AccuWeather Unlocks Cross-Channel Impact Using Google Analytics Premium

Friday, January 16, 2015 | 9:30 AM

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“The ability to overlay our own data on top of traditional dimensions and metrics has provided valuable insights into the kind of information our consumers are looking for.” 

-- Steve Mummey, Director of Browser Products at AccuWeather

AccuWeather is the world’s largest weather media company with over 1 billion people a day relying on AccuWeather’s suite of products to give them real-time weather information. Today we wanted to highlight AccuWeather’s success with the Measurement Protocol in Google Analytics Premium. The Measurement Protocol is a feature where businesses can send requests to Google Analytics from countless customer touchpoints. 

Measuring the complete customer journey
AccuWeather needed to find a way to increase the impact of digital across all its channels and products. They were determined to find a robust solution that collected data from each customer touchpoint to give a comprehensive analysis to make better business decisions.

The team wanted to sought out accomplish four goals: 1) analyze the effectiveness of weather forecast emails 2) attribute credit to campaigns that drove users to app store pages, 3) better understand their mobile audience, and 4) collect this new data without compromising AccuWeather’s fast and simple user experience.

Google Analytics Premium solves the challenge
Using Google Analytics Premium, plus the Measurement Protocol, allowed AccuWeather to report on a variety of the company’s services simultaneously from one source. AccuWeather was able to have information from emails, mobile devices, and QR codes sent through the Measurement Protocol. This feature provided the AccuWeather team with a complete picture in the Google Analytics reporting interface alongside their other metrics.

Data-driven decisions that drive action
As a result of the sophisticated and comprehensive set of Google Analytics Premium features, AccuWeather has been able to more accurately identify the source of app downloads to track application traffic from QR codes and other offline campaigns to the app stores.

The team’s analysis revealed that 10% of the brand’s mobile traffic came from devices that either did not support JavaScript or had the feature disabled. Without using the Measurement Protocol in Google Analytics Premium, they would never have been able to account for this portion of its audience. The team can now include this audience in its product and monetization decisions.

Pleased with the success of this solution, AccuWeather now plans to apply it to other parts of its business to uncover new insights, new leads, and, of course, new customers. 

You can read AccuWeather’s full story and dive deeper into the results here. To learn more on the Measurement Protocol, check out this video.

Posted by: the Google Analytics Premium team

Simplify your Google Analytics Reporting with Add-ons for Google Sheets

Tuesday, January 13, 2015 | 9:59 AM

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It's common for Google Analytics users to use spreadsheets to analyze their Google Analytics data or combine it with another data source. But exporting your data from Google Analytics to Google Sheets is a manual process, and it can be tedious if you run reports frequently or manage multiple accounts. With the release of Add-ons for Google Sheets, getting your Google Analytics data into Google Sheets has never been easier!

Add-ons allow you to extend the power of Google Sheets by automating common tasks and integrating with external services. The Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-on allows you to access your Google Analytics data, right from within a spreadsheet!

The Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-on
The Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-on combines the power of the Google Analytics API with the rich feature set of Google Sheets, making it easier for Google Analytics users to access, visualize, share, and manage their data. With this add-on you can:
  • Query and report data from multiple views.
  • Compute and display custom calculations.
  • Create visualizations and embed those visualizations on third-party websites.
  • Schedule your reports to run and update automatically.
  • Control who can see your data and visualizations by using Google Sheets' sharing and privacy features.
But perhaps the best way to find out what the Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-on can do is to see it in action. In this short video I introduce the add-on, show you how to install it, and walk you through creating your first report.

If you want to go deeper, you can watch this more advanced video where I explain in detail the process of building a complete dashboard that automatically updates and can be embedded on a third-party website.

If you have more questions about how to use the add-on, check out the documentation. It explains each of its features and configuration options in much more detail.

Supermetrics and Analytics Canvas add-ons
The Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-on gives users a powerful yet user-friendly way to access their Google Analytics data, but it doesn't solve all business integration needs.

For more advanced business and data-integration solutions, I strongly recommend trying out these two excellent Google Sheets add-ons created by our technology partners:
Both of these add-ons integrate with Google Analytics as well as a variety of other platforms and services such as Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft Office, and many more. Free and premium versions are available. 

Feedback and Support
Add-ons are a great way to automate the process of getting your Google Analytics data into Google Sheets. We hope you take the time to try out these add-ons and see how they can improve your workflow.

If you use the Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-on, we'd love to know what you think. You can leave a review in the Chrome Web Store, ask any questions you have in the add-on discussion group, or submit feedback directly from within Google Sheets.

Any and all feedback is welcome!

