Hi, all. Are you looking for some plugins or extensions to get you started with Google Analytics auditing? Here are my top must-have plugins for Google Chrome.
Tag Assistant by Google
Tag Assistant allows to see you what Google-related tags are running on a website, whether they’re installed correctly and how to fix incorrect installation. As well as this, you can “record” your session to a website to see what information is passed on for each pageview and other hits you may be recording.
These recordings can be really valuable to understand if custom tracking is working. For example, for the author report I created a while back, I can see that Stephen Kenwright wrote this blogpost about Mobile CTR and the data is pulling in as expected.
Google Analytics URL Builder by QuickWin
This plugin allows you to instantly build UTM tracking URLs without having to go all the way to Google’s page for it. It makes it easy to get marketing tags quickly sorted on new blog posts, or if you’re doing some GA testing that involves splitting campaigns, or mediums, you can use this for that as well.
Google Analytics Debugger by Google
Event Tracking Tracker by Pete Milkman
The Event Tracking Tracker does exactly what it says: it tracks events. Any time you undertake an action on a website that fires an event, it makes a note of how it would be recorded in Google Analytics.
It’s especially useful if you have set up some new events, or are undertaking an audit for a website you are unfamiliar with; a quick way to check whether your events are firing as they should.
James – Analytic/SEO Auditor by Logic Agent
James is a wonderful all-in-one Google Analytics/Tag debugger. My favourite use for James is to quickly inspect what has fired on the DataLayer, as a form of Google Tag Manager integration. James can be used to see what tags are firing on a page, how long they take to fire and the associated Javscript.
Page Analytics by Google
Page Analytics is a great way to view how users navigate your website. It gives statistics about the page that you’re on, including click-through percentages.
To make the most of it, I would suggest implementing Enhanced Link Attribution to super-power your diagnoses. This plugin is necessary for anyone who wants to use the In-Page Analytics report (which may seem ‘broken’ without it), as new versions of Chrome and Firefox have enhanced security which may not allow In-Page Analytics to run within the Google Analytics interface.
Special Mention: Ghostery
Ghostery is typically used for preventing certain websites and trackers from tracking you. I give it a special mention as it is a really quick way to find out which trackers a website is using. It’s more extensive than Assistant as it covers over 2,000 different trackers.
This can be helpful to check if the correct tags are running on the correct pages and if you’re migrating your tags to Google Tag Manager, it provides an understanding of the tags you need to migrate.
Even better – Ghostery can be downloaded for five different browsers.