KCL Software Solutions

Using Google Analytics in Your CIOC Site

About Google Analytics

Google Analytics is available as a free 3rd party service to track and report on visits to your site. For more information, visit https://analytics.google.com

How is Google Analytics configured in CIOC?

  1. The simplest way to configure Google Analytics is through the Domain Mapping setup area. Simply copy the Google Universal Analytics tracking code (e.g. UA-########-#) into the provided box for the given domain(s) and submit. You can use the same code for multiple domain names.
  2. If you require more customization about where or how Google Analytics codes are added, they can be placed in a Page Message (to track specific pages only), a menu or footer message, or many other locations. Follow instructions from Google Analytics help pages, in particular about managing multiple trackers on the same page if applicable.

How can you use Google Analytics?

Google Analytics are useful for:

  • Getting a general sense of the audience interacting with your site, including geographic location, type of device being used, browser language, sources of traffic / referrers, and more (these are approximations and reported on in aggregate)
  • Cases where you want to provide an external partner with limited access to statistics about usage, without needing to give them a database login or access to full web log statistics (for example, statistics on a particular domain or View).
  • Learning about rates of repeat visitors vs returning visitors
  • Discovering information about how people travel through your site from page to page
  • Getting a sense of current traffic levels on your site at any given time ("Real Time" Analytics).

Limitations of Google Analytics

  • Not all visits are tracked. Google Analytics depends on JavaScript and cookies to do its tracking, and users may have disabled JavaScript or cookies or turned on their browser's "Do Not Track" option.
  • Google Analytics may use "sampling" to do approximations for reporting purposes, rather than querying all available data. This allows for more efficient reporting, but means that the reports can be considered useful only as a general picture, and not hard numbers.
  • Google Analytics scripts understand how an individual user interacts with the site by storing a cookie with a unique "client ID" and following how the user flows through the site. This cookie is for the specific domain of the CIOC site being viewed and is not sent to other sites the user might visit. This does not directly tie the identity of a given person, and there is no way to identify the identity of individuals interacting with the site through Google Analytics tools, but is theoretically less private for the users. As noted above, users can take steps to prevent Google Analytics generating statistics about their interactions with any website. You should minimize privacy concerns by not enabling demographic reporting features in your Google Analytics setup.
  • Accesses are only tracked on pages where the Google Analytics script and tracking code has been added. Use CIOC's built-in Google Analytics setup to ensure the tracking code is added on every page. If you want to track traffic to an external site via the API, a tracking code will have to be added in that external site.

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