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What is happening, where, and how much? Practitioner-written articles on Google Analytics and Google Tag Managers.

FLoC: Google’s Plan to Kill Off Third-Party Cookies

Third-party cookies are the new Flash. Safari and Firefox have already started to wean advertisers from them. Now, reluctantly, Google is, too.

Google plans to end Chrome’s support of third-party cookies by 2022, and they created a Privacy Sandbox to test new ideas and solicit feedback. Decisions that affect Chrome—with a nearly two-thirds market share—are decisions that affect the Internet, especially paid advertising.

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GA4 Is Here: Here’s What You Need to Know

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) officially launched in October 2020. Google’s update has left marketers and business owners scrambling to figure out how GA4 will affect their current (and future) marketing and data efforts. 

Do you need to rush to install it on all your sites? What makes GA4 so different compared to the current version of Google Analytics? 

In this article, we’ll fill you in on what you need to know. 

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How to Setup Google Analytics and Segment Your Data

When you hear “data segmentation”, it’s tempting to feel overwhelmed. Why? Segmentation can seem daunting (or boring) to those unfamiliar with it.

It’s an unfortunate because segmentation is perhaps one of the most effective tools at our disposal. The ability to slice and dice your Google Analytics data is the difference between mediocre, surface-level insights and meaningful, useful analysis.

In this article we’ll show you how to setup your Google Analytics to unlock actionable insights.

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Google Ads Hub

Not long ago, it was common for marketers and web analysts to spend the bulk of their day staring at Excel spreadsheets, manually collecting and organizing ad spend data across dozens of sources.

You had to go to each advertising account and export statistics on advertising campaigns, such as ad impressions, clicks, and costs, then export data from the web analytics system, and, finally, combine all the data manually.

Not an optimal use of time. 

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Raw Data & Google Analytics: A Game Changer

For a long time, I considered standard Google Analytics reports to be the best way to get useful insights. From time to time, I struggled with sampling, limitations, and weird results, but I didn’t see a way around it—until I discovered Google Analytics 360 and raw data exports into Google BigQuery.

After a few hours playing around with SQL, I was already able to deliver insights I never could have with aggregated Google Analytics reports. Since that day, I’ve been exploring how raw data can be a web analyst’s best friend.

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Data Discrepancies in Google Analytics: What Can Go Wrong, Why, & How to Fix It

Google Analytics shows 104 conversions. Your CRM shows 123 new leads. Heap reports 97. And so on.

It’s easy to get frustrated by data discrepancies. Which source do you trust? How much variance is okay? (Dan McGaw suggests 5%.)

For most companies, Google Analytics is a—often the—primary source of analytics data. Getting its numbers aligned with other tools in your martech stack keeps results credible and blood pressure manageable. 

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Google Analytics vs. Google Analytics 360 (Based on a Decade of Implementations)

For companies that build their analytics on Google products, purchasing Google Analytics 360 is a symbol of maturity. 

As a business grows, it inevitably runs up against limitations of analytics tools. For example, while the data aggregation process in Google Analytics seems like a “normal” feature, it might be a hurdle if your business needs to process data at the hit level instead of by sessions or campaigns.

It’s one of many potential business needs that could affect your decision to upgrade to a Google Analytics 360 license. But is it worth the serious investment?

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How to Use Google Data Studio to Build Better Dashboards

Set up the measurement tool. Clean and process the data. Turn it into information. Analyze it. Extract insights.

That’s hard work. But to have value, there’s still another step—the work must also be well communicated. You want data to form a straight line from KPIs to influencing business decisions.

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Google Analytics & Optimization: 10 Experts Share Their Favorite Reports

Google Analytics helps us identify conversion uplift opportunities. Traffic is precious, and we don’t want to waste it on tests that don’t result in learning or uplifts.

That’s why we want good data for:

  1. Which pages have uplift opportunities;
  2. Specific page issues.

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5 Underused Google Analytics Reports for Conversion Insights

Google Analytics is widely used. But most marketers only scratch the surface when it comes to reports.

You can find insights for conversion optimization from tons of reports—and the juicier reports are lesser known.

I asked some of my friends in the industry to share underutilized reports that they often turn to when looking for insights.

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What’s on my mind

Hi, I'm Peep Laja—founder of CXL. I'm a former champion of optimization and experimentation turned business builder.

I do a lot of thinking, reading, and writing around business, strategy, and optimization. I send a weekly newsletter with what's on my mind on this stuff.

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