The ability to segment data and create custom reports that display only relevant data to a specified audience is one of the most powerful processes that you can implement for your business. It takes the endless arbitrary data that spews from your analytics tool, and displays only the important relevant data needed by each department to effectively take action and improve the company’s bottom line. Overall the process is fairly simple if people within your organization have well defined goals. However, I understand that sometimes an individuals/groups goal is somewhat unclear. If this is the case for you or your team, take time and think about what your goal is within the company, what is the one ultimate goal you/your department has to accomplish. What is the one goal you have that contributes to the bottom line of the company, once you have that, think of no more than three metrics that you can’t live without to accomplish that goal. This can be tough, but limit your selection to as few as possible. The idea here is to choose the most important metrics to your department, that way you know exactly what metrics you need to focus resources on within your company/department. Once you know exactly what metrics to focus resources on, you are now getting actionable insights from the data that your analytics tool is throwing at you. The last piece of this pie is outcomes, while metrics are a tool to find actionable insights for your company, what you are really after is the outcome of those actions, because it is the outcomes of all this that drives your company’s bottom line/growth. Once you are able to create a custom report that includes the “crucial” metrics and their outcomes, you will be able to see if the metrics you’ve chosen are really the “crucial” metrics of your company. If the outcomes of the actions that you performed, based on the metrics you’ve chosen, aren’t helping you to make decisions to improve the companies bottom line, then they probably aren’t the “crucial” metrics for that department.
The following is a visual representation of what is possible in Google Analytics, you will want to take the time to figure out which metrics will be the best for your specific goal/needs.
Google Analytic Reports – The Boss
The screenshot below is an example of what the boss of an organization may want to see. You can see it is only what he/she would be interested in, mostly revenue related metrics, that way he/she can find people to either pat on the back, or crack the whip on.
Google Analytic Reports - Acquisition Team
The screenshot below is an example of what the team driving traffic to your company’s site may need. Notice its only the meat: visits, new visits, bounce rate, avg time on page (Not avg time on site) Nothing useless to the acquisition team is displayed here, like “per visit goal value”, as shown above. While that particular metric may be interesting to the people on the acquisition team, it is not necessary to improve department performance.
Use Tabs in your Google Analytics Reports!
Google Analytics allows you to create tabs within the report for different departments on the same report, while still being able to segment different data within each tab. This is useful because you can make highly customized reporting for each department with only the data they must have and nothing else to waste their time looking at. An added benefit of this tab layout is that people like the boss can look at the custom reports for each other department and inquire further based on the data they see, if need be.
The Take Away:
- Define the ultimate goal of your department.
- Define the three, or less, metrics you can’t live without. The ones that tell you that you are doing good, or bad. (Per Department)
- Create custom reports that are end to end, meaning they include a given metric and that given metrics outcome. Make the report(s)/tabs department specific so each department only receives relevant data to mine insights, take action based on the insights, and monitor the outcomes of those actions.
- Analytics can transform your company into a data driven organization. Which means more $$$!
CEO | Director of Strategy