Thursday, October 25, 2012

10 Tools to Best Use Google Analytics



Here is a list of ten tools you should probably use if you are going to use Google Analytics on a regular basis. Many of them are plug-ins or extensions, but one or two are online tools.

  1. HttpFox
This is a debugger. It will analyze the interactions between your site and your server. It is able to debug the information that is sent and received. It is able to check the information that is being sent over to Google Analytics. If you do not have access to the source code of your web item, such as with a Flash display, then this tool may help you.


  1. Excellent Analytics 
This “creatively” named tool is a plug-in for your Excel report sheet. It comes in handy when you export data from your Google Analytics reports. Create your dashboard on the back of your previous templates.

The plug-in will then issue you with automatic updates so that you need not keep downloading the pertinent data. You can just download once per week (to be on the safe side).

  1. Raven GA Config Tool
If you are using Google Analytics, this tool may be used online to help you. You are able to better configure your tag tracking. Any information you need for tag tracking is actually available via Google, but this configuration tool just takes the fuss and reading out of the process. It simplifies the process for you, giving you a few basic settings.

  1. Manage Profile Annotation 
Any annotation you do on your script can be managed with this Firefox extension. It allows you to manage your profile annotations. It is an extension to the Greasemonkey plug-in for Firefox. You are able to copy, paste and export your annotations. You can import and export your annotations in Google Analytics.

  1. Firecookie
This is an extension for the Firebug plug-in for Firefox. Firebug is covered in point seven below. With this extension you are able to manage your site cookies. You can also view your cookies analytics. You can ensure that any cookies on your computer were put there by Google Analytics. Any other cookies you can delete at your leisure (also very quickly too).

  1. URL Builder - Google Analytics Campaign 
You can build a URL for your Google Analytics Campaign using this tool. You can create custom campaigns online with their own URL, and then measure them with Google Analytics. The tool is available via the Google Analytics pages online.

  1. Firebug 
Firebug is well known by web developers because it allows for an analytics check with just one click. It is a Firefox extension that allows you to check the source code of an item with just one click. It is great for copying a little bit of source code for your own website.

It is good for things such as working out the source code for buttons and widgets. This may also be used when trying to create your Google Analytics campaigns.

  1. Regular expression test
It allows you to test a few regular expressions. It is a Firefox extension, and is great for setting tunnels, goals and for setting custom segments.

  1. Performance Dashboards Excel
With this tool you are able to set up your won Analytics dashboard using an Excel sheet. The numbers are still coming from Google Analytics, but you control how they are displayed.

  1. Copy Goal
This is the only Google Chrome extension mentioned on this article, so it has been saved until last. You are able to copy filters with this extension. You can also copy analytics goals too. You can copy them from one of your accounts to another. There is a Firefox plug-in that does this too, but it is not yet compatible with version five of Google Analytics.

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