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  • 8 Great Tools to use with Google Analytics

    We hear so much about great SEO tools that we should be using, but we rarely see much written about tools to help you with your Google Analytics data. Over the past year I have been using more and more tools to help with Google Analytics data, from API extraction to data visualisation, and I wanted to share them with you. Below are just 8 tools that I used for Google Analytics on a regular basis that save me a lot of time.

    ScreamingFrog

    Who has come across GA traffic disappearing and it being down to some GA code being removed? How long has that taken you to find the pages that no longer has the GA code on?

    Over the past few years I have been using ScreamingFrog to check websites for any pages that have missing Google Analytics code, and comparing it against those that have. Once I have a list of URLs with missing GA code, I supply this to the internal team to have them look at it and implement. Once implemented, I then re-run the crawl to ensure the missing pages now have the GA code.

    Running a ScreamingFrog report to look for Google Analytics code is very easy and can be done in six steps:

    1. Open ScreamingFrog ;)
    2. Enter the URL in the search bar
    3. Navigate to Configuration > Custom
    4. Filter 1 “contains” > UA Code.
    5. Filter 2 “does not contain” > UA Code (As shown Below)
    6. Hit OK, and then start the crawl.

    Once the report has run you will find a list of URLs within the Custom tag, for both pages with and without GA code on them. Export the list of URLs without the Google Analytics code and send them to the developer.

    Get ScreamingFrog here.

    GA Copy and Paste

    The GA Copy and Paste plugin has saved me so much time over the months, where I have had to replicate features or settings across a number of different accounts and profiles. The handy GA Copy and Paste Chrome plugin does exactly what it says on the tin. You navigate to your filter/goal and press the plugin button in the address bar, and press copy. You then create a new filter/goal, press the plugin button again followed by the paste button, and voila! Your filter/goal has been copied across effortlessly.

    GA Copy & Paste

    As I have already mentioned, this saves me a lot of time, and hopefully it will do the same for you. Get GA Copy and Paste here.

    CustomReportSharing.com

    Using Segments, custom dashboards and reports is becoming the norm in everyday online marketing. Diving deep into the data to get a more granular view on your marketing activities allows you and the business to make much better decisions. The huge advantage Google Analytics has is the ability to share those features with your colleagues and peers. Now it is even easier to find some great information thanks to those over at CustomReportSharing.com.

    Whether you are looking for an eCommerce custom report, or you are looking to start an SEO Dashboard, CustomReportSharing.com has it all. You simply search the forums for the dashboard you are looking for and add it to your account. Some of the features have been provided by some of the brightest minds in the Analytics field, so you can always guarantee quality. You can also upload your own report, segment or dashboard by signing up. Hopefully I will see a few of you over there in the near future.

    Check out CustomReportSharing.com here

    GA Debugger – Firefox/Chrome

    The GA Debugger extension is great for looking at useful information about your GA installation, providing any error or warning messages direct into your JavaScript console. This can be easily located either by selecting Inspect Element and choosing Console in Chrome, or opening Firebug and navigating to the Console in Firefox. I tend to use this tool when checking to ensure correct set-up and that any cookies are being passed correctly.

    Get GA Debugger here.

    URL builder

    We tend to be involved in creating campaigns on a regular basis, with each one needing to be tracked. Whether it is PPC, Display Ads, Media Campaigns or you are tracking traffic generated by your outreach team having an understanding of where your visits come from is essential. For those who are working with single URLs, Google has provided a very simple tool that allows you to add the data that you require for it to generate the required string here.

    However, in most cases you would want to create multiple tags in one go, and be able to keep a track of those for future reference. We were conducting a lot of campaigns, and to make things easier I decided to create a spreadsheet that emulated the Google URL Builder. This allowed us to create hundreds of campaign tags very quickly and easily. This has saved me lots of time in the past and I hope it will do the same for you.

    Google URL Builder
    Daniel’s Campaign Builder Spreadsheet – Please make a copy.

    Table Booster

    The Table Booster Chrome plugin is a great way to further enhance your view of the data grid within Google Analytics by providing three different visualisations for every column.

    Download Table Booster here

    SEO Tools for Excel

    For those of you who haven’t heard about SEO Tools for Excel, where have you been? You need to go and download it right now, well, after you have finished reading this post. SEO Tools for Excel is great for lots of different SEO jobs, and has automated a lot of processes that we do; however, one part I feel is not used as much as it should is the Google Analytics integration.

    The integration allows you to run reports straight from the Google Analytics API (similar to the magic script) into your spreadsheet with no coding required. Once you have set up the report and you have all the data that you need, it becomes purely a case of adding the data into a format that works for you as a business or your client.

    Get SEO for Excel here.

    Chartelligence

    This Chrome plugin has been great. Similar to Panguin, it overlays in your Google Analytics account and provides the dates for the latest Google algorithms to easily identify whether you have been hit by a penalty.

    Another awesome feature that Chartelligence has is the ability to upload your own holidays, events and site alterations so that you can see what has affected your website during different periods of the year. Over the past few months, I have been using this plugin more and more, and I feel that you should be to.

    Get Chartelligence here.

    So that’s it – these are some of the tools I use regularly when looking into Google Analytics. What tools, plugins or extensions do you use to enhance Google Analytics? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below or on Twitter @danielbianchini.

    Thanks to Dan Barker, Anna Lewis, Charlie Williams and Bridget Randolph for their contributions.

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    ABOUT THE AUTHOR
    Daniel Bianchini is the Director of Services at White.net, a creative digital marketing agency based in Oxford. When Daniel isn’t talking about digital marketing, he can be found in the gym or discussing football with friends.

    9 Responses to “8 Great Tools to use with Google Analytics”

    1. Really good share. Some great tools here and (god knows where I have been) I hold my hands up…. I have never used the Excel plugin. I will now though!

    2. Let me recommend 2 tools and 1 more article. I’m the author of two of these, but I think they fit well with the article’s purpose.
      - gaevolution.appspot.com : Let’s you pull GA data for multiple profiles at the same time and also do quick comparisons across profiles/accounts/segments, etc…

      - Excellent Analytics : This is my favorite GA for Excel plugin. It’s free, fast and easy to use. excellentanalytics.com

      - How to Measure ROI for Lead-Gen Websites. This is a recent article I wrote explaining how to scrape the GA cookie (seems to still work with UA as well) and pass that campaign and landing page information on to your CRM for tying offline sales back to leads that come from your website down to the keyword level.
      http://www.seomoz.org/ugc/how-to-measure-roi-for-leadgen-websites

      • Hi Michael,

        Thanks for the extra suggestions. I really like Excellent Analytics but SEO Tools for Excel does the same job and has a few extra features that I use regularly, so I am afraid it trumps it. I will definitely have a look at the others though.

        Dan

    3. Anna Lewis says:

      Hey Dan, thanks for including my suggestions, I’ve just thought of another crucial tool that’s been missed – before you learn the GA code yourself using http://gaconfig.com/ is fantastic! Just pop in what you want to track and hey presto there’s the code.

    4. Tecmoz says:

      Hi Daniel
      Thanks for informing me about these 8 great tools. Really, all these tools are very valuable and good from SEO prospective.

    5. I really like the look of the SEO Tools for Excel plugin… I can’t believe I have never come across it before, I use Excel for most of our campaign tracking @ GuestPostHQ.com. It’s downloading now and I look forward to putting it to use.

      Good post, great resources! Thanks.

    6. Rainer says:

      GA Copy and Paste does not seem to work with the newest version of GA.
      Is there any replacement?

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