0405123696 petra@web-data-analytics.com

In June 2019 I created a detailed course where you can access all my checklists that my team uses to set up Google Analytics. We are giving away access to this course entirely for free. I had my videos  transcribed and between them they have a word count of 36,000 words, so it essentially turned into a mini book. I have left it up to you whether you want to read the transcriptions or not. To read them, just expand the text under each of the videos.

If you are just wanting to watch the videos and don’t want to log into the course or use the checklists, then here is all the videos back to back as a helpful and thorough reference.

If you do log into the course (located at https://www.thequantifiedweb.com/exactGA) , you can access all the procedures as checklists and access several special offers only available to course participants.

Enjoy!

BONUS (If you don’t have Google Analytics yet): How to Create a Google Analytics Account and Add it To Your Website

If you’re brand new to Google Analytics, watch this video to get your account started, otherwise if Google Analytics is installed already you can skip it.



How to Open an Account in Google Analytics

In this lesson, I’ll show you how to find your Google Analytics account using the search field if you are working with multiple accounts. This lesson might not be relevant for you if you only have one account, so if that is your scenario then move onto the next lesson which is about the right way to set up views and why you need them. It is called How to Set Up Standard Views in Google Analytics.



How to Set Up Standard Views in Google Analytics

In this lesson, I’ll show you how to set up several different “standard” views. I put standard in quotes here, because they are standard in our process, but most people won’t have ever heard of these views. Most Google Analytics accounts only have the default view called All Web Site Data.

It is important to have a few different views because the default view is completely unfiltered. Filters are extremely helpful, and indeed necessary in some cases. Filters permanently change your Google Analytics data so you want to have them in their own view so that if you make a mistake or filter something out you can always refer back to the unfiltered one.

I actually like to have two filtered views, one with the full URL that someone sees when they view a page on your website, and one with the parameters stripped off the end. Parameters are little bits of code after a ? in your URL. Having these parameters can make a big mess of your SEO and reporting efforts, especially if you use Facebook for traffic or you are in ecommerce.



How to Add an Event Testing View in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll learn the value of having a dedicated view just for your own team to test events, and how to do this by creating an IP address filter. This filter prevents other users from being seen in the data for this view and so then you always know that you created the data when you are testing something out. It is really helpful when you are setting up E-commerce or testing events such as button clicks etc.



How to Configure Property Settings in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll learn how to check to make sure you’re not breaching the Google Terms of Service which could see you being restricted from Google Analytics. You’ll learn how to add Demographics and other advertising features such as Remarketing and Advertising Reporting Features. This is important if you want to set up remarketing to visitors to your website via Google Ads / YouTube.



How to Change the Session Duration in Google Analytics

In this lesson you’ll be learning about the session duration, and why you might want to update it.

The default session duration of 30 minutes is really not that helpful if you have users who are leaving your website and coming back, for example, if they need to complete a transaction on PayPal or another third party payment processor, or if they have to fill out forms such as is the case with Afterpay or Eventbrite. In all of these cases, a session will be broken in half when the user returns to the website if their total time from the beginning of the session was more than 30 minutes.

I find it helpful instead to maximise the session time out which prevents sessions from being split in half. If a person comes back via a referral that is not an excluded referrer it will still start a new session so there is very little, if any, downside to extending the session timeout.



How to Change the Data Retention Settings in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about the data retention settings, and why you might want to change them.

The Google Analytics Data Retention controls give you the ability to set the amount of time before user-level and event-level data stored by Google Analytics is automatically deleted from Google Analytics’ servers. This is especially important if you do not want to have your user and event data automatically deleted because Google Analytics now selects this option by default.

If you are not in Europe or targeting European clients we will set it to “Do not automatically expire”. If you are implementing GDPR you may want to apply different settings and so I will show you what the options are.



How to Change the Referral Exclusion List in Google Analytics

In this lesson you’ll be learning about the Referral Exclusion list, and why you should update it.

The Referral Exclusion list determines which domains will count as an external referral and which ones will be ignored (considered to be internal).

This is especially important if your online sales process or product offering spans more than one website or domain, uses an iframe to link third-party tools to your website, or uses payment processors like paypal.com which are hosted external to your main website.



How to Create a “Traffic Has Dropped” Alert in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to create an alert via email that lets you know if your traffic suddenly drops. We create a Traffic Has Dropped alert so that if anything goes wrong during your analytics setup you are notified promptly. This prevents you from losing data due to a small mistake.



How to Create an “Include Valid Hostname” Filter in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to add an Include Valid Hostname filter to your Filtered Views. This filter prevents spammers and malware from sending fake data to your account by using your Google Analytics ID.

It’s actually surprisingly easy to receive bogus data in Google Analytics – if your Google Analytics ID is added to someone else’s website due to either human error or malice, your Google Analytics data could be ruined, especially if invalid data is received in high volume.



How to Create an “Exclude Own Traffic” Filter in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to add a filter to your Filtered Views that excludes all of your own traffic. This filter prevents your own team from inadvertently triggering goals, events, and other conversions when they use your website.

We always add this filter when we are working on a clients account, as it also filters out our own testing activity from your Google Analytics data. It is our own way of keeping our muddy footprints away from your carpet 🙂



How to Add Lowercase and Crawler Spam Filters in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to create filters that set some fields in your Google Analytics to lowercase, and why you’d want to do this in the first place. This step is key to data integrity in Google Analytics as it prevents your page views from being assigned incorrectly.

We’ll also add filters that prevent crawler spam from reaching your Google Analytics. This crawler spam can create havoc in your Google Analytics accounts by making it look like their website is referring traffic to you. It often attacks you worse if you follow a link back to the spammer’s website. Unfortunately, there is no 100% definitive way of preventing crawler spam, but following this process will make it much less likely to happen to you because the known sites will be blocked from your primary views.



