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Google Universal Analytics – Top Ten Ways This Release Is A Game-Changer

We began using Universal Analytics several months ago and had the chance to deploy it for some of our clients. Most features were under NDA and keeping the lid on it was very difficult because we were excited like kids at the amusement park!

Here are some of my favorite features enabled through the completely reengineered Google Analytics platform.

1.) One of the coolest things about Universal Analytics is the ability to track authenticated users across all of their devices, and gain insight into the entire customer journey whether they’re using an iPhone while on the move, an iPad while couch surfing, or a PC at work.

Using the client ID feature allows us to track the user once they are authenticated.

Here are nine more reasons Google Universal Analytics can be good for business:

2.) Demographics and Interests feature parity with Google Analytics (ga.js) – this was by far the number one request by marketers who wanted to make the move to Universal Analytics right away.

3.) Import non-Google paid campaign data with the “Data Import” tool – allowing analysis of all paid media and unprecedented visibility over marketing tactics ROI.

4.) More Custom Variables (now referred to as Dimensions) – 400% more – previously only allowed 5 slots to use, now we have 20 to utilize – and 200, yes, TWO HUNDRED for Google Analytics Premium customers! Talk about rich attributes at the page, visit or visitor level.

5.) Dimension widening allows you to utilize Custom Dimensions to add meta-data not available through your website instrumentation – for example, product attributes (https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/3191417?hl=en)

6.) Custom Metrics – provides additional ways to measure your KPI’s (https://developers.google.com/analytics/devguides/collection/analyticsjs/custom-dims-mets)

7.) Works wonderful with Google Tag Manager – it’s hard to believe we lived without it until now!

8.) More granular control over settings with less dependency for a developer – session timeouts, custom variables, referral exclusions, custom organic sources – all  managed thru the admin panel, not code.

9.) Tracking across domain and subdomains are now simplified – less coding required, especially when using GTM

10.) Privacy controls – we can now anonymize visitors IP for enhanced privacy (and opt out completely)

» Test your Universal Analytics migration readiness.

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