This is the second lesson video from my course The Exact Process For Setting Up Google Analytics – https://www.thequantifiedweb.com/exactga.
I decided to post the videos from the lessons publicly, but I encourage you to log into the course because from within the course you can access the written notes and the checklists, plus access my special offer. The course is completely free to register 🙂
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.
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Welcome to Lesson Two about the Exact Process for setting up Google Analytics where we’re going to go through the exact steps that my agency walks through when we set up your Google Analytics. So if you come to this website, it’s www.thequantifiedweb.com/exactga, just put in your email address here and click on Get Started Today.
Now, you want to click through into Set up Standard Views. This is the second lesson. let me just explain what we’re doing here. So when you have a Google Analytics account, we’ve already gone through that you have an account, a property and then you have views. Now, the views let you separate different ways of seeing the information based on different filters that you might have set up. So filters enable you to remove information out of your Google Analytics or change it in a way that makes it more easily read by you.
Now, there are several views that we set up as standard and I’ll explain why. So first I’ll just walk through with ours. So we have a Filtered View with No Params, a Filtered View with Params and an Unfiltered View and there’s one that I haven’t got in here which is a Testing View. We add the Testing View if we add events that we need to test in your Google Analytics. We don’t usually set up the testing View here though unless we know that we’re going to be testing events.
And let me just explain what these three things are. Now, so we’ve got two things here relating to parameters and you might be wondering what these parameters actually are. Now, I don’t know if you’ve ever seen it but I’m just going to show you an example. If you put a question mark on the end of your URL on your page, you might have some historical pages come up. So this is an example here.
So a parameter is when you have a key-value pair in the URL. The purpose of this is to tell your website some information that makes the website work. So, this particular one is there is some key here which is telling the website something and then this is the information that’s sending it.
Now as you can see, this isn’t really human readable. It doesn’t really make a lot of sense to a majority of people. The other thing that you might not realize looking at this is that if this information is showing up on your page name then what this is going to do is every time this value changes, you’re going to have a different page view listed on Google Analytics. And then when you come to do your SEO or come to see which pages are ranking etcetera, it won’t work because you’d be having one page view for every page that someone goes to instead of having all of those page views grouped based on the actual page name. So it’s very important to strip out the parameters in at least one view so that you can have accurate page names. So this Filtered View with No Params, this ultimately ends up being the one that we use for setting up reports.
Alright, so let’s walk through the actual lesson and go through how we actually do it.
Alright, so we go to the Admin Page now. I’m already in Admin but I’m just going to do it here. So we click on this Admin button and then we want to find the current primary Property. Now, this particular client only has one property but some, if this is your account or if you’re working on a client account, there might be more than one property. So for this procedure just click on the one which is their primary property.
You might have to repeat the steps again for others — we’re just going to go through the first one. Then we want to find the primary View. Now in this — in 99% of all cases, you’ll have a view called All Website Data because that is what it looks like when Google Analytics sets it up. But in your case, it might have different view names – that’s fine as well. In this particular case, we have an All Website Data view. If the account has more than one view, pick the one that is the primary one that you’re going to be using most of the time.
Alrighty, so I just got a note here that if they’ve got more than one then just check with the person who’s designed the analytics plan. So that’s part of our internal procedures. So with this lesson, you are actually seeing the exact procedures that my team use. So you will see references to things like this which are internal to our business. We have literally sucked in our business procedures and put it in this lesson for you.
Alright, so what we want to do is click on View Settings. So that’s this button here. Now, what we’re going to do is rename this view to Filtered Data No Params which is the name of the view. This one’s going to become the new reporting view and we want to use the primary one as the reporting view because this one has all the historical data in it. We’re actually going to create some new views which will be Unfiltered Data which is similar to what it is now but we don’t want to turn this one into the Unfiltered Data view because we want the reports to have all of the historical data in them.
Alrighty, so the next thing we want to do is check whether the URL written in the website URL setting is correct. Alrighty, so you’ll see here we’ve got the protocol for the URL and then we’ve got the actual hostname. So what we’d do is, we actually open in another tab now. I’m just going to do it on a different screen. What we want to do is make sure the protocol and the domain are actually correct. Now, in this case, it was incorrect, so I need to change it to https and the actual website does not have a www in front of it.
