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Google Webmaster Tools Now Reporting Single Clicks

I logged into Google Webmaster Tools (GWT) today and noticed something new: More granular reporting of traffic, all the way down to single clicks.

screenshot of google webmaster tools interface showing table of clicks to pages, some with 1 and 2 clicks

For anyone familiar with GWT, that’s quite a change because, at least for the last 3 years, it hasn’t reported anything less than 5 clicks/impressions.

Not that I felt it wouldn’t register anything unless you had at least 5 click/impressions, my gut feeling was that when it said 5 clicks it meant more than 0 but less than 6.

Why Did GWT Change It’s Reporting of Clicks/Impressions

It seems so long ago now that Google announced it would start obfuscating the vast majority of it’s keyword referral data——the (not provided) keyword mass extinction.

But when they did they made some references to improving the keyword data in Webmaster Tools, thus (ostensibly) protecting their users privacy but still allowing marketers to optimize content to their users.

Fairly quickly after Google started encrypting keyword referral data they expanded the window that GWT could look back from 30 to 90 days.

A couple months ago I noticed something else (see Figure 3 below: it’s possible this existied previously but I had never noticed it)

Top Searches and in the Top Pages

search queries segmented by page in google search console
Figure 1.) A triangle icon indicating more data

Detail of which queries triggered a specific page in SERPs from GWT
Figure 2.) Expanded, the details of the searched terms are revealed

Position in SERPs of Page for Search Queries Step 3 of 3
Figure 3.) Clicked, it reveals the positions where your page was shown in SERPs

I had never seen the detail of positioning until about 2 months ago.

1 Click, 2 Clicks, Red Fish, Blue Fish

Today I logged in to check on some of my sites and for the first time ever saw clicks greater than 0 but less than 5 so I thought I’d share it.

Now if only they’d incorporate conversion tracking.

Auto #Hoffsome Photobombs Ain’t Awesome

I pity the fool at Google who picked David Hasselhoff over Mr. T.

I’m a big fan of Google, they usually put a lot of work and thought into everything they do. Their Betas are better than most company’s finished products.

But given enough time, any company makes a mistake.

Today, I’m sad to report an egregious—and potentially fatal—error in judgement by the people in charge of Google+, and more specifically the Google+ Auto-Awesome Photo Tools. You can preview the post announcing this foolishness on the Official Google blog.

Mr T saying Its April, Fool

I Pity The Fool

Who in their right mind thought that David Hasselhoff would be better as the first celebrity for honorary photobomb status than Mr. T?

If you ask me this is an unforgivable oversight.

This is a travesty!

It’s the beginning of the end; it’s all downhill from here.

Google Even Featured #Hoffsome on Their Homepage

Even a company as mighty as Google, that should have quality control practices in place, still chose to feature “Auto-Awesome Photobombing” by David Hasselhoff on its homepage. No mention of Mr. T at all.

How does such a mistake happen?

The Beginning of the End

Surely a gaffe this significant is fatal even to a company as mighty as the big G…as it should be, if you as me. Such a lapse of judgement is a #Hoffsome mistake. I don’t know about you, but I’d much prefer to have my pics photobombed by the greatness of Mr. T.

Sign the Petition

If you agree, sign the petition below (AKA comment) to voice your support for Mr. T.

Data-driven digital marketing on a shoestring budget

A DIY guide to making the most of Google services through data sharing

This post expands on a short presentation entitled ‘Making the most of Google Services through data sharing’ I will be giving at the Web Analytics Wednesday Meetup in Columbus, Ohio on February 19, 2014.

The primary reasons I use Google services are low cost and staggering reach.

Most of the tools mentioned are free and the others can be setup—initially, at least—for less than $100 (their current evergreen AdWords introductory offer is ‘Spend $25 and get an additional $75 credit’).

In the presentation I touch on utilizing GTM, GA, GWT and AdWords but there are other tools that I regularly use in conjunction with those.

Those include:

  • Google Trends
  • Google Consumer Surveys
  • Google+ Local (aka Google Places)
  • Google+ (‘profiles’ for people, ‘pages’ for businesses)

All of the tools above are free.

Analytics Checklist

These are ordered by the order you will come across them if proceeding top to bottom, left to right (not by importance)

Admin Settings

google analytics admin interface

    • Account

Data Sharing
Share with other Google products
AdWords Linking
Link to AdWords Account
    • Property

Link to Webmaster Tools
Enhanced Link Attribution
Session Settings
Change default: Campaign Tracking 6 months => 24 months
Organic Search Sources
    • View

Default Page
(set if applicable)
Enable if applicable
(On)Site Search
Enable if applicable
IMPORTANT:Configure Macro (and possibly Micro) Goals
Content Grouping, Segments, Custom Alerts, Scheduled Emails, Shortcuts
As appropriate


google analytics custom report gallery for importing reports

In the past, I have published compilations of links to custom report templates that I found useful so I would have them in a single location for easy reference.

Thankfully, that is no longer needed as Google now offers a gallery of custom reports that can be imported directly

    • Import From Gallery

Occam’s Razor Awesomeness
Creme of the crop from Avinash Kaushik
New Google Analytics User Starter Bundle
Grom the Google Analytics Team
Justin Cutroni’s…everything
View all by him and import whatever might be relevant

There’s a fair amount of overlap between these (and some like those analyzing the number of keywords in a query are antiquated now that the majority of search is encrypted) so I recommend importing them all and cherry picking the ones that you like the best.


Data Layer Specification Draft:

Track Keyword Ranking as an event

Rename the Global Object

google tag mamager setting to rename global object

Prevent data loss with remarketing tag

CRM integration


Google+ Local Listings

Google+ Local

Google+ Local was introduced in 2012. Search results on Google following queries that include terms related to local businesses (usually a city and state) are now showing a clear preference to displaying Google+ Local pages/profiles. Right now it augments Google Places for Business but it is widely assumed it will eventually merge with, and overtake, Google Places altogether.

We setup, verify, and optimize Google+ Local pages for business.

In order to make the most of this service it is important that you make the most of it by providing us with basic business information including a logo, pictures of your office, products, trucks, etc. Basically, anything you customers will identify with you.

Google Places

(local business listings on Google Maps)

Google Places for Business offers free local business listings set up in Google Maps. By setting up or claiming your listing you get a highlighted pin on the map shown for local searches related to your business. We will also verify and expand the information listed to make sure your contact information, hours, location, categories, links and more are correct and set up for maximum benefit.

Additionally you can upload a few YouTube videos which are a nice touch. If you don’t have YouTube videos (YouTube is the 2nd most popular search engine in the world) we can help you create them and upload them for even more impact. With or without the videos, this is one of the highest traffic, highest quality services we know of. Accordingly, we strongly recommend claiming, optimizing and regularly checking on your business listing on Google Places and Maps.