KristaKrista Seiden

All articles by Krista

 

Point & Counterpoint: Why you should give GA4 a chance

There is a lot of negativity out there when it comes to Google Analytics 4. I get it. It’s a new product that looks, feels, and works differently from what we’re all used to in Universal Analytics. And as many readers would rightly suggest, it’s still missing features. All that being said, I’m here to offer an unpopular opinion: GA4 is actually a great tool. Not only that, it’s a lot more resilient for the future (think privacy, cookies, scaled data models).  I want to address some of the bigger image issues facing GA4 today. So let’s take a look at some of the biggest complaints and counterpoints to why you should go all in on Google Analytics 4.  Point 1: Universal Analytics is just fine, no need to rock
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RIP Universal Analytics, Hello GA4 

Universal Analytics is dead. No, really. It’s just been given a deprecation date. Here’s what you need to know: Google has just announced (as of March 16, 2022) that Universal Analytics will stop collecting new data on July 1, 2023 for free GA customers. That means you have ~15 months to prepare. (Universal Analytics 360 (the paid version) customers will have until October 1, 2023 (~18 months) to switchover). For some months after that date, you will still be able to access your Universal Analytics data, but no new data will be added to your UA views. And then some months after that, Google will shut down access to Universal Analytics altogether.  Now that Universal Analytics has an official sunset date (July 1, 2023!), it’s time to get serious about
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The Ultimate Guide for setting up a Google Analytics 4 property

Are you setting up a GA4 property for the first time? Here are my top 10 must-haves for getting your new GA4 property up and running fast and with settings organized to help you make the most of your analytics data! Follow these tips and you’ll be well on your way to having a best practice GA4 set up. The first 3 tips are focused on getting your GA4 property enabled and collecting data, and the following 7 focus on ensuring you have a well-organized and robust GA4 property set up.  Creating a GA4 property and collecting data 1/ Create a Google Analytics 4 property This first step is actually really easy. You’ll go to GA, create a new property, and the default will be a new GA4 property. Go
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5 Quick Tips to help you better use GA4

Google Analytics 4 (aka GA4) is so different (looking & acting) that it can be really overwhelming to start digging in. So here are 5 quick tips to help you feel more comfortable and better use GA4. Tip 1: Make the reporting UI work for you! For the first time in GA history, GA4 allows you to actually modify the UI, both the reports themselves and the left nav organization of reports. This means you can do things like build out report collections for specific teams so they have a clear place to go for their reporting needs. Here you can see a collection of my favorite reports: You can do these modifications yourself by navigating to the “Library” section of GA4 (bottom left hand nav when you are in
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Using Secondary Dimensions in Google Analytics 4

Secondary dimensions in GA4 (and in Universal Analytics as well) are a critical tool to help you get more insight from your data. They allow you to break down your primary dimensions into meaningful and relevant data. They transform the way you analyze primary dimensions and gain information. We’ll explore what secondary dimensions are as well as the benefits to using them in your reporting and analysis efforts. What Are Secondary Dimensions? Secondary dimensions break down each line of primary dimension data so that you can get a better understanding of what exactly you’re looking at in more granular chunks. You will be able to view the primary dimension within a table split out by an additional dimension of data within the same table. This gives you the opportunity to
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Step-by-Step: Linking Google Analytics 4 to Google Ads

Linking Google Analytics to Google Ads can unlock a ton of new data in your GA property. Setting up this link will bring in data such as cost metrics, clicks and impressions, and so much more. On the flip side, you’ll be able to easily set up conversion tracking for your Google Ads because you’ll be able to bring in your Conversion events from Google Analytics to use for your Google Ads campaigns.  Setting up this link between Google Analytics 4 and Google Analytics is super easy. I’ll show you how in this 3 step guide.   Step 1: Initiate the linking under under the Product Links section in the Admin console In the Google Analytics 4 Admin console, under the Property column, scroll down to the Product Linking section and
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Realtime Reporting in Google Analytics 4

