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Data Over Time: Navigating Google Analytics
By clicking on the dates in the upper right corner of a report in Google Analytics, you can adjust the range of data you see, and/or compare one range with another.
Trends can affect your data; take seasonal traffic and the day of the week into account. Since our work is highly season-driven (by the church year and General Assembly), be cautious about comparing one block of time with another; usually, comparing one month's data with the same month of the previous year will be more useful than comparing one month with the previous month.
Analytics for UUA.org go back as early as October 2006, though of course our website has gone through a few iterations in that time, so very little data from back then is directly relevant to today's data.
Be aware of context: take note of site changes, other campaigns, world events, etc. Along the bottom of the line chart, you may see some "chat bubbles" that, when clicked, will display any annotations we've made to indicate major changes that might impact the data you see.
On Lynda.com's Google Analytics Essential Training, watch:
4. Google Analytics Report Fundamentals