Choose a Data Destination

Choose a Data Destination


Not sure where to begin with making reports or having trouble deciding which reporting tool will be best for your business? Let us help! This article will tell you what you need to know about which reporting options are available with your plan and how to get the most out of each.


Data Destinations and Your Plan

Google Data Studio and Google Analytics are included in all of our plans with no additional charge at any time.
During your 14-day free trial period, you can access our spreadsheet add-ons for Google Sheets and Microsoft Excel. After that, they are included in our Agency and Enterprise plan or you can include them to your A La Carte, Business, or Pro plan for an additional $49.95. For more information about pricing, click here.

Google Data Studio

New users and anyone on a deadline can save a lot of time with Data Studio. It is very easy to learn; Google Analytics Academy has free lessons. It also comes with demo presentations for practice. Data Studio can create professional, dynamic presentations. Here are some of Data Studio's advantages and limitations.

Pros

1. Automated reports that can be accessed from anywhere. You can set up a report for yourself or a client that will update itself, send you email alerts, and can be accessed from your home, work, or mobile phone.
2. Share and edit permissions easily. Sharing is as easy as entering email addresses and you can edit each user's permission so that nobody makes changes to the report by accident.
3. Ideal for dashboarding and visual storytelling. Data Studio has a wide variety of widgets, filters, selectors, and "drill-down" options for vivid, interactive presentations.

4. Preset analyses to save time.
5. No limit to the metrics and dimensions you can analyze or the number of report pages you can create. You can also add up to 50 widgets per page.
6. Beautiful pre-made Power My Analytics Templates. We make a lot of easy-to-use templates for Data Studio if you are having difficulty getting started on your own. You can easily add your own branding and color schemes and let us do the rest.

7. Connect to Google Sheets or Google Analytics. Display data that you've blended and manipulated with other tools.

Cons

1. Blending limitations. Data Studio can only blend a maximum of 5 different data sets and it is difficult to troubleshoot blending errors. If you need to do a lot of data blending, it may be easier to begin in Google Sheets and then connect that data to Data Studio.

2. Inaccessible for offline viewing and editing. For now, Data Studio only works online.
3. Cannot connect to Excel. It can, however, connect to Google Sheets.
4. Cannot pull data that takes more than 6 minutes to load. Power My Analytics warehouses your data, which may decrease the time it takes to load data. This can help with loading times and make Data Studio available to more data connections.

Click here for instructions on how to create your first report with Data Studio: How to Create a Report With Our Data Studio Templates 

Google Sheets

Google Sheets requires more technical understanding. It doesn't create beautiful dashboards on its own but it can be used to blend and manipulate data in ways that Data Studio cannot. This option is ideal for customers who need to blend data from multiple sources or who would like to interact with their data on a more detailed level. Here are some benefits and limitations of Google Sheets.

Pros

1. Scheduled refreshes and automatic email updates. With our add-on, you can schedule daily refreshes and email alerts so that your reports are ready on time for you and shared with all of the right people.
2. Easy blending capabilities. With tables and basic functions like VLOOKUP, you can blend data from multiple sources. There is no limit to the number of sources you can blend in Google Sheets.

3. More detailed data than Data Studio. In Google Sheets, you can see and categorize data by device type (mobile, desktop, tablet, etc.)
4. Easily connect completed sheets to Data Studio. Make dashboard reports after you've blended and manipulated your data.

5. No limit to the metrics and dimensions you can analyze.
6. Share and edit permissions easily. Sharing is as easy as entering email addresses and you can edit each user's permission so that nobody makes changes to the report by accident.