If you’re interested in checking out the activity on your website as soon as it happens then the new Realtime report in GA4 is exactly what you should be looking at. This report lets you monitor all of the activity on your website as it happens (within the past 30 min), and you’ll be able to see how the visitors on your app or site behave (what pages they are on, what events they are triggering, etc). We’ll take a look at what realtime reporting is, how it’s changed in Google Analytics 4, and all of the benefits it provides. What is Realtime Reporting? Before we get into the specifics of how realtime reporting has changed or how it can help you, we have to discuss what exactly it is.
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Setting Up Custom Dimensions in Google Analytics 4

Custom Dimensions in Google Analytics 4 are a great way to add more in-depth data to the events you are collecting. They are basically a dimension (or a metric if you are setting up a Custom Metric which follows the same steps as below) that you have created yourself. Essentially, they are additional pieces of data that you are sending to Google Analytics 4 as parameters that you then configure as custom dimensions in your GA4 interface. Google Analytics 4 gives you the power to collect and analyze data that it typically doesn’t automatically generate itself. Custom dimensions are not only super simple to set up but they’re a great way to get deeper insights about the events being collected on your site.  In this article, you will be guided
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Data Driven Attribution in Google Analytics 4

What is the best Attribution Model?? Ah, the age-old question… Attribution is a big hairy topic, and I’m not going to write an essay on picking the best attribution model, because the best will always depend on your individual business… BUT, I’m excited to say that Google Analytics 4 now has Data Driven Attribution (DDA) available for ALL customers – both free and 360 customers! In Universal Analytics (aka GA3), DDA was only available to 360 customers, so this is a great addition to the free version of GA4! (Side note – DDA is available in the Attribution Beta in UA for free for everyone, but since this is outside of the main Universal Analytics interface, I’m not including that here) Let’s start with a few definitions: What is Data Driven
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Pages Reporting in Google Analytics 4

The Pages report is a fantastic way of gaining a better understanding of your website’s performance. It allows you to monitor and track how popular each page and screen is with your users.  Page reporting is one of the most important aspects of Google Analytics data analysis and should be one of your favorite features. We’ll fill you in on what pages reporting is, how it’s beneficial to you, and what it looks like in GA4. What Is the Pages Report? Looking at the Pages report is a fairly common way to analyze your data. Basically, it shows you a breakdown of how your website and mobile app pages or screens are doing. Pages reporting in Google Analytics 4 specifically measures the performance of a web page or screen based
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Where did my Bounce Rate go?? Meet Engaged Sessions in GA4

Bounce rate is a metric that’s mentioned a lot when discussing user engagement, but it’s not necessarily the beating pulse for a site’s health that it’s sometimes made out to be. This is in large part due to the fundamental changes with how websites are designed today (vs 10-15 years ago when GA was a much newer tool for website analysis) and how users interact with them. Google Analytics has recently replaced bounce rate with a new form of measuring user engagement. Here’s what you need to know. What Bounce Rate Represents A “bounce” is recorded whenever a user visits a single page on your site or app without interacting more deeply.  But Bounce Rate generally only tells you that there is a problem, while deeper digging is required to
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Step-by-Step: Integrate Google Search Console with GA4

Understanding Organic Search data is important for any SEO or web analyst. In Universal Analytics, you could integrate your Google Search Console property with your GA property. You can now also do this for Google Analytics 4 properties! I’ll show you how to get this set up in this step-by-step guide. Step 1: In your GA4 admin section, open up the Search Console integration tab Head on over to the admin section of your Google Analytics 4 property and under the property column, scroll down and under the “Product Linking” section you’ll see a new option for “Search Console Linking” Clicking in, you’ll be taken to an overview screen which shows your linking options. You’ll want to click the blue “Link” button in the upper right hand corner in order
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New Navigation & Reports in Google Analytics 4

BIG updates have come to the GA4 user interface! Updates include new navigation, new reports, and report customization. These updates are live now in the GA4 demo account now, and should be rolling out to your properties soon. In this post, I’ll break down these updates piece by piece. First, you’ll notice that the left hand navigation section is now structured as a multi-nav setup with a main nav that groups reports and features into sections, and a secondary nav that slides out for each of the main nav sections.  These new grouped sections are:  Reports – a collection of all of the reports that previously lived under the Lifecycle and User reporting sections Explore – FKA “Analysis”, this renamed feature is now featured in the main nav as Explore
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Creating Events and Conversions in the GA4 User Interface

