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Big Update at Google Analytics

This article taken from SEO Speedwagon – December 14, 2007 – Erik Dafforn

Late yesterday, the Google Analytics team announced a major update to its free analytics package.

Taking full advantage of the upgrade requires something that I’m sure that the GA team wishes didn’t have to happen — the modification of the tracking codes on every page of your site. Basically, you’ll need to change the small snippet of code that used to refer to urchin.js so that it now will reference ga.js — Google’s new JavaScript tracking file.

But not to worry. The team has assembled a 22-page Tracking Code Migration Guide (PDF) designed to, um, walk you through the process.

Beyond a simply explaining how to update your code (which shouldn’t be a problem if you input the original code in the first place), the guide explains the benefits of the new system by showing additional features, such as:

* Tracking virtual page views
* Tracking downloaded files
* Tracking a page in multiple accounts
* Tracking subdomains
* Track a visitor across domains using a link
* Track a visitor across domains using a form
* E-commerce transactions
* Adding organic sources
* Segmenting visitor types
* Restrict cookie data to a subdirectory
* Control data collection settings
* Control session timeout
* Control campaign conversion timeout
* Custom campaign fields
* Using the anchor (#) with campaign data
* Setting keyword ignore preferences
* Control the data sampling rate

Some of these features already exist in one form or the other. For example, you can track file downloads by defining one of your conversions as such. But the new iteration promises more simplicity, which is never a bad thing.

Remember, as always, this is a beta release. (But you knew that, didn’t you?) I haven’t updated the code on our sites yet, so I can’t vouch for any particular improvements. But I am eager to get into it and will certainly post any interesting tidbits right here.

This article taken from SEO Speedwagon – December 14, 2007 – Erik Dafforn

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