Although Google often updates its Google Analytics product with the odd tweak or additional feature every now and again, the latest version update is quite a hefty revision.
It’s been over 4 years since they last really updated the interface although they have introduced a number of features such as advanced segments, event tracking and in-page analytics to name just a few.
Google have therefore decided that an overhaul of the interface is now needed to make it easier and faster for users to get the data they want.
Google are gradually rolling out the latest version, so for those of you who have not yet had a chance to play, here are 5 key changes that have been made:
It is now possible to customise multiple dashboards for a profile. This will allow users to segment the charts and tables making analysis and management easier.
On top of allowing multiple dashboards, in the latest version, charts and tables can be added to the dashboard using a widget editor.
The widget allows the user to add either a metric, pie chart, timeline or table for pretty much every dimension/metric possible.
Google says that there is more to come in terms of features for the dashboard but wanted to release the core functions first.
These two additions are brilliant, it really will increase the use of the dashboard by users. Instead of having to apply advanced segments and custom reports in the old version to actually view the data you want to see, you’ll be able to view most of the data quickly in the dashboard instead.
For those who are very familiar with how to navigate around Google Analytics, this change wont be that significant, but for lighter users the new navigation makes it easier to understand where reports can be found.
Taking a look at just the visitors section, the new navigation now categorises the reports by demographics, behaviour and technology, which is a marked improvement on the old categorisation.
The layout of the reports has also had an overhaul. The data tables have been cleaned up which makes for easier analysis. Also, the function to add a filter is now located below the graph rather than the foot of the page.
Reports can be more effortlessly viewed too by tabbing through the viewing options at the top of each table, without the need to go back to the left handside navigation.
The fifth change is that it is possible to have events as goals – a function that is long overdue. Previously you could only set up goals based on
• a URL being accessed
• a certain number of pages being viewed
• a certain amount of time spent on the site
By allowing events to be set as goals, instances like videos being played or widgets being used will be able to have goal values attributed to them, which will allow for better analysis.
These are just five of the changes made, and there are many further changes including large changes to the custom reports section, which probably deserves a blog all to itself. The new interface is being gradually released to users, so do look out for the text link that appears at the top of the page when you next login.
What do you think of the new interface and what do you like/dislike?
If you want to learn more about Google Analytics we have some great online marketing training courses, so if you’d benefit from knowing more about all the features mentioned in this blog and many more, then please get in touch!