Google Analytics - A googol's worth of features
Updated February 25, 2015

Google Analytics - A googol's worth of features

Rob Dautel | TrustRadius Reviewer
Score 10 out of 10
Vetted Review
Verified User

Software Version

Google Analytics

Modules Used

  • Web stats
  • eCommerce
  • Goals

Overall Satisfaction with Google Analytics

We use Google Analytics (GA) for various external sites around our ecosystem. Not only is GA a free tool, but it's many features and new ability to connect and monitor eCommerce activity are great. It is very helpful in monitoring web traffic and activity and helping to determine next steps in marketing and web projects. It's permission based roles allow us to assign users for overall use, dashboard or reporting only, etc. We can also create users and dashboards corresponding to specific sites, regions, or products. Sure, there are things GA can't do that others can, but we find the reverse is also true. Overall GA is a very good and helpful tool especially with it's recent updates from late 2013 to the Universal Analytics engine.
  • It's free. Can't beat the price.
  • It's permissions, reporting, and dashboards allow for great flexibility for users to get what they need
  • It has advanced features many don't know of such as eCommerce reporting tools, goals and trending tools, and a plug-in API.
  • GA still misses a few of the features some of the commercial tools do in regards to in depth data mining and trending.
  • It would be nice to see more Social sentiment in the GA system. This is an up and coming area that many are now adding to their tools, but most of the algorithms are so-so. Given the data Google captures they could build a good picture for social sentiment, but today are doing very little other than some social connectivity.
  • Google Analytics (GA) has a googol of features, but it takes time and effort to find, understand, and set them up. Go for it, but do some internet reading to help you.
  • Hey, it's free. Even if you're just trying it out, free is nice. I often use GA in parallel with a commercial tool to self check results
  • Beware the SEO algorithm updates! With any tool like GA, changes to the way Google does search listings and implementations can drastically effect your reports and results. Before you panic about large drops in traffic, do your homework to see if it's real or SEO changes.
Both tools have their place. Both can do things the other cannot. One is free, or near free if you're a Premium subscriber, while the 'O' software can cost considerable $$$. We often run them in parallel for sanity checks, but ultimately GA is the go to for new and proto sites. Now with the features gained from the update to Universal Analytics, it's more powerful than ever.
Be prepared to spend the time in the tool and read the documentation. Unlike commercial tools that can offer training or a person to walk you over the details, there is a lot to GA, but it can be hidden and takes time to find and learn. Out of the box, it works well, but the real depth takes time to discover and learn how to use.

Using Google Analytics

The new features from the Universal Analytics update in late 2013 make the tool that much more useful. There are still unexplored features to consider and all of it amounts to more power and ability to gain insight into your site, what the traffic there is doing, where is came from and where it is leaving to. All stuff eMarketing and web managers will want.