Updates: December 2012

by Tim Leighton-Boyce

I know what a pain it is having to jump from post to post to get the current version of a piece of advice or a technique.

So when something on this blog is out of date I try to update the original article instead of writing a new one. Sometimes it’s hard to keep up with all the changes in Google Analytics.

I also try to add new external resources when I can.

The down-side of this is that my posts get longer and longer. And they’re probably too long to start with!

But here’s a list of the last changes, all in one place.

Picture of Voice of customer survey word cloudVoice of Customer Surveys: I’ve added some recent data which shows just how big the difference in response rate is between a customer-initiated “Please take our survey” link and an embedded form.

Example of google checkout abandon rates by stage combined in one chartGoogle Analytics Checkout Abandon Rates: How to use Google Documents with the GA API to show all the individual stage-by-stage abandon rates in one chart and with the same Y axis. This is more complicated than using a Custom Dashboard, but is much better for making comparisons.

Traffic attribution pie chart with question markTracking social media and the ‘direct’ black hole: Trying to track untagged ‘organic/natural’ social referrals? The data that never was. I’m almost as obsessed by the ‘direct’ problem as I am by customer surveys. (I’ll leave the ‘not provided’ disappearing data fiasco for others.) Plenty of updates at the end of my original post.

Screen shot of Classic Facebook error messageTracking Error Messages in GA: More discussion on the pros and cons of Events versus Virtual Pageviews and new resources on the ‘Events’ approach. How you do it is not the point. The benefit is in doing it. Tracking error messages is a shortcut to improving the usability of your site.

Configuration setting for raw Google Analytics profileWhy you need more than one profile in Google Analytics: I used to say 2, now I’m saying at least 3. A short and sweet lesson from the march of time. One day you will need a spare. I learnt the hard way.

Screenshot: SEO Keyword Grouping GA Multi Channel FunnelsCustom Channel Groupings in Multi-channel-funnels: Advice about checking the standard channel groupings in MCF and then customising them. Time spent getting familiar with these features and the interface will be rewarded even more in the future as these aspects become more important in GA and Universal Analytics.

Wordcloud showing brand keywordsWorking with Brand Keywords and other Filtering Fun: The resources section at the bottom of this post is growing steadily. Interesting ideas for categorisation from L3 Analytics and a great regex resource from Brian Clifton.

Photo of edible Google Analytics CookiesEU Cookie Law: The ‘updates’ section at the end of this post is an extremely long one. I’ve tried to add links to the best of the articles and discussions on the subject as they appeared.

How to add an extra inline filter metric in Google AnalyticsFind the data which matters, even without weighted sort: The update explains how the introduction of GA ‘Weighted Sort’ made this technique obsolete. But since then weighted sort has turned out to be a bit elusive. So the old threshold filter can still come in handy.

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