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We at E-Nor are happy to announce the publication of our book Google Analytics BreakthroughFrom Zero To Business Impact authored by Feras Alhlou, Eric Fettman and Shiraz Asif.

Google Analytics Breakthrough is a single-source, step-by-step guide for using Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager to understand user behavior and maximize ROI from your traffic channels. Learn measurement strategy for desktop and mobile apps; best practices for data capture and navigating the reporting interface; advanced techniques for Analytics 360, BigQuery, CRM integration, unifying user experiences across devices, websites, and mobile apps,  dynamic retargeting; and a wealth of expert tips, tricks, and insights.

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Google Analytics Breakthrough: Author Q&A

To coincide with the release of E-Nor’s book, Google Analytics Breakthrough: From Zero to Business Impact, authors Feras Alhlou and Eric Fettman respond to a few questions.

Why did you write this book?

Having been in the analytics industry for so long, we have learned  a lot from our clients, partners, peers and our own network. We wanted to distill this knowledge into an end-to-end guide that would be helpful for many people.

Is it a text book?

Kind of, and we certainly provide many very detailed procedures where they’re needed, but we also like to think that it’s a little more fun.  Each chapter includes many annotated screen shots and/or diagrams, and we feel that the visuals really reinforce and facilitate the learning.  There are also many callout boxes for special terminology, common questions, sticking points, and warnings – also an important aspect of the information design.  And each chapter ends with key takeaways, actions and exercises.

Can I use it as a reference?

As we say in the introduction, the book is not designed to serve as the encyclopedia of Google Analytics.  Since our goal was to really emphasize what we feel is most important (and trickiest), we don’t review every metric in every report.

That said, the book is quite comprehensive.  You can refer to it for detailed discussion on many, many topics related to implementation and reporting/analysis.

How long is the book?

We were originally aiming for about 500 pages, but – counting the “front matter” (a term we learned from Wiley, our publisher) and the index – the book clocks in at about 600 pages.

Is the book printed in hardcover or paperback? Black and white or color?

The print version is available only in hardcover at this time.

The book is printed in color to enhance the reading and learning experience.

Aren’t a lot of technical books printed on paperback?

Yes, but this was published by Wiley primarily as a business book, so they went with hardcover.  Much of the material in the book, however, is what you’d might expect to see in more of a technical manual.

So is it primarily a business book or a technical book?

It’s both.  From the business, we build a conceptual foundation for measurement strategy and conversion optimization.  From the technical end, we cover the low-level aspects of Google Tag Manager deployments and Google Analytics configurations in detail.  We can say that the many specialized reporting techniques that we examine are somewhat technical but ultimately lie in the business realm.

How much of the book is about Google Tag Manager?

Since Google Tag Manager is recommended by the Google Analytics team as the go-to platform for GA deployment, many of our implementation discussions are centered in Google Tag Manager.  (The concepts and techniques are broadly applicable to other tag management systems, such as Ensighten, Tealium, Signal, etc.)

So who do you feel represents the primary audience for the book?

To pick up on our previous responses, the many portions of the book devoted to actual analysis in the Google Analytics reporting interface are, of course, geared more towards marketers and analysts – ultimately, the book is designed most specifically for this audience.

The book does go through all the necessary nuts-and-bolts technical discussions that would be useful for your development team, who, at a minimum, would need to be involved for including the GTM container code in your Web templates, but who would most likely continue to play an important role in implementation updates through GTM.

Which chapters to read?

The audiences for each chapter are clearly defined.  If you’re responsible for the Google Analytics program at your organization, you’ll probably benefit from reading the book pretty much end to end (or at least get started with about the first two thirds of the book, before the more specialized chapters towards the end).  If you’re the person actually tasked with the implementation, you’ll want to focus on the Google Tag Manager, events, and implementation customization chapters most closely.  If your role is primarily on the reporting end, you can focus more on the discussions related to the reporting interface, best practices for analysis, and marketing ROI.

The chapters on Google integrations, CRM integration, mobile app tracking, Measurement Protocol, advanced reporting and visualization, and Analytics 360 build on the previous chapters but are also somewhat independent.

Is the book for beginners?

You don’t need to know anything about Google Analytics to use the book, and, in fact, we feel that book would help beginners get off to a great start and (with practice, of course) end up with real, working competencies in Google Analytics and Google Tag Manager.

That said, the book was probably conceived for the many Google Analytics users who really want to fill in the gaps and understand how to use the tool effectively.

Is there a manager/executive overview?

The structure of the book allows for a high-level read with deep dives where they’re needed.

What do I do after I read the book?

On the book supplement webpage, we have posted a discovery document, an implementation guide, and a reporting guide to help you get started.  There we also post other complementary materials for the book.

What if I don’t have access to a populated a Google Analytics account?

You can get access to a populated, full-featured demo implementation here.  You can also create your own account to test the configurations that require higher levels of access than Read & Analyze.

Is the book geared towards the free or paid version of Google Analytics?

One chapter is devoted to Analytics 360 (the paid version of Google Analytics).  Pretty much all of the book is applicable to both versions.

What do the contributors write about?

The contributors – who include industry luminaries, expert practitioners, and the members of the talented E-Nor team – provide a wide range of tips, techniques, insights, methodologies and perspectives, and really just their own stories about how they make analytics and optimization effective for the organizations they work for and with.

Can I ask questions about the book ?

Certainly – you can email us at gabook@e-nor.com.  We’re always happy to hear from you. Also be sure to check out the book supplement page at www.e-nor.com/gabook and sign up for updates at www.e-nor.com/blog.

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