Google Analytics Code Implementation – An Internet Marketing Company’s Perspective

Google Analytics Code Implementation – An Internet Marketing Company’s Perspective

A Bad Dream About Implementing Google Analytics Code

For the most part, implementing the necessary code on a website to accurately track data is elementary. I have found, however, that there is an exception to the rule.

Best Case Scenario

Google Analytics CodeIf you are familiar with the website you are working with, then implementing the code is a breeze. Your web team has built the website which makes it a simple task to install the urchin code appropriately. In this case there will likely be no guesswork or problem putting the code in the right place. After all, your web team built the site and they would be the best people to ensure the code is placed on absolutely every webpage and configured properly.

Worst Case Scenario

Imagine (if it hasn't already happened to you) for a second, a company with a robust site utilizing 1000's of pages, some php, some html, some flash and some aspx. They have come to you and asked you to setup the analtyics account properly.  Unfortunately, your team was not part of the development of this website. So your web team is given FTP access only to log on and find over 100 directories, sub domains and over 1000 .asp, .html and .php files in the root.

Here's a couple of question that came to my mind when this happened to us.

Q. In the "worst case scenario" who is best choice to place the code on every single page of the site without any issue?

 A- Possible Answer

Your team is the best choice, even though you are entirely unfamiliar with the methodologies used in website development.

 B- Possible Answer

The original web development firm that built the site is the best way to ensure accuracy of installation.  But do you trust them to care and do you have their buy in?

OK Let's Consider the Liabilities of Answer A.

Your team installs the code on all pages and the site no longer functions because a mistake was made somewhere along the line. You are not exactly sure where, but the bottom line is the client who came to your company only for website analytics now has a non-functional site. Now it's entirely up to you to fix what is broken. Because there are 1000's of assorted file formats, coding you are not familiar with, architecture that is unknown to you, where exactly did you go wrong?

Now as the web analytics purveyor you are on the hook to fix what caused the site errors that resulted in downtime. Moreover, for the time the website is unreachable because of your incompetence the client feels they have every right to hold you accountable for downtime.

This post was actually a bad dream I had last night. I woke up in a cold sweat, thinking what if?

The Lesson in this post?

1. Make sure you hire an analytics company with a proven track record.  A company that has done many installations is going to understand how to setup your code properly, filter data, setup goals and goal values.

It's a competitive market. Contact us to learn how you can stand out from the crowd.

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Post a Comment


  • avatar

    Jerome: Those are my basic thoughts, even if it means contacting the original design firm to ensure 100% implementation on all public pages.

  • avatar

    Hi Jerome
    What I tried to communicate was that setting up an analytics code may not pose such a major problem as there are many potential issues involved. But the heart of the matter is getting it done right. And, this cannot be done right by any Tom, Dick and Harry. You really need capable people to set it up. If that person is not you then you better get someone to set the analytics up right!

  • avatar


    You are absolutely right Timothy. Setting up an analytics code may not be such a Herculean task; it’s doing it right that really matters. Entrusting the work to experienced, competent internet marketing companies would be one way of ensuring it is done right. That is if you don’t want to sit down, take some courses, and learn it yourself!

  • avatar

    I agree with you Dylan. If the analytics code is set up by an experienced internet marketing player, it will guarantee your ROI. The benefits will soon outweigh the expenses involved.

  • avatar

    Yes Robert!
    People think putting GA tracking code is cinch. I don’t know how such a notion is out there. Its easy to plunk in the code, but setting up filters and goals is somethign that requires much more study. Learning all the time.

  • avatar

    Exactly true about Web Analytics – from my experience proper google analytics installation is well worth the costs as they will always make you more money than you would make otherwise. Very important! Good points.

  • avatar

    Thanks Timothy. I actually have no problem implementing code on most sites. It is the big sites that we did not build I find a bit of a stab in the dark. Example, the site that spawned this post is still not tracking ALL pages. I followed the advise in Google Groups, as it turns out the “include footer” file is not on all pages?
    Striving for perfection can by a pain sometimes!!

  • avatar

    I agree with you Robert. Setting up analytics code is not every one’s cup of tea. As they say, the proof of the pudding is in the eating, getting it implemented by an online expert is more important than just setting up one. It will insulate you from a host of site errors.

  • avatar

    I can see both sides of the fence. I posted the question in the Google groups forum.
    Which way would you choose to actually do it?

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