What’s new with Google Analytics, Brett Crosby’s eMetrics announcement


Google Analytics Authorized ConsultantIt’s always a pleasure to go to the eMetrics summits and hear from Brett Crosby what’s new and what Google has been working on in a very concise way. 15 minutes tops, crystal clear and true value for your money 😉

Last eMetrics in Washington, Google announced the launch of Google Website Optimizer. This time around, they are pushing a bit further by rolling out some very exciting features and holding true to their word to continuous support of their Urchin software version.

I’m pretty sure Julien will comment further about these new features. Let me just announce the big steps. So, what’s new with Google Analytics?

In a nutshell:

  1. Internal site search
  2. Event tracking of Web 2.0 Rich Internet Apps
  3. Outbound link tracking (TAGLESS!)
  4. Optional new GA.js code
  5. Urchin software from Google in beta version, only sold through GAACs.

Getting a bit deeper into the different features, Internal Site Search will show you the who, what & where of your internal search module. Reports will include time spent after search & reports of what happens afterwards. You can tie this back to your goal conversions and your e-commerce. I already know of a couple of clients who are going to be utterly thrilled with that!

Event tracking of Web 2.0 apps will allow you to track RIA in Ajax, Flash, Silverlight & Air and it will not inflate artificially your page views. It’s based on an event hierarchy of objects, action & label. Your object can for example be your player, the actions the buttons you use such as play, pause, etc. and the label will displays the name of the content.In your reports, you’ll be able to cross segment this with your other data such as geography for example.

As mentioned, outbound links will be tracked without additional use of tags. Gosh, that’s going to make life soooo much easier!

If you want to be able to use those 2 last features mentioned, you’ll have to update you code to include the new GA.js tag. It will also allow you to automatically detect SSL/HTTPS so that won’t be an issue anymore. Thank you very much! The new tag uses object-oriented code so it’s more compact and faster. And as a the cherry topping the cake, if you switch over from your urchin to your new GA code, EpikOne’s SiteScan is at your disposal, for free! Yeah!

UrchinLast but not least, Urchin software from Google is out in beta version, sold only by GAACs. It’s the software version that supports both page tagging and classic log files (if you still need that) and the good thing is that you can have both GA & Urchin running with a single tag. Urchin software from Google will therefore allow you to reprocess data and audit your raw logs if needed.
In terms of pricing, it’s a single fee of 2.995$, including all modules. It’s free if you’ve bought advanced support and if you didn’t, don’t worry: we will apply what you paid for moving from Urchin 5 up to Urchin 6.

So, on that note, thank you Brett, Google and the entire fabulous Google Analytics people working on this great product. And last but not least, happy birthday Avinash!

Julien back to you. Greetings from Washington.



6 Responses to “What’s new with Google Analytics, Brett Crosby’s eMetrics announcement”

  1. Julien Coquet Says:

    Great post, Aurélie,

    wish I’d been there myself to hear the news.

    This was to be expected, as Google had not officially replied to the announcement of Gatineau last September.

    I, for one, am very pleased to see Urchin v6 finally arrive after a 3-year hiatus which was starting to irritate fellow analysts and IT managers. Thanks to the Urchin team for finally managing to get some time off from GA development to offer this long-awaited upgrade.
    Most people know about Google Analytics but have no idea why the piece of code in their pages is called urchin.js! Hopefully, now they will 🙂

    Tagless outbound link tracking: great to see this finally integrated into GA. I would like to salute Brian Clifton’s and Justin Cutroni’s efforts to provide such functionalities in the past. It would be interesting to see how GA’s new functionality compares! I also hope it takes downloads into account.

    I’m skeptic about RIA tracking. I think a lot of debugging will be necessary to get results and, most of all, meaningful benchmarks.

    Automatic SSL detection = Christmas, but 3 months early 🙂 How many security errors have I witnessed because a client didn’t use the right protocol!! I can’t wait to see this for real!

    Expect either Mehdi or myself to post on this GA new code style.
    I’m a huge fan of Omniture’s object-based tagging and I’m glad this coding style was adopted by Google Analytics.

    Now is also a good time to mention that, after a couple successful trainings, OX2 will now be offering full-fledged Urchin training, support and consulting on top of our other GAAC activities.

    Cheers from sunny Brussels (not kidding) where we are preparing for another summit, Customer First.


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  4. Aurélie Pols Says:

    Brian Clifton’s EMEA GAAC responsible also published a post about the differences between GA & Urchin and what to consider when choosing – or not – between the 2.

    In his own words:
    “If anyone would like to read background information on what Urchin
    is (with latest beta screenshots), how it compares with GA and what criteria to consider for chosing it as a potential tool, there is a blog post at:


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  6. Alex Says:

    Brett Crosby just spoke at Stanford last week. Here’s the video:

    Really interesting to hear his views firsthand.

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