How to Create a “Remove All Parameters” Filter in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to create filters that clean up your website URLs in Google Analytics by removing all the bits and bobs of code that end up at the end of the URL. This step is really important to getting accurate pageview numbers in Google Analytics as it prevents your page views from being split up into thousands of different combinations.

Trust me your SEO team will thank you when you apply this filter!

This filter will also fix Facebook’s fbclid ID which is being appended to the end of your page URLs in Google Analytics and creating a big mess. This issue is impacting people worldwide as it is leading to Facebook views being separated from the rest of your page views, leading to incorrect pageview values when you try to see which pages are effective in engaging visitors on your website.



How to Create a “Remove Trailing Slashes” Filter in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to create filters that clean up your website URLs in Google Analytics by removing slashes from the end of the URL. This step is really important to getting accurate pageview numbers in Google Analytics as it prevents your page views from being split in half, as a slash at the end of a URL registers a separate number of pageviews from no slash. The crazy thing is many page builders add the slash sometimes which drives you crazy as then you don’t have consistency.

You’ll also see that when users come from Pinterest sometimes your URL will have a slash at the end and sometimes it won’t. It’s enough to send you completely bananas.

Trust me your SEO team will thank you when you apply this filter!



How to Apply Filters to Filtered Views in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to take filters you’ve already created in Google Analytics and then duplicate them to other filtered views, saving you time and effort. You’ll definitely want to do it this way if you have more than one filtered view in your Google Analytics account because it is quite cumbersome to add filters one at a time at the view level. You’ll need account-level access to do this.

It’s also a super quick lesson!



How to Assign the Filter Order in Google Analytics

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to rearrange the order of your filters in Google Analytics, because there are some filters that only work if you have them in a certain order. Out of order, they might do something unpredictable, particularly the Search and Replace filters. If you’re adding advanced filters in Google Analytics, do make sure you watch this video!



How to Check Your Destination Goals are Working

In earlier lessons, I taught you how to create various filters for Google Analytics to reduce spam and abnormalities and make your page view counts accurate. The problem with adding pageview filters is that if you have any hardcoded URLs in your goals settings, these filters might break your goals.

In this lesson, you’ll be learning about how to find these goal settings in Google Analytics and then update them so that you can be confident they are accurate and that your goals will keep working after you add new filters and settings.



How to Copy Goals to Another View in Google Analytics

Once you start to add goals to your Google Analytics account, you can sometimes find that you have 5, 10, 15 even 20 different goals! If you’ve been following along with this course we’ve asked you to add a few extra goals, and a few extra views as well. The last thing you want is a cumbersome process for copying all those goals around, so luckily Google Analytics has supplied us with a method for copying them across views.

Now this process is not entirely intuitive (I think their UI could really improve in this area!) so do follow along with the videos to see how to do it yourself, otherwise, you might get stuck trying to work it out on your own.



How to Convert Parameters to Custom Dimensions in Google Analytics

This lesson is more relevant for businesses who have Ecommerce on their websites because they are more likely to have relevant data on the URL that would benefit from being turned into a custom dimension.

Basically, in this lesson, you’ll learn how to find the extra information on the URL that your website uses to talk to itself and store it in a more helpful place in Google Analytics. So for example, if you have fields on your website that sort products by an order, say price or product name, you might have a parameter orderby=price in your URL. Each of these different parameters breaks your pageview data because it changes the name of the page by adding all the extra data at the end.

In this lesson, I’ll teach you how to take the data off the URL and store it in another field called a custom dimension. This way you can finally see how many people visited each page on your website and where they came from. Your SEO team will be thankful!



How to Configure Custom Channels in Google Analytics

The Channels report is a lot more useful than Source / Medium or Source in my opinion because it’s higher level rather than being too deep in the weeds. Source / Medium can be really frustrating to use because of the level of detail. Your marketing team may even customize the Source / Medium when they use third-party tools to upload content. When this happens you end up with Facebook, facebook, facebook.com, m.facebook.com and lm.facebook.com in your Source / Medium report. These are all treated as different sources unless you combine them all in one place. All of this leads to just way too much detail to be useful. Channels are the best way to pull all the related Source / Mediums under one label that can be used for your reports.

The channels that come out of the box with Google Analytics take a high-level perspective, but sometimes you need just a bit more detail. If you’re a heavy user of social media, for example, its helpful to compare Facebook results directly against your Google Ads results, but unfortunately the default channels just lump all Social Media together and all Paid Search together. The best way to separate them out into traffic sources that are highly relevant for your business is to create custom acquisition channels. These are basically labels that you give to the primary ways that you bring in traffic so that you can compare them to each other.

Unfortunately, even though custom channels are incredibly useful and I always set them up for any clients I work with, they’re not the simplest thing to set up. With this video you will learn our templated way of doing it, otherwise, you might get stuck trying to work it out on your own.



Test Remove Trailing Slashes Filter and Remove All Params Filter

In this lesson you will learn how to test these key filters have been applied correctly.

Test Goals

In this lesson you will learn how to test your Goals have been updated correctly after making changes to your account.

Test Custom Channels

In this lesson you will learn how to test your Custom Channels have been set up correctly.

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SleepWise Clinic

Petra was instrumental in pulling all our clinic's web analytics into one easy to read, dynamic report that's accessible to me at any time, and works with our EXACT booking system.

This has allowed me to see, at a glance, what marketing initiatives are working, need tweaking, or changing altogether, saving me both time and money. I can't recommend her or her analytic services enough.

Ian Gale SleepWise Clinic Strategy Session August 1, 2018

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