Google Analytics Advanced Segments How-To

If you ever wanted to know how to build out complex advanced segments for a brand with non-traditional product names, Stephen Croome at SEOmoz has produced one of the finest articles I’ve come across in quite some time.

But, it is not for the analytics newbie or even the faint of heart. If you are an experienced analyst, this article will walk you through a fantastic example.

However, if you are just getting started with adavanced segments, you may want to start out with something more simple.

One that is a good starter is one I like to call “Social Media Traffic”. This segment lets you compare traffic and behavior on your site as a whole to that of visitors referred to you by the major social media websites such as Facebook and LinkedIn.

It’s easy to create…

  1. Click on “advanced segments” and then “create new custom segment”. This will open the editor for you to work your magic.
  2. Essentially, what you’re going to do now is tell GA to only look at traffic coming from sources that you specify. In this case, those will be social sites. So, your first filter will be the default “include”.
  3. In the green area (dimensions), you’re going to select “source”.
  4. In the match area I suggest leaving the default “containing”.
  5. Now, in the text box, you’ll type “facebook”.
  6. You’re done! You’ve just created a custom segment that filters on only traffic to your site referred to you by Facebook. Of course you may want to include other sites such as Twitter and LinkedIn… To do this, simply click the “Add Or Statement” and repeat for as many sites as you like. Just keeping adding them as “or” and you’ll be good to go.
  7. When you are finished, give a name to your segment and click save or preview to check your results.
Here’s what you might end up with:
Creating an custom segment for social media in Google Analytics
Creating an custom segment for social media in Google Analytics
It’s that easy! Now you can compare your traffic and the behavior of that traffic such as how long they stay on your site, how many pages they view, bounce rates or any ecommerce activities with other segments of traffic to understand if you should invest in generating more traffic from these types of sites or less.

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