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Create Micro Dashboards for a Quick Overview

Dashboards can really suck. But only if they're used incorrectly. Giving a data-filled dashboard to someone with no understanding of what the dashboard is for is a HUGE mistake. This is why dashboards get a bad reputation.

But, giving a data-filled dashboard to someone that understands the purpose of the data, can be very helpful. For example, giving a social media dashboard to someone that is responsible for social media activities can give that person a quick understanding of their activities and results.

Here are a few dashboards that we created for #GoogleAnalytics and that you can customize:

Basic Blog Dashboard:
Mobile Ecommerce Dashboard:
Site Performance Dashboard:

Got any dashboards that you want to share? Post them below!
Mohammed Huzaifa's profile photoJodie Sangster's profile photoJustin Cutroni's profile photoTroels Kjems's profile photo
I like purpose built dashboards too.

For example, I like to have a 'checkout performance' one on ecommerce sites.

I've written about those here:

There's not much point in importing a copy of one of mine, because they require the relevant goals and funnels to be configured.

But if you'd like to take a look at one just to see, here it is:
The new custom dashboards are brilliant. I think pretty much all of mine include some kind of custom data from event tracking or whatever.

It's a shame we can't schedule them to be sent to the right people by PDF, or perform other calculations upon the data, but they're still really useful. Arguably more practical than custom reports for most of the people I need to send them to, plus it would save me the bother of putting the same data in Excel to send it.

This is a handy one for monitoring product categories on ecommerce sites:

Shame there are only 20 available, though. I hit that limit fairly quickly. If we send you nice things do you think you would be able to get this limit increased for us please, Justin?!
It is Excellent!, One of the best news
Thanks for the sharing!

+Tim Leighton-Boyce You make a really good point about configuration. Many times the data in the dashboard comes from events, custom vars or other customizations that may be missing.

+Matt Clarke I wish I could get us al more dashboards! Let me work on that. For now, send some really nice things my way and I'll see if I can make it happen :)

+Tom Baldwin Glad you like the site performance dash. I ignored that data for so long. Creating a dashboard was a way for me to look at it more often. Thanks for sharing the ecommerce dashboard. I like the trending of all the macro metrics. It provides great context.
+Tim Leighton-Boyce I love the idea of defining goals around Cart or checkout abandonment, any chance you can share your config - are you using events to define an abandoned Cart?

ok think i figured it out - I guess you Setup a funnel comprising of the cart and confirmation goal only then use the goal abandonment rate to measure dropout?
+lee howard No, I'm not using events. At the moment events can be used as goals, but they cannot be used as steps in a funnel. So this method has to be based on page views.

I'm setting up a whole series of separate goals, one for each step in the process. In each case I configure a funnel with a single step: the preceding page in the process. I can then report on each different abandon rate for every stage in the process in a series of separate dashboard widgets.

Here's that link to my original post on the subject:

I do this in addition to a 'normal' goal and funnel system. The normal one is configured with the ultimate ecommerce confirmation page as the goal and each of the stages in the checkout process as the steps in a funnel configuration leading to the goal.
Thanks Justin! I am loving the ability to share dashboard configuration now. It makes it so easy to share with my coworkers in our global offices. They are very thankful too!
+Justin Cutroni Yes! and export as a pdf. I'm having to take screen shot of the dashboard, save as an image and then email out.
Awesome Dashboards, can't wait for your Hangout today!
Some great stuff here. Here are a handful of my favorites. I figured I would share a Social Dashboard since Justin mentioned it in his initial post.

Social Dashboard:

Email Dashboard:

Display Dashboard:

SEO Non-Branded KW Length Revenue Dashboard:

I too have to add that I would really like to see some real dashboard functionality added. The ability to set thresholds/goals and filter by metrics would be awesome. Then if we could show funnels on the dashboard that would be a valuable visual. Tim's workaround is solid but it would be nice to have the funnel visual like Omniture has. I could add more but these are my two requests for now. Thanks Justin!
These are great +Kayden Kelly , thanks for sharing. I agree, we need to add some more visuals to the dashboards.

Tell me a little bit more about what you would want from threshold goals on the dashboard and how that might be different from alerts.

So much to do, so little time.
Now that I finally opened my eyes to tracking Tweets and Facebook buttons, I spend most my time lately trying to really come up on this stuff.

Mostly I am finding that engaged social traffic is WAY higher quality than those that are not willing to share.

Dashboards that can show that metric really excite me. Thanks +Kayden Kelly for the DBs and can't wait to see that new social reports soon +Justin Cutroni ...
+Justin Cutroni As a start, I am thinking an option where each widget could have a "show comparison" option and it could be set per widget to show a MoM and/or YoY comparison would be great. It could then display text and an arrow indicator in green, red, or orange depending on the actual status. The point of this is so that people looking at the dashboards have an instant visual of what is going on and don't have to think about it.

Here is a rough example:

Revenues (Metric Widget)
Current: $10,000,000
Last Month: $8,000,000 +25%
Last Year: $5,000,000 +50%
Or a less complicated option would be to set a comparison date range that is always the default view of the dashboard and you can hide the detailed comparison range data so it is a simple view. The current comparison range setting is nice but is an extra step and makes for an overly complicated dashboard view. It would be nice that people can see a cleaner view and decide to dig in to more details if they decide.

Next step would be to set a target goal and date per widget. The widget would calculate and display percentage of goal met and run rate trend to target goal. Again with appropriate colors and arrow indicators. Seems like this would be a bit too complex of a request to ask of GA though.

What do you think Justin? I know you have a lot of experience in the realm of creating valuable dashboards for clients. My question really is; how far can we expect GA to go towards becoming a real, highly valuable dashboarding tool?

+Chris Lang My pleasure.
Hi Justin,
Dashboards are great, but I've found that a simple query I can't seem to use. I send out email campaigns that are tagged, and the dashboard can show me numbers but not URL's. I'd like to see which URL's are the most popular in the emails I send out. 

EG: Campaign/Page - however I can't seem to do this?

Any ideas? I can have Page as a Metric and Campaign as a Metric, but I can't have both in one widget?

+Lisa Phillips Try using the utm_content parameter to track individual links in the email. Then you can see which specific links in your email get the most clicks. That's the best way to track the links.

Unfortunately you can't create a multi-dimension widget in your dashboard.

So, try adding the landing page URL to utm_content, along with the link name.

Hope that helps!
With inspiration from this post (and our day to day interaction with our customers) we have recently set up where we are trying to gather the very best Google Analytics dashboards and - very importantly - also guides on how to translate the data into action.

Unfortunately the GA dashboard feature still has certain limitations, but for business-focused discussions with customers it often beats a standard or custom report - it will be interesting to see how the dashboard features develop along with the Universal Analytics thing announced yesterday.
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