Google Analytics Upgrade, an Early Review

Posted in Analytics, Google, Tracking

Today in a client meeting I logged into a Google Analytics account to discuss their site metrics and I was greeted to an unexpected wow-surprise. (I think I might have actually said “wow” 4 times.) The Google Analytics interface has been completely made over. This is the second time in 24 hours I’ve said yippy skippy about a Google product. Last night got my first taste of iGoogle. Later in this post I will highlight new features, pass along Google’s “help” resources, and share my first impressions of the upgrade. Anyway here is what Google Analytics V2 looks like:

google-analytics

Several hours after the Google Analytics change over occurred I received an email from Google announcing the upgrade. Umm, it would have been nice to receive it before I was forced to navigate the interface in front of a client! Read on for a summary of new Google Analytics features:

Email and export reports
Schedule or send ad-hoc personalized report emails and export reports in PDF format.

Custom Dashboard
No more digging through reports. Put all the information you need on a custom dashboard that you can email to others.

Trend and Over-time Graph
Compare time periods and select date ranges without losing sight of long term trends.

Contextual help tips
Context sensitive Help and Conversion University tips are available from every report.

I’ve been paging through one of our site’s metrics in the new Google Analytics now for a couple of hours. The interface is simple, elegant, and I see immediate improvements in defining goal funnels and the ability to cross segment different types of analytic data. This package seems like it will be very easy for the average non-tech person to use. The timeline allows you to toggle between views of visits, page views pages/visits, average time on site, bounce rate OR percentage of new visitors.

Still a Free Tool
New users will begin working with the new interface nearly immediately. It takes Google Analytics in the direction conceptually of packages like ClickTracks but does not seem nearly as deep in cross segmenting. At first gape the package still seems relatively bare bones but still (like Google Analytics Classic) is an extremely deep tool for free. One might say it is revolutionary at it’s price point.

The new interface offers the same analytic data as we’re used to and links within report data offer new views and opportunities to analyze data. Here are some resources Google has announced to help webmasters deal with the upgrade:

Report Finder Tool will help you see where data from the previous interface is located within the new version (it is also linked to from within your reports on the left navigation menu).

Product tour

FAQs for more details about the the version.

Help Center includes articles related to the new version.

Analytics Help Forum in English within Google Groups to discuss the new version or get tips from experienced users.

  • Lyndon Antcliff

    I like the idea of Trend and Over-time Graph, have not checked it out. I use a variety of analytics and use Google for the long time stuff.

    I think Google has too many whistles and bells, I just want the meant. I remember using the old version of Urchin, which Google bought and then ruined.

    I still do not know my way around google and find the descriptions of functions daft.

    Good write up though, I needec someone to give me an executive summary. ;)

  • Marty Weintraub

    Thank Lyndon,
    We’ll be digging in more over the next few days and writing about the results.
    Marty

Join the Conversation