Another VERY exciting and new addition to Google Analytics 4 properties is the ability to create events directly within the User Interface. Again, this is something you’ve never been able to do before within Google Analytics, and it’s a huge step forward to customizing your event and parameter data to get it exactly as you want it. It is also a great way to be able to create more specific conversion events as well!  Let’s walk through it step by step. Creating new events (and conversions) in GA4 Step 1: Click to “Create Event” You’ll start in the “All events” report in GA4, and on the top right of the events table, click the middle button for “Create event” You’ll then be taken to the Custom events screen. Click “Create”
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Modifying Events in the GA4 User Interface

Something VERY exciting and new to Google Analytics 4 properties is the ability to modify events directly within the User Interface. This is something you’ve never been able to do before within Google Analytics, and it’s a huge step forward for putting the power in the hands of marketers and analysts to have their data show exactly as they need it.  Let’s walk through it step by step. Modifying events in GA4 I love Enhanced Measurement in GA, and have it enabled for all possible events it will collect. One of those events is Outbound Clicks. However, when the Outbound click event fires, it is actually collected as just “click” and shows up like the below: This bothers me because it doesn’t seem very intuitive to me, so I’d like
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New Data Deletion Feature in Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 is releasing a Data Deletion feature, and it’s really exciting because for the first time, you can do surgical deletion of just certain pieces of data, all within a simple UI. Further, while the changes are not permanent for 7 days (giving you time to change your mind), you can see the results of what you are deleting immediately within your data so you get a sense of if the deletion is meeting your needs.  Think of the use cases here… wrong campaign data, gone. Weird parameters or a single line item of PII, gone. This. Is. Huge.!!!  Read on for a step by step detail of how to set this up. Step 1: Open the Data Deletion Request builder Start by heading over to the Admin
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Hello to Google Analytics 4

Today, Google announced that App+Web is being rebranded to Google Analytics 4. This sets the stage for Google to push GA4 more mainstream. Here’s how: Google Analytics 4 is now the main property type in Google Analytics. If you are creating a new property in your account, by default, it will be a GA4 property. You’ll still have the option to create a Universal Analytics property if needed though. Google Analytics 4 is the future. We don’t have any timelines yet, and based on how the GA team phased out Classic Analytics (when they moved to Universal Analytics) over several years, there is still time, but GA4 is not only the new default, but also the place where new features and development are focused.  There are a lot of exciting
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New Reporting & Navigation in Google Analytics 4 (fka App+Web)

Google Analytics 4 (formerly known as App+Web) finally has a new navigation structure and reports to go along with it! If you’ve missed the more familiar look and feel of reporting in Universal Analytics (like I have!), this will be a very welcome update to GA4 (App+Web) and help you to not only get more familiar with the data you’re seeing (because, well, it will look more familiar), but also help you relate what you know from Universal Analytics to GA 4. To start, let’s take a look at that left hand navigation. You’ll notice that the navigation now has more expandability, similar to the reporting tree in Universal Analytics. Previous App+Web navigation: New GA4 navigation: If you look closely at the main card on the home screen, you’ll also
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New Templates in App+Web Analysis

In this post I’m excited to highlight new templates, covering Use Cases and Industries, as well as a couple of newer techniques now available in App+Web Analysis.  To find these new templates, navigate to the Analysis Hub, and in the upper right hand corner, click on “Template gallery” to show all of the options now available.  Once you open up the Template Gallery, you’ll see the new options. This includes an expanded list of techniques, as well as two new sections which are pre-populated templates covering some of the major use cases of Google Analytics (Acquisition, Behavior, and Conversions, aka the ABC’s of Analytics!), as well as the first (of what I hope will be many!) industry specific templates. It’s a great way to get started with some pre-built reporting
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New App+Web Data Studio Connector

