modthink blog 7

How To Start Using Google Data Studio

Being able to see the value of your efforts is huge. If you are not able to show that the things you are doing have been working then you could be discouraged or not even know what has been working best for you. You may be an expert at what you’re hired to do, but if you’re not able to show the value of your services, then you’re falling short. Sure, maybe your phone rings more often or more people are inquiring about your business, but how do they really know that these changes are a result of your hard work? The short answer is, they don’t. You have to show them the statistics. Google Data Studio is a great way to do that.

Statistics is a word that every non-math-minded person cringes when they hear. A page full of numbers and variables can get confusing. Although you might know it like the back of your hand, that doesn’t mean that whoever you are presenting it to is on the same page. They might not even care to try and understand all the brilliant work you have been doing unless it is in an easy format to see. The solution to this problem is quite simple. Google Data Studio.

Google Data Studio should be one of the most utilized tools in your toolbox. It’s user-friendly, cloud-based, and in my opinion, you just can’t beat it. It is also easy to get started with.

Here are the first 3 steps I took when setting up and learning Google Data Studio:

Step One: Creation

The first step is creating your Google Data Studio account. Due to the integration of Google’s accounts, you won’t have to hassle with the pesky online usernames and complex passwords. You will never have to deal with the “Forgot Password?” button because you sign into Data Studio using your Google Account. It doesn’t get any more simple than that. In fact, if you are already logged into your Gmail account, it won’t even prompt you to sign in at all. It will just automatically log in through your account. With multiple accounts, make sure that you are logged into the Google account that you want to be associated with Google Data Studio. It is that easy.

Step Two: Data Sources

After you have logged in, Data Studio takes you to a page with different options down the left-hand side and templates across the top. Before you can dive in and start creating reports that your clients will love, you have to upload a data source. Data Sources is the second tab on the left. When you click this tab there will be a small blue button with a plus sign. When I hit this button for the first time, I got excited. It was a full-fledged nerdy, geek-out moment because I saw all the data that could be connected through Google. All my ads, analytics, and Youtube data could connect through the cloud. The rigorous task of downloading data from each site was not necessary. I was in a data-driven, nerd state of euphoria.

You can, of course, upload your own data, but there are 18 different sources that Google can connect to. There have only been a few cases where I have needed to upload my own data. If your data isn’t housed in Google and you don’t want to upload static data, further down the page, it shows what other data can be accessed through partnered connectors. I needed to access LinkedIn and Facebook data on my dashboard, so I invested in the connector Supermetrics. It has worked well for me so far. For our specific needs, it has shown to be the best fit. There are more options for connectors, depending on the data you need to reach.

After you have chosen data through whichever connector you use, the Index, Field, Type, and Aggregation are automatically uploaded. You have the chance to review and edit those fields, as well as add new, calculated fields. The next step is choosing the create a report button at the top of your data studio dashboard

 Step Three: The Dashboard

The first thing I always do after creating a report is changing the name. I have found it best to change the name right away so that you don’t forget later on. You can change the name in Google Data Studio by clicking and typing in the upper left-hand corner, just like with Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides.

Next, I start creating charts. There is an “add chart” option at the top of the page that gives you a wide variety of options to choose from depending on your needs. Choose a chart and then on the right side of the screen, choose which metrics you would like to include.

You can create multiple charts with metrics that show value, add pages to the dashboard if necessary, and you have a very basic, first-run at your new reporting tool. Continue to play in Data Studio and learn more so you can impress everyone with your beautiful reporting processes.

Believe it or not, starting your journey of reporting your company’s value really is that easy. With only 3 major steps, it is too easy to not try it out. Maybe if you’re a nerd like me, manipulating data and creating visualizations will become your favorite pass time at work, like it has mine. Now that you have your reporting tools in order, you have to make sure that your PPC campaigns are optimized. Check out our blog to learn more about this!

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