analytics…or lost time as the case may be. More
Google Analytics has recently changed, introducing a new Unique Events metric calculation. This article has not yet been updated to reflect that change — Mike Sullivan.
The wizard-based automation provided by the Analytics Edge Core Add-in for Excel makes it easy to combine data from multiple sources. This article explores how you can build a Waterfall Report that includes data from Google Webmaster Tools (now Google Search), Bing Webmaster Tools, Google Analytics and an external database. More
When analyzing website traffic, there are times you might want a full listing of the website’s pages…even those that never get any traffic or impressions. Google Analytics and Google Search Console will only report on pages were there is data, so these unrecognized pages continue to be overlooked. This article shows how the Analytics Edge Core Add-in can read the website’s sitemap files to extract a full listing of pages. More
With the [undocumented] addition of the Client ID dimension to the Google Analytics API, you can now use the Analytics Edge Core Add-in and Google Analytics Pro connector to recreate the User Explorer report in Google Analytics. More
If you have transitioned to the new Google Analytics 4, you have probably noticed that there is no Bounce Rate metric available. Instead they push an ‘Engaged Sessions’ number, which is kind of like the opposite to a Bounce Rate. What if you really want the old metric? Well, a little math and you get your answer, but you probably won’t like it. More
Google released new guidance on how to collect and report Core Web Vitals using Google Analytics 4, but the approach makes use of some pretty complicated concepts with BigQuery. In this article, I want to show you how to make similar reports in Excel using Analytics Edge with a lot less work and complexity. More
When I was working on a new Excel report for my Google Webmaster Tools connector, I started seeing traffic from a specific query phrase that didn’t make sense, so I dug a little deeper, and what I found made me question the very foundation of conventional SEO wisdom and the meaning behind Google Webmaster Tools data. More
The key to understanding the difference between Universal Analytics (previously known as Google Analytics) and Google Analytics 4 is that UA had things like a Session object, and GA 4 does not. Everything becomes so much easier to understand once you realize this fact. It also becomes clear why GA 4 is needed now. More
The Google Analytics Pro connector contains a Save Filter function that lets you copy view filters from one account to a number of others with ease. More
While all of us fight to get Google Analytics referral spam under control, one piece of well-intentioned, but bad advice comes up over and over again: use the Referral Exclusion List. Some people (myself included) have stated that is a bad idea, but no one has taken the time to really explain why. Here is the Why… More