Ever since Google Analytics App+Web first launched, users have been asking when there will be a Data Studio template. Well, the wait is over! Google Data Studio now has a direct connector into your App+Web property, no need to go through BigQuery anymore to get your App+Web data into your favorite data visualization platform 🙂 It’s pretty simple to setup, so follow the below screenshots to get your App+Web data flowing into Data Studio today. First step, connect a new data source to a report. Note that App+Web doesn’t have it’s own widget, it will just be another property under Google Analytics, so select the Google Analytics widget: Next, you’ll choose the account where your App+Web property lives, and then click to connect the specific App+Web property from the list
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New Ecommerce Setup and Reporting in Google Analytics App+Web

The wait is over! Ecommerce reporting is finally here for App+Web properties in Google Analytics!  While the Ecommerce schema for App+Web was released back in March, reporting has only just now been released, so if you’ve been sending Ecomm events to A+W over the past several months, you’ll know that until now, the only way to see data on these events was either 1) raw event count in the Events table, or 2) in BigQuery. Full Ecommerce reporting, pre-aggregated into reports on things like Ecommerce revenue, Purchases, Promotions, Items, etc, similar to the out of the box reporting in Universal Analytics is now available for a more in-depth (and in-UI) understanding of how your Ecommerce flows are working on your site.  *Please note that access to this new reporting is
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Step by Step: Setting up a GA4 Property in Google Analytics

In this Step by Step guide, I’ll take you through the three steps you’ll need to go through to set up a new GA4 Property in Google Analytics. Note, this is an update to an earlier blog post covering the same topic, however, in this new post, the initial steps of creating a property can now be done in the Google Analytics interface rather than in the Firebase console. Yay! Step 1: Create a new Account in Google Analytics I will actually start from the Account creation screen here, because I am going to create a whole new account for a new website I’m working on for KS Digital. So step 1 is to create a new account. If you don’t need to separate out the account due to different
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Recap of ObservePoint’s Validate Conference

I’m writing this while on a plane from Salt Lake City back to the Bay Area, despite a 3 hr delay at the airport, with a smile on my face. Validate 2019 by ObservePoint was one of the best conferences I’ve been to in quite some time. Why? What made it so special? It combined all the right elements: great and inspirational speakers, awesome networking opportunities, and an absolutely stunning setting.  Let’s break it down. Great speakers, collaborative sessions The speakers at Validate 2019 were top notch, with heavy hitters in the Analytics industry such as Adam Greco and Michele Kiss of Analytics Demystified, James McCormick of Forrester, and Kevin Jorgeson, world-class athlete and climber of the Dawn Wall in Yosemite.  Kevin’s talk was especially inspiring, as he talked about
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Analyzing Reports in the new App + Web Property

Now that we’ve had data coming in to our new App + Web property for some time, I’d like to deep-dive on a topic near and dear to any analyst’s heart: Reporting. Being able to map what we see in an A+W property back to something we know in Universal Google Analytics is important to help us as analysts make (or rather, smooth) the mental transition. To do that, I’ll look at a few common reports from Universal Google Analytics and A+W for the same time period to compare and contrast. Keep in mind, they are collecting data in different ways, so it’s reasonable to see a difference in numbers for things like Users and Sessions. Before we begin, I want to take a moment to define some of the
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Step by Step: Setting up a GA4 Event Tag in GTM

In my last post, I showed you how to set up the Google Analytics: GA4 Configuration tag in GTM. In this post, I’ll show you how to set up the next piece of the puzzle, the Google Analytics: GA4 Event tag. You’ll use this tag to set up all of your recommended and custom events that don’t come out of the box with Enhanced Measurement (more info on that here). Step 1: Select “Google Analytics: GA4 Event” from the new tag configuration pane   After you’ve successfully set up your “Google Analytics: GA4 Configuration” tag (see this post for step by step directions), the next thing to do is to set up your first “Google Analytics: GA4 Event” tag. To do so, select “New Tag” and choose from a couple
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Step by Step: Setting up a GA4 Config Tag in GTM

