Learning Google Analytics
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Published on September 20, 2016
Google has recently made it much easier to learn Google Analytics, even if you don’t yet have an app or website setup from which to collect data. For many years one of the challenges in learning Google Analytics has been access to an account where you can view data if you are just starting to use web analytics service. It’s difficult to learn to create reports or interpret data if your website doesn’t yet have Google Analytics setup, or if you are just starting to develop an app. The process of learning Google Analytics has just been made much easier with access to a fully functioning demonstration account for learning and testing purposes. The account is the same one used in the Google Analytics classes in Boston by students who do not already have access to an account. The account is also useful for those looking to experiment with new Google Analytics functionality and reporting options using data that is not currently available from their site.
The Google Analytics demonstration account has all the functionality of a standard Google Analytics account that would collect and report data on a website or app. It provides real website visitor data and business information. Users who are taking Google Analytics training or learning on their own can use the data to gain an understanding or how reports are views, created. Whether you were looking to learn Google Analytics from the foundation level upwards, or already are skilled with Google Analytics and want to test various reports, the demonstration account is helpful. The data comes from the Google Merchandise Store, an actual online store selling Google merchandise.
The account provides access which allows for reading and analyzing data, or simply “Read and Analyze” permission. This allows for viewing all reports, saving items for personal use, but not for collaboration with other users who are working in this account. All of the standard Google Analytics reports are available. The account even provides access with the options capabilities of both AdWords as well as Search Console, providing experience in integrating reporting from various services into Google Analytics.
Accessing the Google Analytics Account for Training and Demonstration
To use the Google Analytics account for training purposes, start by creating a Google Account. If you already have one, you can simply use it. The account use for Google Analytics does not need to be a gmail account; you can setup a new account using your existing email or login here: https://accounts.google.com/Login
After you have logged in to a Google Account the demonstration analytics account needs to be connected to your own Google Analytics account. If you already are tracking website data, this will appear as another website from which you can view data, under the Home section within Google Analytics. If this is your first Google Analytics account, you will gain a Google Analytics account and this will be the only website from which data will be reported. The demonstration account does use one of the 100 available accounts that each user can be set to monitor in Google Analytics. If you are monitoring 100 accounts, this will push you over the threshold.
To add the Google Analytics demonstration account, after creating a Google Account and having logged-in, visit this site: https://analytics.google.com/analytics/web/demoAccount
If you later want to remove the Google Analytics demonstration account from your list of websites that you are monitoring, you can following these instructions.
Learning Google Analytics helps you to make better decisions about your websites and apps, and this new option makes it easier to get started in the world of web analytics.
About the author
Christopher Smith is president of American Graphics Institute in Boston, Massachusetts. He is the creator and editor of the Digital Classroom book series. At American Graphics Institute, he provides strategic technology consulting to marketing professionals, publishers and to large technology companies including Google, Apple, and Microsoft. He delivers workshops relating to digital marketing, web analytics, SEO, and SEM. He is also the author of more than 10 books on electronic publishing tools and technologies, including the Adobe Creative Cloud for Dummies. Christopher did his undergraduate studies the at the University of Minnesota, and then worked for Quark, Inc. prior to joining American Graphics Institute where he has worked for 20 years.