Website analytics is one of the most important tools any business can and should use and there’s no secret here at NZDMI we’re big fans of Google Analytics. We’ve recently started our second level training sessions, for those who want to explore and utilize some of the more advanced features of GA, and from the feedback we’re getting Content Groupings in particular can be very helpful for some of you.
Content is still the king
With more and more content created online every day and with the growing importance of quality and relevant content to your site’s SEO strategy, it can become challenging to accurately measure results behind it.
Content Grouping feature allows you to categorize your content based on your own strategy, and rather than view results against a specific URL – to analyse performance of the group of pages.
With Google Analytics you can create multiple content groupings, and within that grouping – multiple content groups. This might seem a little confusing, but essentially a group is a collection of content, and a grouping is a collection groups.
For example: if your website includes frequently updated blog, you can create a content grouping for the blog category. Within that grouping, you can define rules for specific groups, which would represent various topics. For a tourism-focused blog, you can have a separate group for blog entries about walking, cycling or events you’ve attended. Any page that’s not added to the group, will appear as ‘not set’ in your reports.
Content Groupings setup
To create content groupings you have to navigate to the Admin View. Here you can view all your existing groups, make changes to the current setup or add a new grouping.
There are 3 methods you can use to create a group:
- Tracking code method, where you add a small piece of code on your site or in your app. You can find all the code instructions here. With this method you can use code to automatically adjust to changes in your content and new content groups, but you will need IT support to get the code implemented in the first place.
- Extraction method generates the name of your content group from an existing dimension of data. If you use regular expressions – you will be able to extract the group name using the dimension. If you don’t use regular expressions the value in the parenthesis will automatically be extracted. Google Analytics will then use the value as the group name. This method doesn’t require any coding, but might have to make changes to the regular expressions every time you update the content on your site. If you want to learn more about regular expressions in general you’ll find more info here.
- Rules method is very similar to the extraction method, but here you need to name the group manually. Similarly here you don’t to make any coding changes, but you will have update your rules when new content is added to your site, to make sure the previous rules still apply.
So while the 1st method does require extra work, it is definitely the most efficient and reliable long term option.
Remember – a single page can only be a part of one group at a time, so think of your content groupings strategy before you start the setup. You also need to keep in mind that content groupings don’t apply to historical data, so the next time you have a few minutes to spare you might want to set the first grouping up.
We hope you will find this feature useful!