For Google Analytics beginners and advanced users alike, tips to create custom dashboards will automatically save you time when analyzing data. Custom dashboards should have metrics that can effectively track and display your web site’s criteria in a metric view which you decide. Allowing you the ability to target in on the information that’s most important.
Some default settings in Google Analytics may not accurately track and measure what is most relevant and important to you. This can be caused by averages and information overlapping which is tainting the real numbers. However, there are five tips that can make building custom dashboards simpler in Google Analytics.
1. Create a Custom Dashboard With A Starter Dashboard
The “Home” tab offers a number of report options when you log into your Google Analytics account. Located on the left sidebar menu, you can click the “New Dashboards” tab that will display a pop-up window that will prompt you to choose a Blank Canvas or Starter Dashboard. If you’re just getting your feet wet with Google Analytics, a Starter Dashboard acts like a tutorial to help you create the right type of metrics that you’ll need to track on a regular basis. Unlike the default dashboard, The Starter Dashboard features widgets that can create a partially custom dashboard. The key is to come up with proper widgets to make any custom dashboard fit your site’s requirements.
Adding custom widgets to a custom dashboard is very easy. Click +Add Widget found above the custom dashboard to create widgets when prompted to using a dialogue box. The six types of widgets include:
Each view has user-friendly dimensions and metrics supported by Google Analytics custom filters to sift out pertinent data. Simple metric view widgets are easier for beginners to use so that they can gradually experiment with more advanced filters along the way. If you would like to remove a certain metric or widget, find the gear icon to open the widget and then go to the bottom right corner and click “Delete Widget”.
2. Play with the Standard Widgets Edit Functions
To help gain a better understanding of widgets and how the filter process works, edit the standard widgets which were applied to the dashboard. You can do this by clicking the little pencil key at the top of any given widget. Then check the filters and metrics chosen for that widget and compare this to what’s displayed on the screen.
By doing this you will quickly begin to grasp how the widgets are created. Allowing you to test creating new widgets from scratch based on your new found knowledge.
3. Assign Appropriate Titles to Custom Dashboards
When using Google Analytics custom dashboards, you have limitless options for creating a profile on a web site. However, they must all be organized by relevancy and have appropriate titles. This will allow you to recognize the purpose of each dashboard clearly; whether you want to analyze content metrics, social media traffic, non-branded keywords, a/b tests, visitor metrics or revenue.
4. Use the Standard Reporting Tab
If the widgets creator does not include the widget you want, you can always to go to the “Standard Reporting” tab. This tab will allow you to choose a report with the items you want to track from the left side bar. Once you’ve selected the report, click “Add To Dashboard” at the top of the page.
5. Place Widgets in Order of Importance
Once you have all the widgets you want on your dashboard, you will need to arrange them in order of importance or place two metrics that logically go together. Simply click and drag them where you’d like them to be so that they can be viewed easier at a glance.
Overall custom dashboards can help speed up your analysis process, while targeting the information that critical to your business. You can get pretty elaborate the different types of dashboards reporting intense levels of information. The beauty is, once you’ve created dashboard, you can actually share it with your other analytics accounts and web properties.
For example here’s a link to a shared social media dashboard we created, which you can instantly install in your Google analytics account. With a click of a button, you’ll have better insight into your social media marketing performance.
Let me know what kind of high quality custom dashboard you’re creating and please feel free to share them in the comments below.