As a follow up to my Step by Step post on setting up a GA4 property, in this post, I’ll show you how to setup your first tag for GA4 to start collecting data via Google Tag Manager. My friend and GTM expert Simo Ahava has also posted about this in his GA4 setup guide here, so be sure to check out that post as well.  Step 1: Select “Google Analytics: GA4 Configuration” from the new tag configuration pane in Google Tag Manager  The first thing to do once you’ve opened Google Tag Manager is to select “New Tag” and choose from a couple of new tag types you’ll now notice in the slide out window. In this case, we’ll select the “Google Analytics: GA4 Configuration” tag. The “Google Analytics:
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Step by Step: Setting up an App + Web Property

In this Step by Step guide, I’ll take you through the three steps you’ll need to go through to set up a new App + Web Property in Google Analytics. If you haven’t checked out my first post which goes into a detailed overview of this new property, I’d suggest stopping there first before continuing on with this article. First things first, for now (at least while it’s still in Beta), you’ll first need to create a Firebase project, and link to Google Analytics in order to get the new property to show up in Google Analytics. Step 1: Create a Firebase Project Start by going to console.firebase.com to either log into your Firebase account, or to get started creating your first project. To create a new project, Click ‘Create a
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Streamview in Google Analytics

One of the cool new reports coming over from Google Analytics for Firebase (GA4F) to the new App + Web Property in Google Analytics is Streamview. This is essentially Realtime 2.0 (if you’re familiar with the Realtime reports in Google Analytics).  What’s the difference? Realtime 1.0 (aka in Universal Analytics) is the original Realtime report in Google Analytics. You’ll recognize the iconic (though arguably not super beautiful looking) design below. It tells you how many people are on your site right now, what the referral source is, where they are geographically, what events are happening on site, etc. It doesn’t allow you to segment or dive deeper into that data though.  Streamview (aka Realtime 2.0) first made its appearance in GA4F, along with its counterpart, Debugview (a super cool tool
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Pathing in Google Analytics

As I mentioned in my post from yesterday talking about the new App + Website properties in Google Analytics, the Analysis section of Google Analytics has gotten even better! Why? Because Pathing is now available in Analysis! I know what you’re thinking… “but Krista, GA has had Behavior Flow and User Flow reports for forever, and they are terrible.” And yes, you’d be correct. The previous versions (still available in GA today) of flow reports never quite hit the mark. It’s no secret, I happily shared my opinions of their shortcomings on many stages while representing Google as the evangelist for Google Analytics. For my last 2 years at Google, I took on Product Management for parts of Google Analytics, including building out a new version of Funnels (similar to
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New App + Web Properties in Google Analytics

The wait is over, the new App + Web property feature has officially launched to open public beta! Do keep in mind this is still a Beta – the product is early, doesn’t yet have all the features we all want, and is changing regularly. And, the team wants your feedback! I’m super excited for where this new Google Analytics release is headed, and know there is a lot more to come to continue to improve what’s there. What does this mean? You can now create a new property type in Google Analytics that will allow you to combine App + Web data in the same property. This new type of measurement uses the same data schema as Google Analytics for Firebase (GA4F), and works hand in hand with GA4F,
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Goodbye, Google

As I sit here to put pen to paper on this post, I’m overwhelmed by all sorts of emotions. Sadness, excitement, fear, gratitude, and so much more. The past 6.5 years have been some of the best, and some of the most trying of my work life, but one thing is for sure, it is damn hard to leave Google. Sure, there’s the free food, the onsite amenities such as gyms, micro-kitchens, massages, and all those creature comforts that I’ve become so used to. There’s the business class international flights and nice hotels that budgets allow me to have when I travel (which I’ve been fortunate enough to do a lot of on behalf of Google). But it’s the scale of the work and the people I’ve been fortunate to
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Deep-Dive: Segment Overlap in Advanced Analysis