By: Philip Walton, Developer Programs Engineer, Google Analytics

Boost Conversions by Infusing Google Remarketing with Marketo Real-Time Personalization

Wednesday, January 07, 2015 | 10:00 AM

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Personalization is a hot topic for today’s marketers, a group that spends nearly half of their budget attracting new prospects. But customer expectations have risen; content must be relevant to acquire new customers and move them to convert.

Some pioneering marketers are seeing better performance by using real-time personalization and remarketing simultaneously. Knowing who a customer is and what they do is a big step toward providing the hyper-relevant content that customers crave.

Join Marketo’s Mike Telem and Mike Tomita on January 15th at 10am PT/ 1pm ET as they discuss the importance of real-time personalization for marketing results. Google’s own Dan Stone will give an overview of the ways Google Analytics technology can be used to power advanced remarketing, while the Marketo team will share the ways their company uses real-time personalization and Google Analytics to generate more leads at a lower cost.

Looking for tips on how to get your organization started? Reserve your spot today!

Keeping the GA Web Experience Modern

Friday, December 12, 2014 | 1:00 PM


We're continuing to bring you new features and technologies in the design of Google Analytics to provide the best a user experience. With this in mind, starting January 31, 2015 we will no longer support official compatibility of Google Analytics with Microsoft Internet Explorer 9 (IE9). While you can continue to use IE9 after we discontinue support, some features may not work properly going forward. This update maintains our practice of supporting the newest browsers while discontinuing support for the third-oldest version, as we previously announced in September 2013.

We will continue to support the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer 10 or higher, Safari and other modern browsers. Of course, you will still be able to measure visits from users of all browsers, including IE 9. We will send further reminders prior to the deprecation, but do advise you begin preparing and implementing plans for this change at your earliest convenience.

Refreshing “The Customer Journey to Online Purchase” - New Insights into Marketing Channels

Thursday, December 11, 2014 | 12:23 PM

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Last year we introduced “The Customer Journey to Online Purchase” -- a tool that helped marketers visualize the roles played by marketing channels like paid search, email and display ads in their customers' journeys.

The goal was to help marketers learn more about the customer journeys for their industries. If social makes your customers aware, and email makes them convert -- or vice versa -- you can make sure you're in both places with the right kind of message.

Today we're happy to introduce a new improved version of the Customer Journey to Online Purchase, with a few key enhancements.  We’ve refreshed the data based on millions of consumer interactions, updated the industry classifications, and we’ve split out paid search so you can see the influence of brand and generic search terms on the purchase decision.

In each industry you can now see journeys for small, medium and large companies, which can often be quite different.
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For instance, the above image shows the journey for customers of small businesses in the shopping industry. Note that organic search is very often an "assist" interaction for these customers.
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Now here's the same journey for large shopping businesses. Note that display clicks and social are strongly assisting interactions -- while display didn’t even appear for the small businesses above. For both small and large businesses, a direct website visit is most likely to be the last interaction. Across industries, the differences from small to large businesses illustrate how different marketing strategies and customer profiles may lead to different buying behavior.

And there's more! Now you can drill down into each marketing channel for a closer look at the role it plays based on its position in the purchase path. Channels that occur more frequently in the beginning of the path are more likely to help generate awareness for your product, while the end of the path is closer to the customer’s purchase decision.
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In these charts, for example, we see the different roles that different channels play in the Shopping industry. One interesting insight is that all channels -- even those traditionally thought of as “upper funnel” or “lower funnel” -- occur throughout the purchase path, but a given channel may be more common at particular stages depending on its role (and depending on the industry).

Each marketing campaign and channel may have a different impact on customers depending on when they interact with it. Using what you learn from this tool, you can help adapt your marketing messaging to be more relevant and useful for your customers.

Try the Customer Journey to Online Purchase today. And for more helpful marketing insights, check out Measure What Matters Most: our new guide chock-full of suggestions on how to measure the impact of your marketing -- across channels -- to complement what you learn from the Customer Journey tool and take action to improve your marketing.

Happy analyzing!

Google Analytics in AdMob helps mobile app developer Eltsoft go global

Tuesday, December 09, 2014 | 10:19 AM

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Cross-posted on the Inside AdMob Blog 

Since March 2014, Google Analytics has been fully available in AdMob, and now app developers are increasingly seeing results by combining data from both platforms. Here’s one story that illustrates the power of AdMob and Google Analytics together.

Passion for languages and learning
Jason Byrne, and business partner Robert Diem, are passionate about making a difference in education. They came together during their time as professors in Japan to found Eltsoft LLC, a company that builds mobile language learning apps for iOS and Android. Together, they started creating a series of fun tools  that allow users to study whenever they want, wherever they are.

Global expansion
Their most popular app is English Grammar, which has been downloaded by more than a million people looking to sharpen their English-language skills in nearly 120 countries.

