Personal Tools and Assets

Wed, 06/28/2017 - 16:40

Hidden in the Admin area of Google Analytics, you will see a section under Views for Personal Tools & Assets. These features and reasons for exploring them area defined below.

Getting to Know Personal Tools and Assets in Google AnalyticsSegments: If you are not already familiar with segments, please read a previous post about how to use them. You can access them from the regular Reporting view, and they are also stored here in the Admin area of your account.

Annotations: I describe these as “post-it notes” in your account. You can highlight a date in your account when a significant offline event occurred. It could be after you presented to a large in-person audience or distributed a print mailing.  It’s useful for any time-specific event that may influence website behavior. These too are accessible from the reporting section under graphs as seen below or in this Admin area.

Attribution Models:  An attribution model determines how much credit each channel gets for conversions. There are a number of models already built-in to Google Analytics but you might want to create your own when you have a unique perspective on how your channels will work together. You create your model by first deciding which baseline model you want to use as your foundation: First Interaction, Last Interactions, Linear, Time Decay or Position Based. Once this is selected, you decide which rules to apply, such as the percentage of the credit you want to give to each interaction. It is confusing initially, so take advantage of the Import from Gallery option to import custom attribution models created by other users.

Custom Channel Groupings (Beta): The default channels are viewed in your Traffic Sources and include direct, organic, social, email, paid and display. For many people, that’s enough. However, you can drill into that data by creating channel groupings based on traffic source, medium, or campaign, as well as landing pages or AdWords parameters. Let’s say you are promoting a new product line on two specific channels, such as LinkedIn and Facebook. You can create a grouping called New Product, include both of those social sources with a regular expression of linkedin|facebook and include the landing page URL for the New Product page. That way, you are segmenting out your social media data for this New Product campaign.

Custom Alerts: If you are not logging into your Google Analytics account regularly, you can set up alerts to be notified when a significant event occurs on your website. An alert I recommend for everyone is “Traffic = 0”.  In other words, it notifies you if your website is not tracking any website visitors to your site. Sometimes tracking code may break when there is a site redesign or glitch with your site. This notifies you the day it happens so you can get it corrected quickly. You may also want to know when there is a significant decrease in traffic (you have a problem) versus an increase (your new campaign is doing well). You can choose a percentage (such as a 50% change) to trigger that notification.

Scheduled Emails: Like Custom Alerts, this feature is helpful for people who do not log in to Google Analytics regularly. They can receive reports weekly or monthly with key data.  If users no longer want to receive a report, you can go to the Admin section, and delete those email subscriptions.

Getting to Know Personal Tools and Assets in Google Analytics


Shortcuts: What if you log in regularly but don’t want to constantly drill into your data with secondary dimensions and in-line filters? Once you have a view of your data in Reporting that meets your needs, you can choose the option to “Add Shortcut” which makes it available under Dashboards the next time you log in.

Share Assets: This final option lets you share the configuration of the different customizations you created in the account. It does not share any of your account data. Instead, it shares the skeleton, making it easy for others to benefit from your work.

These different features are found throughout your Google Analytics account in the Reporting screen, which is where users spend most of their time. However, this is a central place in Google Analytics for viewing the different customizations you have made.