Now that you have successfully set up a Google Analytics account and verified that you have data in your profile, you’ll want to begin making sense of all those numbers. Don’t be overwhelmed by all the data that pours in. This is normal. Data analysis always requires lots of data… to analyze.
What’s important to remember is not to let yourself get analysis paralysis – instead master the art of actionability by making your analytics data focused and clean. The idea is to make your account readable and intuitive. In order to do this, you first need to create an additional Main Profile to capture all data, then add some standard filters to clean it up. In this lesson, we’ll focus on creating that additional profile.
Step 1: Create an Additional Google Analytics Profile
A ninja’s first step is to make sure that there is always a safe path to unadulterated data. The way to do this is to create a “profile” that will always remain untouched. Your Analytics is automatically stored in a single profile, but you have the option of creating additional profiles that include different filters and goals. These profiles are the ones you will usually look at. But this one untouched profile we are now creating will act as your “backup” profile in case anything goes wrong and you need to start back at square one. It’s like a storage case of throwing stars and katanas that you can always pull out and use if your great new ninja moves don’t cut it.
A – Add new Profile
Once you are logged in to your account, click “Add Website Profile” underneath the list of Website Profiles, on the left side.
The “Create New Website Profile” Window will appear.
In this window, select the “Add Profile to Existing Domain” option.
This ninja never recommend adding multiple domains to one account – unless you have a very specific reason for tracking visits across domains (and even then there are better ways of doing it).
Then, type a Profile Name using wording that will distinguish it from your initial profile. I usually use my first default profile as my “Unfiltered” profile and make the new one (which will eventually have filters on it) my “Main” profile. So, I tend to use the formula “[Site Name] – [Profile Name],” which looks like this “Analytics Ninja – Main” or “Analytics Ninja – Unfiltered.”
Then click the “Finish” button.
Google Analytics will take you back to the Account Overview page where you’ll see you now have two profiles created. Now would be a good time to rename your first profile.
B – Rename first Profile
You’ve just created an additional profile. On the Account Overview Page (above) click the “Edit” link to the right of your unnamed profile (it will be the one that looks like www.yourdomain.com).
Once on the profile page, click another “Edit” link located in the upper right hand corner in the “Main Website Information” pane. This will bring you to the”Edit Profile Information Page.”
In the “Edit Profile Information” window you’ll now see there’s an editable field to change your “Profile Name.” Edit this to fit the same syntax you used when creating your additional profile above.
Then click the “Save Changes” button at the bottom of the page.
You now have two profiles – a “Main” and an “Unfiltered.” Right now they both gather the same data but your next ninja lesson is going to make you stealthy by showing you how to filter out your own visits and start normalizing all the precious data that comes in.