All of the company’s apps are available for free or as paid versions. To increase revenue, they chose AdMob to earn money from the free versions of their apps with advertising. “AdMob monetization is central to our success because it delivers high-quality, appropriate ads to our audience in their native languages, wherever they live,” says Jason. 

The Google Analytics data within AdMob helped them understand more about their users. "Our app, English Grammar, has users from all around the world, so we turned to data from Google Analytics and AdMob to understand which languages we should consider for localization. For example, we knew we had to prioritize German and French, but we discovered other languages that we didn't expect, such as Russian and Japanese."

A data-driven approach to marketing 
Eltsoft uses data to focus their marketing campaigns and assess where to use their resources most effectively. “Google Analytics keeps making campaign analysis simpler and clearer,” Jason says. “Data from various sources - Google Analytics and Google Play, for instance - are now all in one place. That helps me understand what’s happening with our ad campaigns.” 

While data analysis helped Eltsoft validate some of their hypotheses, it also uncovered opportunities according to Jason: “The greatest takeaway for me is that the results are never really what I expect. I am often surprised. Analytics has given us great insights into who our users are, and has provided a very important lesson in the value of surveying our user base. Our simple assumptions are often inaccurate.”

Replicating successful strategies
Eltsoft has developed a way to calculate the value of users by using a combination of AdMob metrics (like ad request values) and Analytics metrics (like user counts and sessions per user). Having Google Analytics in AdMob has unlocked such analysis because the data is available in the same interface.

As a result, Eltsoft can now understand what works best for their users. “For example, we’ve made changes to our apps, and Analytics has really helped us to track the effectiveness of those changes. I would say six months ago, that our success was a mystery. The data said we were doing well, but the whys were not clear. Therefore, we couldn’t replicate or push forward. But today, we understand what’s happening and can project our future success. We have not only the data, but can control certain variables allowing us to understand that data.”

“Google Analytics data is literally a goldmine,” says Jason.

If you want to learn more about how Eltsoft is using Google Analytics and AdMob, download the full case study

Want to learn how to get the most from Analytics in AdMob? Sign up for our free online course, Mobile App Analytics Fundamentals.

Posted by Russell Ketchum, Lead Product Manager, Google Analytics for Mobile Apps

Ringing in the New Year - Behavior Trends and Insights

Monday, December 08, 2014 | 3:40 AM


Last month we published an analysis of how people behave before and during the Thanksgiving holiday in the US. We saw the most important days of the year for retailers, how to take advantage of the top transaction days, and when to take action.

Today we are looking at the patterns of behavior over the holidays and into the new year with the objective of understanding how digital marketers can prepare for 2015.

After looking at data from the previous three years, we found two interesting insights:
  1. User behavior is significantly different from country to country, but very consistent from year to year within a particular country.
  2. The beginning of January can be a great time to offer new deals outside of the US.
Read on to learn more about the analysis we performed and how to take advantage of the trends we found, it will help you get a head start on 2015!

User Behavior Trends
Patterns can tell us a lot about data, they are intuitive and show us a lot of information at a glance. With that in mind, we produced the charts below to show how people behave around Christmas and New Year’s Eve. We wanted to understand the differences between cultures, so we focused on the trends from three large economies: US, UK and France. All the charts show data from December 11 to January 14 for the last three years and the two vertical grey areas represent Christmas Day and New Year’s Eve.

United States: the transactions trend clearly shows that users purchase mostly up to a week before Christmas Day and no improvement is seen in early January, although sessions do return to normal quickly after New Year’s Eve. Publishers should take advantage of this rebound in sessions, while retailers may want to wait on providing deals until sales bounce back fully.

United Kingdom: transactions decline sharply until Christmas and then start rising sharply from December 26, and about a week after New Year’s Eve it raises to levels about the same or higher than pre-holiday, so you might consider creating marketing campaigns and promotions to take advantage of January’s rise. Sessions follow a similar pattern.

France: transactions and sessions follow a similar pattern as in the UK, but with a significant decline during New Year’s Eve. As you can see, there is a major spike in the second Wednesday of January every year, that’s the day Winter sales begin in France! Unlike in the US, January is an important month for French retailers, should we say the French Cyber Wednesday?

Get a head start on 2015
So how can you take advantage of those trends to be more successful during the coming year? Here are some ideas for you to act upon right now:
  1. Look at your own data for previous years to understand the patterns for your existing and previous customers.
  2. Check your Benchmarking reports to learn more about how other websites of your size and in your vertical performed.
  3. Use Google Trends to check trends from previous years related to your vertical and country.
  4. Make sure you match your marketing efforts to your local post-holiday trend.
About the Data & Charts 
In order to perform this analysis, we looked at billions of sessions from authorized Google Analytics users who have shared their website data anonymously (read more).