There is new life in the tool that shows change in Google Analytics. A year after releasing our Greasemonkey script, we are pleased to release an updated version of the Enhanced Google Analytics script as a free Firefox Plugin. For those already using the older Greasemonkey script, you can skip ahead to the What’s new? and How do I get this plugin? sections of the page. For the rest, you may be wondering: Why does my Google Analytics need change?
Change, and why it is important
When I first started working at Juice Analytics, my boss Zach showed me a part of his daily Google Analytics routine. He would open up the Referring Sites page, glance at all of our 942 referrers. Using his superior intellect and capacity for remembering random urls, Zach would discover interesting deviations in the traffic from sites linking to our blog.
Our top referrers looked more or less similar day to day. Even once you get past the more recognizable top sites such as Twitter and Google, the various somethingblog.com pages, without context, often look a lot like somethingelseblog.com. To top it off, most of the information is not even specifically interesting. Our chartchooser.juiceanalytics.com domain sends us consistent regular referrals, but so what? Day to day, I don’t even really care about Google or Twitter unless something changes. With change, I know whether someone has posted something new about me, sending valuable traffic. A good read on the topic is Avinash’s rant about “actionable analytics“.
Our Firefox plugin is designed to allow analysts to get more action out of what changed in the Referring Sites and Keyword Reports. Here are a couple examples of the plugin in action from our Google Analytics account:
Our focus for this release has been to improve functionality, to reduce the barrier to entry for new users, and to allow automatic updates for the plugin. The new version of the script works nearly instantaneously, and the installation involves only two clicks (in contrast to the 7 clicks of the Greasemonkey version). As a Firefox plugin, updates are now automatic and require no reinstall. Keyword sensitivity has been raised to 50% for consistency. As a slight bonus, the design and layout of the form and buttons is now sleeker and the table stands out in a pretty Google blue.
Greasemonkey itself is no longer required for the plugin, but you may want to keep it around for any of the other cool scripts available from the community. If you ever find yourself wishing that something about the web looked different, acted different or had different functionality, there may be a Greasemonkey script to ease your pain.
How do I get this plugin?
First, you need Firefox 2.0+.
If you are a user of the equivalent older Greasemonkey version of this script, you may want to go ahead and uninstall it. Go to Tools=>Greasemonkey=>Manage User Scripts…, select Google Analytics Downloader, and uncheck the Enabled box.
If you never had the script installed, or once you removed it, simply click here to go the mozilla addon site, select the checkbox and click the button. Once installed, navigate to Google Analytics, and go to either the Referring Sites or Keyword pages, and click the blue button.