We Do Data Stuff

Google Data Studio, data integrations, and more

To safely copy reports and/or switch the credentials on data sources, you need to know how data sources work in Data Studio—especially if you're an agency creating copies of reports for different clients.

The Wrong Way

Suppose you have a report for client ABC that is connected to ABC's Google Analytics account. Now suppose you create a copy of that report for client XYZ. What you now have is two reports and one shared data source.

  • Report ABC ABC's Google Analytics (good)
  • Report XYZ ABC's Google Analytics (bad)

Now suppose you open report XYZ, go to the data sources configuration, and change the credentials on the Google Analytics connector to XYZ's account. You now have:

  • Report ABC XYZ's Google Analytics (bad)
  • Report XYZ XYZ's Google Analytics (good)

Yikes. By changing a data source in report XYZ, we also changed the data source in report ABC. Not good!

The Right Way

First, because data sources are shared across reports, it's important to name them properly. You need to clean up the names of your existing data sources.

  1. Open the Data Studio dashboard at https://datastudio.google.com.
  2. Click on DATA SOURCES in the left navigation panel.
  3. For every data source,
    1. Click the button to rename it. Use the format, “[Data Source] – [Client Name]”, i.e., “Google Analytics – Victory BBQ” and “Facebook Ads – Victory BBQ”.
    2. Click the button to see a list of reports using the data source; use this to find reports connected to the wrong data sources.

Second, use this approach when copying reports for clients:

  1. Open the original Data Studio report.
  2. Click the button in the upper right.
  3. In the data sources mapping dialog, create new, properly named data sources for the target report to replace the ones in the source report.

  4. Click CREATE REPORT.

Finally, some data connectors won't allow you to change the credentials on them without removing them and re-adding them to the report, which will break your report. For these connectors, creating a report using the procedure above is the only way to change the credentials.

Ready to use your custom data connector for Google Data Studio? Just follow these steps.

Create a new data source

If you are creating a new report,

  • Create a new, blank report.
  • Click on the CREATE NEW DATA SOURCE link in the lower right corner.
  • Skip to the Add the connector section below...

Otherwise if you are using an existing report,

  • Make sure you are editing the report. If there is an EDIT button in the upper right corner, then click it.
  • In the Resource menu, click Manage added data sources.
  • Click the ADD A DATA SOURCE link at the bottom of the list of data sources.
  • Continue to the next section...

Add the connector

  • In the gallery of available connectors, click the DEVELOPERS button in the upper right corner.
  • Paste the deployment ID/code you received from us into the Deployment ID field, and then click VALIDATE.
  • Follow the prompts to authorize and configure the data connector.
  • When you're done, click the CONNECT button in the upper right.

Check the data

The easiest way to start exploring your custom data connector is to add a table to the Data Studio report and then add various dimensions and metrics to it.

#GoogleDataStudio

When people click on a paid link in Facebook to visit your website, we want to be able to identify that traffic and differentiate it from non-paid traffic. Specifically, we need the source to be set to facebook and the medium to be set to ppc.

Google Ads does this automatically; Facebook does not.

The result is ugly data in Google Analytics. First, the source dimension will be one of m.facebook.com, l.facebook.com, facebook.com, or some other variation. Further, the medium is not set to ppc, so it is impossible to discern between paid and non-paid traffic.

Here's how to add UTM parameters to your links when you're creating ads in Facebook:

  1. Enter the complete Website URL as you normally would.
  2. Enter a short, recognizable site URL in Display Link.

    This makes it easy for Facebook users to see where they'll be taken if they click on the link.
  3. Click on Build a URL Parameter.
  4. Fill in the source, medium, campaign, and content parameters as shown here.

  5. Continue configuring your ad as you normally would.

That's it! Now Google Analytics is going to get clean, explicit information about where the click originated.

#GoogleAnalytics #FacebookAds #GoogleAds

Follow these steps to create a new dashboard for your client. If you're an agency, then “client” refers to the entity for whom you're creating the dashboard. If you're not an agency, then “client” refers to you!

UTM Parameters

We strongly recommend using UTM parameters when you post links on paid Facebook ads and posts. If you're not yet doing this, see Add UTM Parameters to Facebook Ads.

Google Analytics

Create a custom segment for traffic coming from Facebook Ads and Google Ads:

  1. Sign in to the client's Google Analytics account.
  2. Go to Admin > View > Personal Tools and Assets > Segments.
  3. Create a new custom segment for Google Ads.
  4. Create a new custom segment for Facebook Ads. Note: If you are not using UTM parameters in the links you post to Facebook, then you should omit the medium parameter (denoted with the green arrow). However, this means that this segment will look at all traffic coming from Facebook, not just paid traffic. UTM parameters are important!

Now we (and Data Studio) have an easy way to differentiate between Google Ads and Facebook Ads traffic.