Add-ons allow you to extend the power of Google Sheets by automating common tasks and integrating with external services. Google have recently released an add-on making it seriously easy to create automated Google Analytics reports within Google Sheets.
What used to be a manual process can now be made completely straightforward for users to access, visualise, share, and manage their data.
Despite running off the power of the Google Analytics API, this does not require any coding experience. All you need to get started is access to a Google Analytics account and a blank Google Docs spreadsheet.
Setting it up
We’d recommend watching the official Google Analytics video here, which will show you just how simple the set-up is. However, we’ve also provided a step-by-step guide, below:
1. To download the add-on in Google Sheets, in the menu bar, click Add-ons > Get add-ons.
2. Type ‘Google Analytics’ into the search bar, click the + button, and grant access to the necessary permissions.
3. To get started, go to Add-ons > Google Analytics > Create report
4. After clicking ‘Create Report’ your workbook will have a new sheet called ‘Report Configuration’. You can add more reports in the columns and every report will generate a new sheet.
5. Select ‘Run Reports’ from the add-on menu, and everything will be updated.
If you would like the report to run automatically, you can select Add-ons > Google Analytics > Schedule Reports.
Select ‘Enable reports to run automatically’, where you can then control the time and frequency the report is run, be it every hour, day, week, or month, ideal for example if you need specific data for a weekly meeting.
It’s important to note that metrics and dimensions need to be formatted a specific way. For example, instead of just typing ‘users’ we need to type ‘ga:users.’ Luckily, there’s a very useful reference guide to find which metric or dimension you need to use.
The add-on makes it possible to:
- Multiple views Query and report data from multiple views, For example, if you have a view that tracks your iOS traffic and a separate view to track your Android traffic, you could use this add-on to run reports on both views and easily compare the results side by side, in the same spreadsheet.
- Automated reporting Schedule reports to run and update automatically.
- Tailored reports More specific, granular reporting and custom calculations tailored to your exact needs. Compare ‘x’ and ‘y’ without having to take more steps through the GA interface on a daily, weekly, monthly or annual basis.
- Branding Speaking of interface, you can brand these reports exactly as you wish and control exactly how it looks to suit your business.
- Sharing You can share your report the same way you would any Google Drive file allowing you to share for example with stakeholders who can view and edit the report, without giving them access to your GA account. Plus, only Google accounts that have access to the corresponding analytics account can run the reports to update it. Control who can see your data and visualisations by using Google Sheets’ sharing and privacy features.
- Create a dashboard with unlimited widgets, unlimited date range and unlimited segment selection, all of which are not possible on GA. For a more in-depth guide on creating a dashboard, click here.
- Make your data work Having the data in a spreadsheet gives you the ability to add, subtract, get percentages and use formulas to easily answer lengthy questions with requiring deep insights. It may take some time to set up, but once you have the report framework, you only need to change the date range every time you use it.
If you would like help with report design or streamlining your reporting please get in touch.