This is a follow on post to my first Introducing Advanced Analysis and my second deep-diving on the Funnels technique. If you haven’t checked those ones out yet, do so first. In this post, I want to walk through getting the most out of the Segment Overlap technique in Advanced Analysis. The Segment Overlap technique in Advanced Analysis is exciting for many reasons. In my opinion, it really stretches the capabilities of Google Analytics and takes us into a whole new realm of discovery and actionability. What do I mean by that? Highlights: Include up to 3 segments to compare visually and via table what the overlap of users (or whichever metric you desire) is Breakdown this overlap by a desired dimension. For example, breakdown the overlap of Organic Traffic
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Deep-Dive: Funnels in Advanced Analysis

This is a follow on post to my first post Introducing Advanced Analysis. If you haven’t checked that one out yet, do so first. In this post, I want to walk through getting the most out of the Funnels technique in Advanced Analysis. The Funnels technique in Advanced Analysis is powerful for many reasons. It was inspired by Custom Funnels in Analytics 360, which has been one of the highest rated features in Analytics 360 since it’s launch. Custom Funnels let you create unique funnels based on events or pageviews including up to 5 steps, and allow you to create a segment from the drop-off to remarket to. Funnels in Advanced Analysis takes that functionality further and extends it to make a tool that is incredibly flexible and powerful for
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Introduction to Advanced Analysis

Google Analytics recently launched their new Advanced Analysis feature set into public beta for all Google Analytics 360 users. To say I’m excited about this launch would be an understatement. I’m beyond thrilled! This feature set is near and dear to me as I’ve been hard at work helping build it for quite some time now. In addition to my personal ties to it though, the practitioner in me is excited because the ability to slice and dice data, find interesting segments, analyze funnels, compare segments, and discover insights goes well beyond anything we’ve had in Google Analytics before. In short, it’s REALLY DAMN COOL! The tool launched with three techniques to help you take your analysis to the next level: Exploration: this is a table driven report that allows
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What’s New in Google Analytics for Firebase

Recently, I posted an Overview of Google Analytics for Firebase. If you haven’t read that article yet, I’d suggest starting there. Next, I want to recap some of the exciting new features announced this year at Google I/O (May, 2018). The first, and this is a big one, is ‘Project-level Reporting’. What does that mean? Previously, In Google Analytics for Firebase, you would have individual Apps within Projects. Each app would have it’s own reporting section (you would toggle between iOS and Android via a dropdown on the top left to choose which version of your app you wanted to analyze). What does this mean to you? Now, instead of having to toggle between apps to analyze your data separately, you can analyze it together. Of course, you can still
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Anomaly Detection in Google Analytics Intelligence

We’ve had ‘Custom Alerts’ in Google Analytics for a very long time. They used to look like this: They recently got an facelift and now look nicer, but the data is still the same: I’ve used these alerts for years to help me detect changes in traffic patterns as they occur (by sending an email alert) rather than at a later point during analysis. They still serve this purpose well. But when it comes to understanding what is driving an anomaly, or even detecting it and it’s degree without previously setting up an alert, the new Anomaly Detection features in Google Analytics Intelligence really shine. Anomaly Detection in Google Analytics Intelligence helps us answer a very important question (we may not have even known we had): “What are the statistically
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New Data Retention Policies in Google Analytics

This post reflects my personal thoughts (me = Krista Seiden) and in no way speaks on behalf of Google or Google Analytics. I’m not a lawyer and am not pretending to offer any sort of legal advice with the below post.   Now that the legal statements are out of the way, I want to be sure that my readers have the same understanding of some of the new settings taking effect in Google Analytics on May 25th, 2018 as I do. Starting May 25th, new data retention policies for Google Analytics will take effect. What is Data Retention you might ask? It’s the term used to describe the amount of time (in months in this case) that Google Analytics will retain property data beyond standard reporting. What is ‘Standard
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Using Event Tagging for Form Field Tracking

Many, many websites have forms on them: Subscription forms, Contact forms, Sign-up forms, etc. Understanding how users to your site or app interact with your form, and how they are succeeding through the form, or dropping out of the form, is an important key performance indicator (KPI) for your business to track. There are a lot of tools out there that have a specific purpose for form field tracking, but why use a separate tool when you can do it well with one you are already using? Using Google Analytics Event Tracking is a great way to track form field interaction on your sites and to create fallout funnels to understand success or lack there of for your forms. The benefit of using a tool you already have is data
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Defining Growth Marketing

