Archive for January, 2011

Jan 13

Just recently, one of our clients asked me to share with their analysts a number of custom segments and custom reports that I’ve created for them. With the new “Share” segment button, it was very easy to share the URL of the segments/report and email them to the client.

When the analysts clicked on the segments’ URLs, they imported the report structure exactly as it was configured under my login. But when they saved the segments under their login, the segments were saved under wrong profiles!

Why to share segments?
First of all we need to know that Advanced Segments and custom reports in Google Analytics are tied to the user login and not to the account/profile under which these segments are created in. So if two users have access to the same profile but they are using different login to access the GA account, the segments created by user A are not accessible to user B unless they are manually shared by user A. So, all the amazing segments and custom reports that E-Nor creates under their Google Analytics login will not be visible to their clients who are using a different login credential, even though both E-Nor and their clients are logged into the same GA account.

What went wrong with the segments I shared with our client?
When our client’s analysts clicked on the shared segment’s URL, the segment showed up by default under the first profile of the first account that the login of each user has access to. Because the relevant profile applicable to the segment was not the first profile in their accounts list, they failed to add the segment to the right profile and when they later logged in they were unable to allocate the segment under the given profile.


The “share” functionality in the Advance Segment and Custom Report is good as long as the recipient of the shared segment applies the segment to the right profile using the “Visible in” menu (See point# 6 of this post). But if you want to make the life of the recipient much easier then follow the simple solution provided below.


After looking at the Segment link and other GA reports links, I noticed that if we add the Profile ID to the link URL as parameter, then the segment will be populated under the right account and the right profile. So the solution is simply to attach the profile ID with the segment link :)


Let me translate the above solution to 5 simple steps to follow:

1. How can I get the profile id?

Google Analytics assign a unique ID for each profile. This profile ID is different than the account ID [UA-123456-1], which we add to the website pages along with the JavaScript pixel. In order to find the Profile ID, just log in to Google Analytics and locate the account and the profile under which you created the “Advanced Segment”. Click on Analytics Settings > Edit, and the Profile ID will be in the upper left corner of the profile settings page.

2. How to create advanced segments and custom reports?
This is not the focus of this blog post, nevertheless, to learn how to create your own advanced segment read the following help topics:

3. How to get the custom segment Link?

Click Share for the relevant segment or report. [Go to Advanced Segments > Manage your advanced segments > Share > Copy the URL]

4. How to add the profile ID that I got from step# 1 to the segment Link URL that I got from step# 2?
Very simple! Just append the Profile ID [ex. id=18900120] to the end of the segment link URL

5. What is next?

Send the enhanced segment link to anyone who has access to the Google Analytics account. When the recipient clicks the link, a template of your advanced segment or custom report loads under the correct account and correct profile.

6. What if I receive a segment link that doesn’t contain the profile ID?

Well, then you need to manually apply the segment to the desired profile.
At the bottom of the segment page, use the “Visible in” menu to select the profile(s) where you want the segment to be available.

Happy Analysis :)

Jan 10

I have recently guest-authored a series of posts on mobile analytics strategy on the Google Analytics blog. Each of the three posts highlights simple yet key steps for marketers to track their mobile traffic and improve their returns.

For those of you on the go, here’s a quick glance at the material I covered.  Try to make time to read each post in-depth, even if you have to read it on your smart phone!


1 – Look for Mobile Trends

In the first post, I detail how to monitor and analyze mobile traffic using key performance indicators. This is best done by customizing your GA settings to receive mobile traffic reports, custom alerts, and for the enthusiast, using the Google Analytics data export API.

2 – Give Your Reports More Dollar Power

So you’re mobile trends are positive, do you just throw the data to your boss? No. You always want to give your reports more dollar power. The second post centers on the power of presentation. If you’re CEO can easily connect the dots, two bottoms will be covered — your company’s and yours! :)

3 – Act on Your ROI

The average analytics guy will stop at step 2, but the third post encourages you to do more. Additional segmentation and leveraging  AdWords’ reports will allow you the much needed visibility into campaign performance to maximize your results.


And There’s More!

For tor the technically inclined, and to get a more comprehensive perspective on your mobile presence, there is more you can do. Check out the code site page on mobile to:

  • Track native iPhone or Android applications
  • Track activities on websites from low-end mobile devices

And be on the lookout for  niche analytics solutions specifically built for mobile.

Remember, it’s never too late to start maximizing your company’s mobile investment and implementation. Be sure to check out each post for more details and practical tips.

For more analytics tips and insights, follow @ferasa on twitter.  Happy analyzing!