Google Analytics Training – Questions Answered

By: Michelle Law  | 12/21/2016

We received a lot of feedback and great questions on our webinar, Google Analytics Training: Best Practices Beyond the Basics. Here are some of the questions we received, along with our best advice!


  1. How do I drive clients to a blog?

    The four channels most commonly used to drive visitors to a blog are: search engine optimization (SEO), email newsletters, social media and paid social media.
    • SEO is primarily used to identify keywords that have search volume and are also achievable based on their difficulty. There are also SEO link building tactics that will help drive referral traffic and authority of blog posts.
    • Email newsletters distribute blog posts to members of an existing audience. It is a great way to keep an established audience actively engaged with your brand/organization.
    • Social media is an easy way to share content with an audience that is already engaged. Using hashtags helps your content reach new audiences.
    • Paid social is a great way to reach a target audience based on the demographics they have defined in their social profile. This is a low-cost method to promote your content to a new audience.


  1. How do you calculate concurrent users?

    Here is the formula to calculate concurrent users:

    Hourly sessions x avg. session duration (seconds) / 3,600 [aka # of seconds in 1 hour]

    You can also view the “Real-Time” section of Google Analytics to view sessions on the site live-time.

    To calculate the number of hourly sessions in Google Analytics, switch the toggle, highlighted in the image below, to change from the preset of daily to hourly:


  1. I'm still a little confused on filters, particularLY wheN deciding the right order. What's the optimal order of filters, given 2 other filters:  consolidate hostname and exclude internal IP address(es)?

    Filter order only matters when you are dealing with dependent filters, which happens when you are using the output of one filter as the input for another one. The two filters, consolidating the hostname and excluding IP address, are not dependent on each other so the order there doesn’t matter.

    However, if the filters were dependent on each other, keep in mind that the filters are executed in order from 1 to 2 to 3, etc.


  1. How Can You INtegrate Google Analytics with A Third Party API/SErvice, like Tableau and Salesforce Wave Analytics?

    Below is high-level information on each, as well as a link to learn more information:
    • Tableau – It's easy to connect Tableau directly to Google Analytics. With Tableau Server or Online, you can securely publish all or some of your Google Analytics data so everyone can see it, even if they don’t have GA credentials.
    • Salesforce Wave – Take your existing website performance from Google Analytics and push it into Salesforce Analytics Cloud. It will most likely take an integration partner or a developer to connect these two accounts.
    • Find more information on third party APIs/services from Google Analytics.


  1. How often should we view Google Analytics to get a good sample size?

    There is no final, definite answer. Typically, a month provides enough data, but it depends on the amount of traffic the site gets. Keep in mind that shorter time periods are more likely to be influenced by seasonality or events.

    To find a statistically significant difference, you can calculate an exact size based on the statistically significant percentage you are looking to reach. Optimizely provides a nice, free tool, A/B Test Sample Size Calculator. Survey Monkey also has a free Sample Size Calculator.


  1. What are the top 3 key metrics that provide intelligence for marketing to share with leadership to validate digital initiatives?

    The most important metrics can vary widely across digital initiatives. However, we typically find the most commonly reported metrics in digital marketing are:
    • Goal count – how many people achieved the campaign’s objective?
    • Goal cost – what was the cost per objective?
    • Conversion rate – at what rate did the engaged audience complete the campaign’s objective?


  1. If you change the timeframe that you are viewing after you set up a recurring report, will the report pull from the original timeframe or your new view?

    The automated report will update the timeframe to include most recent data. However, the report will use the same range of time from the original report. So, when you set up a report, make sure the timeframe length (daily, weekly, monthly, quarter, etc.) is correct.


  1. SAY you are testing the filter for 7 days and then want to amend the filter... when you find the filter you want and choose it, will it apply that filer to past traffic?

    No, filters only influence traffic moving forward. All traffic that was previously collected will not be affected by a new filter.


  1. What is direct traffic?

    Direct traffic is composed of users who type your URL directly into their browser or navigate to your site through a bookmark.


  1. Do you have an archived link to the webinar?

    Yes! You can access the webinar here:

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