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Maximizing Google Analytics: Six High-Impact Practices


Are you getting your money’s worth out of Google Analytics? Investing time in customizing your settings in Google Analytics helps you get the most out of the detailed data it offers, particularly if your library’s web presence spans multiple platforms. In this issue of Library Technology Reports, experienced trainers Farney and Nina McHale point you to the high-payoff priorities, with specific advice on such topics as

  • How to implement Google Analytics in common content management systems, OPACs, discovery layers, and institutional repositories
  • Cross-domain tracking, including guidance on when and how to combine or separate data across multiple domains or subdomains
  • Identifying your website’s purpose and using Goal Reports to measure results
  • Using filters to exclude activity by library staff from your data
  • Using event tracking to get data on use of PDFs, video player widgets, and other non-HTML objects

Sample easy-to-implement HTML code is included in this issue, making it even more valuable.


Tabatha Farney is the web services librarian for the Kraemer Family Library at the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs, where she actively explores and implements various web analytics tools in her library’s web presences. She has presented sessions related to web analytics at several national conferences and looks forward to continuing her research in website data analysis. She was named a 2011 ALA Emerging Leader.

Nina McHale is assistant systems administrator at the Arapahoe Library District, which is located in metropolitan Denver, Colorado. In addition to web analytics, her research interests include open-source web development, user experience design (UXD), web accessibility (Section 508 and Web Content Accessibility Guidelines), knowledge management in libraries, and emerging technologies in libraries. She has presented nationally on these and other topics and was named a 2012 Library Journal Mover & Shaker.

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