Alrighty, next up you need to make sure the timezone – country and territory – is matching the client’s time zone. Alright, so I can see that this one is so that is fine. Next, you want to check what the currency is displayed as. So it needs to match the currency displayed on the website. And if there’s no currency displayed on the website then you’d want to — well, first of all, some websites don’t actually have revenue in them – so you would just want to make it the standard currency of the country they’re in.
But let’s say they were located in Australia or Britain then you want to be checking whether the currency on the website is in US Dollars (USD) or here in local dollars so Australian Dollars (AUD) or you know, what are you using in Britain? Are you using Pounds again or are you using Euros? I’m not sure. That was just an example. I probably shouldn’t use an example of things that I don’t know. Alright, anyway, so — oh, there you go, British Pound on there alright.
So the next thing we want to do is Check the Bot Filtering setting. So we want to put a tick in Exclude all hits from known bots and spiders. So this is where if Google knows that a bot is a bot. So let’s say for example there’s a — like for example, they know about their own colours, so if they know that it’s a colour, they know it’s a bot, there’s no point in counting that as legitimate traffic. So just exclude that straight off the bat.
Alrighty, and then we want to Add on-site search if they actually have an on-site search. So what you want to do is go to the client website and see if there is a search box on there. Now, I am now going to open the client’s website so I’m just going to quickly check if there’s a search box. Alright, I found one. So what I’ve done, so I’ve found a search box on the website and what I’m going to do is just click Search and what you need to do is find out what the actual URL looks like when you do a search.
So this is what the URL looks like. You’ll see it says search and there’s a question mark and then it will have type equals product and then it will have q equals this, I searched for this. I searched for this random terms. So we’ve got q equals — so what we’re trying to find out is what is the letter before the random thing that we just put in and in this case, it’s “q.” So that means the search parameter is “q”. So what we can do is we can turn on Site Search Tracking and we put “q” in as the Query parameter. And we’re not going to worry about stripping the query parameters out of the URL because we’re going to do that later anyway. Alright, oh actually, that’s alright I have got that ticked. So we will do it, we’ll follow the procedure. Alrighty, and then we want to save that.
Alright, now the next thing we want to do is Create an Unfiltered view. So if in your case you had additional views. Step one, then there’s going to be a different step to follow here. But in my case, I didn’t have any additional views on this one so I’m going to move on. But let’s just go through what we would do. So if we did see additional views, then we want to check if there’s one that’s already called Raw Data, Unfiltered Data, or All Website Data. If All Website Data wasn’t the primary one that we’ve already changed. Alright, so just to make that clear. If you only had an All Website Data then we would have already used that and we’ve just changed the name. But if you have one that’s still left over that is called one of these things then we can rename that one to Unfiltered. But if you didn’t have any other views, we’re just going to create a new one.
So what we’ll do to create a new one is go into analytics and — so we’ve already saved that. We are going to click on Copy view. Alright, and we want to name it Unfiltered Data. It’s because we’re creating an Unfiltered data view. Alright, then we click on this copy view button. Let me right on skip ahead, let me just check this well up too.
Alright, then we want to Open the View Settings again for the new view. Alright, so we’re in the new view now. Alrighty, now we want to copy this one another time because we’re going to create one called Filtered Data with Params. So let me click Copy view and let’s just change the name of that — oh good it actually copied it out of there, I wasn’t sure because it’s iFramed in. Alright, and then click Copy view.
Alright, now just to keep everybody aware of what you’re doing. If you are doing this for somebody else then it’s useful at this point to Create an Annotation. So an annotation is a little like putting a message on the account to say, “Hey, I’ve just made some changes.” Creating views is you know fairly significant change so when you make significant changes it’s worthy to make an annotation.
So then we click on New Annotation and I’m going to add this: Added new views and filters. So we’re being very specific in terms of our procedure so that everyone is set up exactly the same. We set the visibility to Shared and the Create Annotation. Alright now, this annotation is made on a per view basis so it’s just made in the Filtered Data with Params view so we’ll just go ahead and create the same annotation in the others.
Alrighty, well that’s the end of this procedure. In the next procedure, let me see what we’re going to go through, give me one moment. Alright, actually in the next procedure we’re going to go through Adding an Event Testing view as well. So we’re going to make the assumption that we will be testing events by creating an event testing view.
Alrighty, well I hope that was helpful and follow through in your own account and then come and look at the next lesson.
In the next lesson, I’ll show you how to also add a testing view just for your own IP address, or for a few members of your team. Look out for it, its called How to Add an Event Testing View in Google Analytics.