The new interface of Google Analytics has been live for a few months now and we have discovered some great features that weren’t heavily promoted in the initial excitement.
These “hidden gems” have been right under your nose, providing brand new information on your data or perhaps just a new way of looking at the same old numbers. Here are some of our favorite innovations:
1. Filter further with new advanced keyword search
The ‘Advanced Filter’ option for organic keywords has always been a plus, but the new Google Analytics provides many more variables by which you can search.
We like the new added ability to search by a variety of ecommerce results – did the visitors arriving via these keywords end up purchasing? How much did they spend? What was their resultant Per Visit Value? This is a great tool you can use to explore your organic traffic.
2. Term clouds
Google Analytics also has a new feature that combines both the visual aspect of data with the ability to sift through keywords rapidly: term clouds. While you may be familiar with term clouds from their use on blogs and other pages with use of multiple dynamic tags, they are now integrated into Google Analytics for easy viewing of both your paid and organic keywords.
To access them, simply go to any page that deals with keywords, and click on the small grid (meaning “Data” – the default setting) next to “View:” on the search bar. Select “Term Cloud” from the drop-down menu, and you’ll be able to see your top-searched keywords*, based on size.
[*Note: high incidences of the ‘(not provided)’ keyword driving traffic are due to Google’s recent decision not to reveal the specific keywords searched by users who are logged in to their Google Accounts. Instead, these keywords appear simply as ‘(not provided)’].
Term clouds are helpful because they allow you to view data in whatever way works best for you. Think about it this way: would you rather read a dense document or scan easy-to-interpret images? The vast majority would likely opt for images. Luckily, Google Analytics has now adjusted their platform to meet this need. And if you’d rather read the data in a table or percentage format, that’s fine, too. The new Google Analytics can be as flexible as you want it to be!
3. Social finds its niche
With the meteoric rise in influence and traffic coming from social sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, it’s no wonder that Google felt the need to call attention this traffic segment.
Instead of forcing you to dig through referral traffic, the new Analytics interface has an entire Social drop-down menu under “Audience”. Simply click on this, and you’ll be further prompted to explore “Engagement,” “Action,” or “Pages”. This allows you to get at important social audience information without having to hunt for it.
Changes made to Google Analytics have been both good and bad, but one thing’s for sure: there’ve been a lot of them. It’s doubtful that individual marketers have had time to weed through them all, and we’re sure you’ve found some we’ve overlooked, and vice versa. Got any new favorite features? Feel free to share them in the comments!