Welcome to part 4 of the Google Data Studio series, where I’m guiding you through connecting your data source to your first report, adding visualizations and making basic styling adjustments.
In part 3, we ended with some examples of report customizations. Now we’re going to set up a few tables and charts using Google Analytics Dimensions and Metrics to mimic Google Analytics reports, while showing only the information we’re most interested in. We’ll finish with adding a footer area to your reports.
Google Data Studio Series Index
Using Google Analytics Dimensions and Metrics
Earlier in this series, you learned how to add a table to the report. The default table view shows Dimensions and Metrics for Medium and Pageviews as shown below.
We’re going to change it, so that the table shows statistics for the top 10 web pages. With the table selected, you’ll see in the right sidebar in the “Dimensions” section that “Medium” is selected by default.
Click the “Medium” dimension to bring up a list of available dimensions. Typing “page” in the search field will filter the list of options to those containing the word “page”.
Click the “Page” dimension from the list above. The table will automatically update to show the “Page” dimension in the first column along with the list of pages sorted by “Pageviews” in the second column in descending order.
Next, make this table more useful by including additional metrics. Below the Dimensions section, you’ll find the “Metrics” section showing “Pageviews” as the only metric by default.
Click the “Add metric” option that appears below “Pageviews” to display a list of available metrics.
We’re going to now add the “Avg. Time on Page” metric to the report. In the search field, enter “avg. time” to filter the list of options.
Clicking the “Avg. Time on Page” metric shown in the list above will add it to the table.
Repeat this process to add the “Bounce Rate” and “% Exit” metrics to the table.
After adding metrics to the table, it’s likely the table looks cramped and clunky as seen in the image above. Stretch the table across the page by using the left handle so that each column gets plenty of breathing room.
Resize the columns so that they only use the necessary amount of space by clicking and dragging the column guides, similar to resizing columns in Microsoft Excel. I prefer to double-click one guide since it’s quicker, creates consistent spacing and resizes all of the metrics columns at the same time.
At this point, you might want to customize the style of the table, using the “Style” tab. Feel free to experiment for now. We’ll dig deeper into styling as we build out more of the report.
Adding a Report Footer
Adding a footer to your report is a great way to market to your clients or remind management of which team or department created this report on their behalf. We’re now going to add our company name, contact information and a list of services to a branded footer.
Click the Text component icon in the toolbar to create a text area in the report.
Drag out an area for the Text component. You don’t have to be precise since we’re going to resize it after we have the text in place. I prefer the footer to span the width of the page.
Enter your company name, contact information and list of services in the text component.
With the text component selected, it’s time to change the style so that it matches your brand standards. In the right sidebar, adjust the font, font size, font color, background color along with fine tuning the padding and text alignment as needed. In the example below, I opted for Tell Your Tale’s blue for the background, which really makes the white font pop.
Now that your branded footer area is in place, it’s time to make sure it gets added to every page of the report automatically. Right-click anywhere in the Text component and select “Make report-level” from the pop-up menu.
That’s all there is to it!
In part 5 of this series, I will show you how to add a table that shows website traffic by state and filtered by country, which will be “U.S.” in our case. You’ll also learn how to add more than one dimension as well as how to filter the data.
Connector: Connectors are software components that enable communications between your data and Data Studio. Connectors exist for many services such as Google Analytics, Facebook, YouTube and MailChimp. Some connectors are free, while others require a one-time license or subscription purchase.
Data Set: A data set is the information that will be displayed in the report. An example of a data set is the information contained in the rows and columns of an Excel spreadsheet.
Data Source: A data source is created by the connector and enables you to select the fields and options through the connector that will be used to create the Data Studio Report. A data source also provides a secure way to share reports and collaborate with other people.
Dimensions: Dimensions are attributes of your data. For example, the dimension City indicates the city, for example, “Paris” or “New York”, from which a session originates. The dimension Page indicates the URL of a page that is viewed.
Metrics: Metrics are quantitative measurements. The metric Sessions is the total number of sessions or visits. The metric Pages/Session is the average number of pages viewed per session.
Reports: Reports are the visualizations you’ve created, which are like workbooks in Excel. Reports can have multiple pages, while displaying data from multiple sources.
Explorer: This option gives you a way to experiment with changes to a report without modifying the report itself. It’s a great way to safely add, remove or change tables, charts and other visualizations.