Understanding your Google Analytics Account Structure.
Within your account you can have one or more properties that independently collects your data. Each property is given a unique tracking ID that tells Google exactly which data should be collected and reported together.
For each property, you have the option to create different views of your data. You can create multiple views for each property in order to protect and manage data.
It is recommended that you have at least three views for each property.
- By default you have one Unfiltered View that is automatically generated when you create a property. Do not apply any configurations or settings to this view as it is the backup of your data.
- You should create a Master View. This view should have all the settings you need to turn your data into useful information.
- Lastly, you create a Test View. When you make changes to your settings test them using this view first. Once you have checked the data you can then apply the same to your Master View.
Setting up this sort of view structure helps to protect your data when using different configurations and settings, as once Google Analytics processes data from your website or app the data can never be changed.
It is also very important to know that once you delete a view it is gone forever, so having a backup view, like the unfiltered data view is very useful, also when you create a new view, Google Analytics does not copy any of the historical data in an original view to a new view.
An example for a store website would be that you would create a filtered view that excludes data from its internal IP address so as not to mingle employees visits with those of the customer.
To create a view:
- Click Admin at the top of any Analytics page.
- Use the Account and Property menus to select the account and property in which you want to create the view.
- In the View column, click the menu, then click Create new view.
- Select either Web Site or App.
- Enter a name for the view.
Use a unique name that clearly identifies the nature of the data. If you use the same names for views in different properties, then you can face the circumstance where your list of views contains multiple instances of the same name but with nothing to distinguish them from one another (e.g., when you’re creating filters at the Account level).
- Select the time zone you want to use as the day boundary for your reports. For example, if you choose Australian Eastern Standard Time then the beginning and end of each day is calculated based on that time, even if the hit is detected from New York, London, or Moscow.
Changing the time zone only affects data going forward, and is not applied retroactively. If you change the time zone for an existing view, you may see a flat spot or a spike in your data. This may be caused by the time shift forwards or backwards, respectively. Report data may refer to the old time zone for a short period after you update your settings, until our servers have processed the change.
- Click Create View.