Wednesday (April 20, 2011), Google announced that the latest release of Google Analytics (dubbed “Google Analytics v5”) was available to everyone. For the past few months this version was only available to a select few for beta testing purposes. There are some wonderful new improvements that will help with conversion optimization tracking.
What’s new in the latest “v5” version? Here are a few things that I noticed:
- Dashboards – The new version has a dedicated tab for custom dashboards. Now you can have one place to view the top data trends for your site. The beautiful thing about this is you have the ability to add custom data “widgets” to the dashboard. Personally, my dashboard has “visits”, “bounce rate” and “conversion rate” widgets. This allows me to quickly see the number of visitors coming to the site, the average page bounce rate, and the average conversion rate. You can create any number of data “widgets” to view your data on this dashboard. My advice, just keep it simple and stick to the high-level data that ties directly to your business.
- Event Goals – This is a wonderful new feature that I have been personally wanting for a long time. Event Goals now gives us the capability to track page events, such as downloads of PDF files, button clicks, interactions with videos, how long someone watched a video, tracking of error messages, and much more. I will go into more detail of this new feature in a future blog post and how it relates directly to conversion optimization.
- Custom Reports – There is now a dedicated tab for custom reporting. This feature allows you to slice and dice your data in any shape or form and save the report for future runs or reviews. This new feature will allow me to spend less time exporting my data from Google Analytics into Excel for data massaging, and more time focusing on improving conversions.
There are many more features that available in the new “v5” version. You can read more about the new version on the Google Analytics blog.
How Do You Get Started With The New Version?
It’s actually quite simple. Just follow these steps:
- Sign in to your existing Google Analytics account.
- View the report you want to convert over to the new version.
- Click the “New Version” link in the upper-right corner of the page.
That’s it. One of the nice things is if you don’t like the new version you can simply click on the “Old Version” link and it will take you back to the old version.
Analyze everything and anything, and analyze often.
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