Growth may just be the most over-hyped term of modern marketing. Yes, I said it. It’s overrated. That being said, there are some interesting distinctions that have evolved as the field of Growth Marketing has evolved. But first, I must share one of my favorite definitions of Growth Hacking to date from Dana DiTomaso: While I don’t necessarily agree that all Growth tactics are marketing without strategy, I do think there is some truth in the statement that the term was invented as a way to make marketing, especially the more quantitative parts of marketing, seem cooler. Now that we’ve got that out of the way, I have one other thing to say: Please, for the love of god, DON’T call it ‘Growth Hacking’. I talked Growth Marketing with my
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An Overview of Google Analytics for Firebase

In this post, I’m going to walk you through an overview of the Google Analytics for Firebase platform, including an overview of the out of the box reports you get with the Firebase SDK. What: Google Analytics for Firebase is the latest mobile analytics tracking platform from Google. This is meant as the next generation of mobile app tracking, taking the place of the Google Analytics Services SDK (this SDK is still supported in maintenance mode but is not being built on). Why: The Google Analytics Services SDK was built off of the web analytics model of Google Analytics. Google Analytics for Firebase (GA4F) was built from the ground up as an app-centric analytics platform, enabling it to track app type actions in a much more intuitive way When: Firebase Analytics
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2017 Travel By The Numbers

2017 was another travel year for the books! It didn’t top my years for time spent on the road, nor in number of nights away, miles flown, countries visited, or any of the major travel metrics I’ve tracked over the past several years (see 2014, 2015, and 2016 posts to compare). BUT, it was the year of continued long distance relationship status, resulting in a number of work trips to Europe paired with time to see my (now)  fiancé and his family. Thankfully for our relationship (but not for my travel stats), he moved to San Francisco at the end of April so my desire to travel for long periods of time decreased significantly. So the 2017 snapshot: Total miles flown: 105,471 miles via 63 flights on 11 different airlines visiting 17 different countries (outside of the airport). I also took 3
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Step-by-Step: New Element Visibility Trigger

As I mentioned in my post on the New Scroll Tracking Trigger, Google Tag Manager has just launched 2 new, exciting triggers. The second of those is one called ‘Element Visibility’. Depending on your use cases, this is likely even more exciting than Scroll Tracking (although I’d say that one was pretty damn exciting considering countless people have spent hours upon hours come up with technical solutions, blogging, and speaking about something as simple (in concept) as Scroll Tracking). With Element Visibility, you can now trigger a tag to fire based on an element on your site being in the viewport. You can specify the percentage of pixels that must be in the viewport (ex. 50% of the element’s pixels must be visible to count, a standard in viewability today),
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Step-by-Step: New Scroll Depth Trigger in Google Tag Manager

How far down my page did users go? Did they actually see the content below the fold? <— Said every executive ever to every analyst ever Scroll depth tracking has always been somewhat of a pain to setup in Google Analytics. Sure, there are guides like this one from Justin Cutroni, and there are WordPress plugins, but let’s be honest, until now, there haven’t been any good solutions to easily do this in Google Analytics. It’s required a ton of code and a developer to implement. Until now being the important words in that sentence… Google Tag Manager has just released a few new triggers, one of which is called “Scroll Depth” (and I can’t be more excited!!). This trigger allows you to easily setup a tag to track the
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Marketing Campaign Attribution – Take 2

It’s been 3+ years since I wrote my original blog post (https://www.kristaseiden.com/guide-ga-tracking-for-marketing-campaigns/) on campaign tracking, but it’s one that has aged well. I still point people to this post when they ask me for more info on best practices for setting up UTM tracking (or campaign tracking) because for the most part, things haven’t changed. I still recommend the below hierarchy for manual tagging of campaigns, using the (up to) 5 UTM parameter slots available to you in the URL: Campaign -name of your overarching campaign – e.g. spring-2013-collection or summer-2013-announcements. Be sure to follow a consistent campaign naming structure. Medium – the medium used to send your campaign. Include “email” for an email campaign, “cpc” for ads, “social” for a social network or “landing-page” if you’re tracking button clicks from a landing
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Personalizing with Google Analytics Audiences in Optimize 360

