Enabling Pre-defined Variables in the New GTM UI

In GTM 2.0, macros have gone away. These are now called ‘Variables’. There are many pre-defined variables in GTM 2.0 which make setting up tags & triggers easier than before, however, you must first enable them. This is just a quick post to hopefully save you some time and energy the first time you try to use the new UI to create a new tag or trigger. When you first create a new container, there will be a small subset of pre-defined variables already enabled. You can see them by navigating to the ‘Variables’ section via the left-hand nav. If you are creating any type of click or form event, you’ll want to enable these fields to have them show up as a selection when creating a new trigger. To
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Step by Step: Setting Up a Google Analytics Dashboard

Do you need to look at the same metrics or report on a regular basis? Do you want to share the same report across a broader group of stakeholders? Do you want to have the flexibility to change the date range for the whole report or segment it down to certain demographics or characteristics? Great – you can do all of that with a Google Analytics Dashboard! In this quick post I’ll walk you through the easy step-by-step process of creating a new Google Analytics Dashboard. Step 1: Creating a new dashboard canvas Decide whether you are going to create a new dashboard from scratch, or if you will add reports to a new dashboard from the regular reporting UI. For right now, let’s start from scratch. Later in the
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Update: Setting up GA via GTM’s new UX

This post is essentially an update to the one I posted about a month ago for setting up Google Analytics via Google Tag Manager for WordPress (using Thomas Geiger’s Duracelltomi Google Tag Manager plugin for WordPress). Now that the beautiful new GTM interface has launched, things may look and feel a tad different, so read on for an updated step-by-step. I’d also like to quickly thank my sister, Jilleen, who runs the awesome blog SoCal Field Trips, for unknowingly volunteering as an example for this post… did you think that blog help was free?! Love you sis! Ok, now onto the useful stuff… Step 1: Go to tagmanager.google.com (note that this link takes you directly to the new UX, whereas google.com/tagmanager will take you to the old interface) to create a GTM account.  You’ll get
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A Casual Conversation with Google’s Analytics Advocates

This morning I had the opportunity to do a fun little Hangout On Air for the Google Partners Network with my fellow Analytics Advocate Adam Singer. We chatted casually about some of our favorite analytics resources and tips and also answered several questions from the partner community. Check out the video of this conversation for some of our favorite tips!
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Join the DAA SF Symposium on Nov 13: Getting Data Right with Quant AND Qual!

Originally posted on the official Google Analytics Blog, reposting here: This year the annual Digital Analytics Association (DAA) San Francisco Symposium is taking place on Thursday November 13th and will be hosted at University of San Francisco. The theme is “optimizing performance using quantitative and qualitative practices”. The DAA SF chapter has lined up industry leaders who will be sharing their thoughts and experiences. We are expecting a great afternoon of discussion followed by a networking reception. Following are the event details: Our lineup of wonderful speakers is focused on presenting real-world solutions to the optimization challenges we all face everyday. They will be discussing the principles of qualitative data collection, optimization and the relation to quantitative data they’ve put into practice. This year we are piloting a new, more interactive
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The Alphabet Soup of Common Business Terms – Demystified!

Confused by the alphabet soup of business metrics you hear around the office? Here are some of the many business metrics you may hear, defined: KPI: this stands for Key Performance Indicator. A KPI is the outcome of a business objective, i.e. what you measure an objective against. ROI: Return on Investment, or ROI, is a measure of the business value you get out of a particular investment. For example, if you were to invest $500 on a website redesign, and your new website brought in 3x the revenue, after you subtract the costs you could say that the ROI of the website redesign was 200%, or an additional $1000. ROAS: Return on Ad Spend. Similar to ROI, this measures the business value you get out of an advertising investment.
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Three Actionable Analytics Tips to Implement Today

I have the opportunity to speak to a lot of different audiences about analytics & optimization. Many times, I’m asked to leave the audience with a few actionable tips that they can implement in the next week. While there are many things I’d suggest (and it does change based on audience), I often recommend the same three things as I believe they are fundamental to moving past basic analytics and taking a more hands-on, informed approach. Tip #1: Use campaign tracking Campaign tracking is fundamental to getting more granular with your referring/incoming traffic sources. If you do it right, you can get smart about the types of ads/links/emails/social content that work best at driving qualified traffic to your website. And the best part about it – you don’t have to
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Real-Time Analytics: Top Use Cases for Quality Assurance

When real-time analytics first came out in Google Analytics, there were a lot of questions on the usefulness of this report. Yes, it looks cool to put it up on a big screen in the office for people to watch how much traffic is currently on your site… but that may not be super actionable (depending, of course, on your business). Thankfully I’ve found a couple of very useful ways to use real-time analytics for QA to help make me a better marketer: 1. Ensure campaign tracking is setup correctly: Real-time analytics allows me to see that the UTMs I’ve attached to my blog post URLs are working correctly and attributing traffic to the right sources. It’s a nice assurance to quickly check this after posting a new blog post
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I’m Joining the Google Analytics Team to Advocate for Digital Analytics Best Practices

After working as a practitioner of analytics and optimization for the past six years (at Adobe, the Apollo Group, and most recently Google), I’m excited to announce that I’m ‘officially’ making the move to the vendor side of the house! I’m joining the Google Analytics team as a ‘Best Practice Advocate’ for analytics and optimization. Five years ago, I would have said this role was my dream job. Two years ago, when I joined Google, I still would have said that this role was my dream job. And today, now 5 days in, I’m happy to say I’ve actually landed my dream job! I say ‘officially’ with quotes for two main reasons: 1. I’ve already been at Google for two years, many might think that I’ve been on the vendor
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