5 Ways To Share Google Analytics Data and Configuration

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I've written several posts about Google Analytics (GA) usage in the past, but never discussed about sharing the analytics data to outsiders. One simple way is to do remote screen sharing which in a true sense is not an account data sharing exercise. While working in teams, at times we feel the need to share different types of data with our team members. Sometimes, it is not safe to directly share account credentials with all team members. The best way to share sensitive data in such conditions is to utilize GA's in-built data sharing options. These options are easy to use and let you share the desired data safely with other users. So let's get started and see some of these data sharing options.

Sharing by email - This is one of the preferred and flexible ways to share your GA data with anybody having a working email address. You can use this method for any report (standard or custom) generated in your analytics dashboard. The entire sharing process through email is extremely easy for both the ends. Neither you have to manually extract or convert the data, nor do you require preparing any kind of draft and attachments.
Google analytics report sharing through email

Simply click the 'Email' button right above the report you want to share and you'll be presented a dialogue box as shown above. You can add multiple email addresses separating each one with a comma. You can also specify the format of data to be sent to the intended recipients. This ensures that each recipient get the data in his preferred format for easy and timely consumption. You can also select the time frame till the data will remain in active state. Lastly, you can write a custom message with the mail, but that is optional. I found this option very useful for newbies and for webmasters who are extremely busy.

Manual data export and sharing - The second option is also flexible and gives you the liberty to share the data at your convenience and in recipient's preferred format. You can use this option for standard as well as for custom reports. I prefer this option because generally I don't know beforehand when and which data will be required by the recipient. Sometimes the same recipient asks for different data formats on different days. That's where this option comes handy.

Google analytics data export menu

To use this option, simply press the 'Export' button right above the report you want to share with your team members. You can export the data in CSV, TSV, TSV for Excel and in PDF formats. I generally prefer PDF format because it is easy to read and understand. Once the export process is complete, you are free to distribute it in different ways. You can use this option to create archives of important reports in Google Drive after manually exporting and saving them in a special folder over time.

Share custom alerts through email - This is yet another useful data sharing option for websites with decent or high traffic. If you've configured custom alerts in your GA account and want to share them with multiple team members, you can do so very easily. This option is extremely useful for large teams maintaining a high traffic website working in different time zones.

Google analytics custom alert sharing through email
While creating an alert, you can configure the recipients' email addresses who will receive an email whenever the triggering condition is met by the alert. You can add as many email addresses as you want. If used intelligently, this data sharing option can help in handling technical glitches on your high traffic website in a timely manner as large number of team members will be receiving an update of an exceptional condition or an alarming trend.

Share custom dashboard configuration for easy replication - This sharing option is ideal for bloggers and webmasters managing multiple sites in different GA accounts. Custom dashboard is one of the most useful features in GA that brings relevant & filtered data for better analysis. Now suppose you want to create same type of custom dashboard for 20 different websites in different GA accounts.

Google analytics custom dashboard config sharing

One way is to manually create each one of them and second option is to import the dashboard's configuration in each account that automatically replicates the same dashboard in no time. You can do so very easily by clicking the 'Share Dashboard' button right above the dashboard whose configuration you want to share with others. Remember, this sharing doesn't leak out your actual website data, but only the settings and widgets associated with the dashboard are shared. Through this option, you get a unique link which can be sent to the recipient through email or instant messaging. The person at the other end simply needs to click the link while he is already logged in his GA account.

Share your GA reports in read-only mode - Sometimes, sharing a single or few reports through email doesn't fulfill the requirement at the recipient's end. For example, if you want to verify traffic claims before purchasing a direct ad spot on a website, you cannot trust on the data sent through email. In such cases, temporary read-only access to the website's GA dashboard can make things easy for both the advertiser as well as for the publisher.

New user creation in Google analytics

To solve this simple problem, you can add multiple users to any GA profile with read-only access. These users neither can export nor share any data themselves. They also cannot create or use custom reports, alerts or similar extended features. This is a secure way to share your Google analytics dashboard with others in read-only mode as it serves two purposes at the same time. Firstly, the person at the other end can see multiple reports very easily, and secondly your data is safe from any kind of theft. While using this feature, make sure you delete the temporary restricted profile once it is not required by the user.


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