Cons

1. Row and worksheet limits. We've never had a customer run out of rows and worksheets in Google Sheets, but there is a limit. If you need more rows and worksheets than you can get with Google Sheets, Excel might be a better tool for you.
2. Start from scratch. With Google Sheets, you start with a blank page and we do not offer premade templates at this time. However, if you need a template, feel free to set an appointment with our Professional Services Team and we can make one for you.
3. Fewer pleasing graphics than Data Studio
4. More difficult to navigate. Spreadsheets can be massive. Your client may have difficulty locating the data you wanted to show them, or they may scroll past it.
5. Requires more technical understanding. It takes a little while to learn how to make good reports in Google Sheets and if you're a beginner to spreadsheets, it may take some time to familiarize yourself with formulas and blending.

Click here for instructions on how to begin making reports with Google Sheets: Google Sheets Data Integration Guide

Excel

Excel is a classic tool that many of us have been using for decades. It's powerful and it doesn't have the limited capacity of Google Sheets. Some customers are very accustomed to Excel and like to work with it because of the comfort and familiarity, but it's not very easy for new users to learn. Here are some benefits and limitations of Excel.

Pros

1. Easy blending capabilities. With tables and basic functions like VLOOKUP, you can blend data from multiple sources. There is no limit to the number of sources you can blend in Excel.
2. Can handle more data than other reporting tools.
3. Unlimited worksheets. The number of worksheets you can make is limited only by your system's resources.
4. More detailed data than Data Studio. In Excel, you can see and categorize data by device type (mobile, desktop, tablet, etc.)
5. No limit to the metrics and dimensions you can analyze.
6. Share and edit permissions easily. Sharing is as easy as entering email addresses and you can edit each user's permission so that nobody makes changes to the report by accident.

Cons

1. Excel is not free. You will need to pay for a subscription from Microsoft.
2. Start from scratch. With Excel, you start with a blank page and we do not offer premade templates at this time. However, if you need a template, feel free to set an appointment with our Professional Services Team and we can make one for you.
3. Fewer pleasing graphics than Data Studio
4. More difficult to navigate. Spreadsheets can be massive. Your client may have difficulty locating the data you wanted to show them, or they may scroll past it.
5. Requires more technical understanding. It takes a little while to learn how to make good reports in Excel and if you're a beginner to spreadsheets, it may take some time to familiarize yourself with formulas and blending.
6. No scheduled refreshes. You will have to go into your report and refresh manually.
7. Cannot connect to Data Studio.

Click here for instructions on how to begin making reports with Excel: Microsoft Excel Data Integration Guide

Google Analytics

Google Analytics has been around since 2005 and many of us are very accustomed to it. Though it doesn't allow as many dashboard widgets as Data Studio, it has more powerful data blending capabilities. Our Google Analytics connections are included in every plan at no additional charge and you can use it in conjunction with Data Studio. Here are some benefits and limitations of Google Analytics.

Pros

1. Easy blending capabilities.
2. Compatible with Data Studio. Blend your data with Google Analytics and then send it to Data Studio to be displayed beautifully.
3. Easily compare performance of paid traffic sources.
4. Track Return On Advertising Spending (ROAS) by campaigns, groups, and keywords.

5. Create calculated cost metrics.
6. Automatic daily updates.
7. Comes with preset analyses.
8. Easily combine spend with engagement and conversions. Then look at it on Google Analytics or export the data to Data Studio.

Cons

1. Limited to 12 widgets on your dashboard.
2. Reports/dashboards aren't as visually customizable as Data Studio.
3. Less customizable reports compared to Data Studio. Reports are more generalized and difficult to focus on specifics.
4. Data manipulation is not as easy and straightforward as it is in Google Sheets or Excel.
5. Limit on compatible metrics and dimensions. Email opens, spam reports, Amazon shopping data, etc. may not be available.
6. Limited hit-level granularity. After 500,000 hits (or sometimes less) Google Analytics will sample a small part of your data and make a general conclusion about the whole. To overcome this limitation, Google Analytics can be upgraded to the paid version, Google Analytics 360. (For more on this subject, you can read Google's article at this link).

Click here for instructions on how to begin making reports with Google Analytics: Viewing and troubleshooting imported data in Google Analytics




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