As analysts, we know a decent amount about our online customers, because we can see their online behavior. We know where they came from (geographically or traffic source), what they are looking at or clicking on our website, and whether or not they’ve completed our goals or KPIs (such as going through a checkout process and purchasing a product). With analytics, we are able to slice and dice our data to separate our customers based on their actions, demographics, and interests, and yet, most of the time, we are still serving them the exact same website experience. When asked, one of the common reasons I’ve heard this to be true is that it’s really hard to get data from an analytics tool to an optimization tool, and vice versa from
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The Education Series: Advocacy

I’ve written advocacy into my past three job descriptions. In fact, as an Analytics Advocate, it was my job. So what is advocacy and how can you get started with it? I’m sure there are many definitions of what advocacy can mean, but to me, it means this: Being present in market (via blogs, social media, conferences, etc) to share your best practices, thoughts and experiences on behalf of a practice, product, or field. Further, I think there is a responsibility built into advocacy to educate others about the topic you are advocating for, not just preach to them. I’ve spent the last 5+ years of my career advocating for data, analytics, and optimization best practices. At times, this was a “20% project” for me where I had a negotiated
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5 Tips to Getting More out of Google Optimize

Martijn Scheijbeler and I recently presented at MeasureCamp London (and he again at MeasureCamp Amsterdam) on our best practices and tips for getting more out of Google Optimize. The response was great, so we decided to pen these thoughts as a blog post to share more broadly.   Tip #1: Identify key segments of users to target  (Krista) One of the things that makes Optimize so powerful is it’s deep integration with Google Analytics. You can use your Google Analytics data to identify key segments of users to target users as audiences shared Optimize. Examples: Loyal customers: Been to your site X times and purchased Y instances/value Status groups: Premium frequent fliers, Economy standard fliers Geo-location: Special offer for San Antonio residents Once you’ve identified these key audiences, create a unique
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The Education Series: 5 Tips for Becoming a Public Speaker

This post is part of the Education Series, a series focused on learnings and tips for the softer skills of digital marketing, many of which come from my experiences over the past decade in this industry.    One of my first (large) public speaking engagements was in front of a crowd of about 300 young adults at a political networking event in Washington D.C. in the summer of 2007. I was running the event and was the Emcee + speaker for organization background and event purpose, prior to introducing our keynote for the evening (a US Congresswoman). My voice quivered uncontrollably, I turned bright red and felt faint as I stumbled my way through. Friends in the audience promised I didn’t sound nervous, but I never believed them. After a second
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The Education Series: Introduction

I’ve spent the past 2.5 years as Google’s Analytics Advocate (and unofficially filled part of this role for 2 years prior to that) focused on advocacy for our GA360 Suite products, including (but not limited to) product design, user feedback, training, troubleshooting, and education. This role has stretched my mind (and at times, my patience), given me the opportunity to engage with and learn from users all over the world, forced me to become a better writer, and provided opportunities to grown and scale Analytics Education more than I could have ever imagined. Breaking it down by a few stats of my time in this role, it *roughly* looks like this: ~100 speaking engagements & webinars, many of which were large conference keynotes all over the world 80-100 client and agency meetings 30 livestream/hangout
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Women in Analytics: Finding Allies

This past weekend I had the pleasure of participating in my first MeasureCamp event. This was actually my first un-conference, and even though I had a vague idea of how the day would go, I had no idea what to expect when it came to running a session. I had heard many things about strategizing to pick the best session slots (and avoiding the time slot Simo chooses), room layout, etc. Thankfully, MeasureCamp founder Peter O’Neill recommended a specific room to me after I described the setup/style I was after. I was also not sure which time slot to book, but I ended up grabbing session #3 which was right before lunch. I figured that this could either be a blessing or a curse, depending on how hungry people were.
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