Join Brad Batesole for an in-depth discussion in this video Setting account properties, part of Google Analytics Essential Training.
- Before you get too much further into Google Analytics I wanna walk you through how to review your properties and filters, and provide you with some tips on how to set up your new account. Your goals with any new account are add reporting views that filter out traffic from your own company, set up any additional user permissions and review the interface for interacting with your account properties. Let's start by looking at how you'll review your account properties and views. Once you're logged in with your new Google Analytics account anywhere on the site you go to the top of the screen and choose Admin.
Here you'll notice three columns: Account, Property and View. Within the top section you can choose from the dropdown, select from any accounts that might be associated with your login, any properties that might be associated with that account, and any views that might be associated with that property. In this case we only have one of each so it's fairly simple. You'll notice that within each of these columns are some information, you can change account settings, review your user management, set up filters.
Under Property you can review your property settings, you can even link AdWords, review remarketing. And here on the far right side is where you'll set up goals, filters, and even e-commerce settings or segmentation. As we explore this course we'll go more in-depth into each of these sections, but I want you to be able to find all of this information to start. A quick review of your property settings will let you double-check your property name, the default URL, you can even set a default view that you'd like to load when you come in to your reporting interface.
In this case we only have one, but if you were to set up several you can choose the one you'd like to see. On the left-hand side again, you can add additional users that would have access to this property, you simply add in their email address, choose from the dropdown to give them certain permissions and then Add. Now, let's take a minute to talk about filters. Filters are going to help you transform the data so it aligns with your business calls. If you recall from earlier, Google applies filters to your data before it presents it to you in your reports.
The most important filter to start with is to exclude you and your employees from your data. If you're testing your site or visiting it frequently you don't wanna have your results appearing amidst that of your customers, and the easiest way to do this is to create a filter that excludes all of the data from the IP addresses for your business. As Google Analytics processes your data it'll ignore any information that was coming from those IP addresses. First thing first you'll need to find out your IP, and I find the easiest way to do that is just do a Google search for "what is my IP".
Here you'll find that Google will provide you with your public IP address. Now, check this on several computers within your organization, sometimes you will have a different public IP from multiple computers even though you're in the same building in which case you'll need to add those into Google individually. I'll go ahead and copy my public IP, we'll go back into Google Analytics, and here on the far right side, in the View column I'm going to choose "Filters". You can see here that we have no filters set up in the table view so we'll add one by choosing New Filter in the upper-left hand corner.
We can give this a name, I'm going to call it "Exclude Myself", and then you have an option to choose either a predefined filter or a custom filter. And a predefined filter is a template of sorts that's already set up for what you'd like to do. And if you choose this Select filter type dropdown, in this case "Exclude", and then choose Select source or destination, you'll see that a predefined filter allows you to restrict traffic from your domain, an IP address, host name or subdirectories. In this case I'll choose "Traffic from the IP address", and then we can select an expression, we can say that "begins with", that are "equal to", that "contains", so if you had a range of IPs you could use this.
I'll choose that are "equal to" and then I'll paste in my IP address and choose Save. So at this point moving forward all of the data in my All Website Data view is going to exclude any data that comes from me, but it's not going to historically exclude this, so if you've been using the site multiple times and now you set up a filter it's not going to happen until the point at which you set up the filter initially. Now, you might also wanna add a filter to clean up your data, for example, sometimes a website will show the same page regardless of the case of the URL, meaning uppercase, lowercase or mixed case, so you could have someone visiting, say, "page.html" but it could be "Page", it could be "page", it could be a mix like "PaG".
This might take a user to the same place but Google could interpret those as unique pages, which mean that data is going to show up multiple times. To prevent this separation and see the page data collected together you can set up what's called a lowercase filter to force all of the URLs to a single case. Now, remember, these are not going to be configured retroactively to your data, and that's why it's so important to set 'em up now. So, to set up a lowercase filter I'll go ahead and choose New Filter again, I'll choose Create New Filter and give this a name, "Force lowercase urls", and in this case we're going to choose Custom from Filter Type, and we have a Exclude, Include, Lowercase, Uppercase, Search and replace and Advanced radio buttons here towards the center of the screen.
I'm going to choose Lowercase, and then we need to pick a field that we're filtering, what are we going to be forcing into lowercase. You'll notice there's a lot of options here, and the one you're looking for if you're changing the names like "page.html" is the first option here. I'll select that, and then we can verify this filter if we'd like, in this case there's no data associated with this account yet so it's not going to show me anything, but if you'd like you can choose to verify this filter say if you have data in your account, and Google's going to let you know what will change before you actually apply the filter.
I'll then choose Save, and now our filter is applied. Now, one other thing I'd like to point out is i'ts very common to apply multiple filters to the same view, so I should tell you that filters are applied in the order in which they appear in your configuration settings. Filter order matters because the output from one filter becomes the input for the next filter. A good example of this is let's say you wanna modify the data in a view to only include data from the United States and Canada. Your first reaction might be to create two custom Include filters, one filter to include traffic from the United States, and one to include traffic from Canada, but this won't work, during processing Google is applying the filters in that order, so the first filter will restrict the data to US only, meaning there's no Canadian data to filter after that.
You would instead create one filter using an "or" statement, so let's look at how to do that now. I'll again choose New Filter, I'll create a new filter, I'll give this one a name, "Canada or United States", we'll choose Custom from the Filter Type, we're going to choose Include because we want it to include Canada and United States, we don't want to exclude them. From the field I'll scroll through the list down to "Location" and choose "Country".
From here I'll type "United States" and then we use the pipe symbol and then "Canada", and that's going to make this a United States and Canada statement. And from here I can choose Verify this filter, in this case no data will appear so I'll leave it blank, and then I'll choose Save. So here we can see that I'm going to exclude myself and then I'm going to force all URLs to be lowercase and then I'm going to only show data for Canada or the United States. If you wanna change the order choose Assign Filter Order here towards the top of the screen, and then choose the move up or move down arrows here on the right-hand side to change the order, and then choose Save.
I recommend taking a minute to explore what types of filters you might need beyond what I described. You can explore the filter list to see if anything resonates with your business objectives.
- Creating a Google Analytics account
- Installing tracking tags
- Reading the dashboard, graphs, and data tables
- Setting up report filters
- Looking at audience demographics and interests
- Tracking engagement with behavior reports
- Exploring traffic with acquisition reports
- Viewing shared content and referrals with social reports
- Reviewing SEO feedback
- Tracking events
- Configuring conversion goals
- Adding custom campaign tracking