Google Real Time Analytics Becomes More Social

on September 5, 2012 | Google | Comments (0)

If you have Google Analytics installed on your website, you may have received an email from them recently about a number of product upgrades.

One of the main problems I’ve seen with Google Analytics social reports – is that none of the main social networks (Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, WordPress etc) have shared their social data with Google Analytics. This means you can’t see how many Tweets, Facebook Likes etc your content is getting in Google Analytics unless you do some very specific (and tricky) analytics customisations.

Interestingly enough, Digg, Reddit, Delicious and a few other small networks are Google Social Data Hub Partners. Basically networks that are made up mostly of public data.

However social media sharing suite, ShareThis is fully integrated with the new Google Analytics Social Reports, so if you just use ShareThis buttons then Facebook Likes, Tweets, LinkedIn shares etc data from ShareThis will go into your Google Analytics account.

But in terms of Referal Traffic Sources, Google has upgraded analytics and Social Media sites like Facebook and Twitter are finally recognised as a Social referal.

If you view your Real Time analytics you can see which Social sources are refering traffic. This is very handy when Tweeting and Facebooking links to see how many visitors are flowing through.

For example if you see this above screenshot, I posted a link to Twitter and you can now see Social (Twitter) referring visitors though. We don’t want twitter marked as Referral, we want it marked as Social.

You can then scroll through your Standard reports and look at the Social Referrals - which presents the data in a much clearer and accurate format!

This does bring some clarity to Real Time reports and a much simpler snapshot as you are dealing with content in the present and want to see more accuracy about your incoming website visitors from social networks.

David Correll : Editor and Founder of I also run a Social Media Agency where I do consulting work and Social Media Management. Connect with me: Twitter | LinkedIn | Facebook or contact me here. Alternatively, you can send me an email at


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