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Company only has filtered view not raw view- how to proceed?

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# 1
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I started at my company a few months ago and am teaching myself GA because I think their reporting could be stronger. We're a free online education provider and not an e-commerce company, so I think our stakes are a little different (lower) than other businesses. Our website's GA account was created several years ago, but I found they are only using one view; it has our company IP filter on it but luckily that's the only filter applied. I know creating a new view at this point will not include any historical data, but I also want to do things right going forward. I don't want to add any more filters to the one and only view we have, but I know I need to add additional IP filters because it's not catching and removing all employee traffic right now (I think he used a machine IP and not our public IP).

 

My thought is to keep the existing view as the "raw"/historical/original view, even though it has a filter on it, because it's just an internal traffic filter (that's not catching everyone anyway) and this view has all of our data. Then I would create a test view for testing and a new "master" view. The new master view is where I would apply the additional IP filters to cut out the rest of the internal traffic.QUESTION 1 of 3: is this the best approach?

 

I'm thinking I should also create, say, 5 additional views for future filters. I don't know what we might want to do in the future, but I'm thinking we should just have these ready if we need them, so they'll all be capturing data from the same date forward. QUESTION 2 of 3: does this make sense?

 

QUESTION 3 of 3: Assuming I create these new views as described, how I understand it is that if I want to tell my boss how many people visit the site in February 2017 compared with February 2016, I would have to go to my "raw" view for the older data but my new "master" view for the Feb 2017 data. Basically I will have to do reporting in two views for the near future, since all previous data is in the raw view, right?

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Company only has filtered view not raw view- how to proceed?

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# 2
Top Contributor

Hi Kristin,

1/ That is indeed the best approach

2/ Yes and no. Unless you know exactly what these views are going to be used for, you'd just be duplicating your raw data view.

3/ That's the thing, you have to have historical data, which you currently only have in your raw data view. So until you rack up enough historical data in your master views, you're going to need to use segments on your raw data view that match the filters you set up on the master view, except IP addresses can't be filtered out. Your boss will have to know there is a decent margin of error/interpretation.

VP & Chief Evangelist at Hub'Scan | Contact me
Level 80 Digital Analytics Warrior, KPI Therapist and Keeper of the One True Tagging Plan

Company only has filtered view not raw view- how to proceed?

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# 3
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Re: #2, Yes, these extra views would be duplicates of the raw data view and would all look identical, but say a year from now I want to filter out international traffic, I could apply that filter to one of these extra views, and I would have data from the whole past year, right? Otherwise, I'd be creating that new view a year from now and applying that filter and only have the data from that point forward. So I might have 5 identical views just sitting around doing nothing, but when I need them later, the data from today on will be there. 

 

Re: #3 I mostly follow you but it's starting to go beyond my basic knowledge from the first round of Analytics Academy. I haven't worked with segments yet but I can research that. The part where you say "except IP addresses can't be filtered out", is that you referring to my specific situation, which is that I will be comparing Feb 2017 data from a new view with ALL company IPs filtered out to Feb 2016 data which will have some company IPs in there, and there's nothing I can do about that? If that's what you're saying, then I'm still following you Smiley Happy .

Company only has filtered view not raw view- how to proceed?

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# 4
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2/ if all you need is to exclude intl traffic, you can definitely use a segment that focuses on (includes) just one country

Also, keep in mind these 5 backup views will have nothing special about them, they'll just be copies of your master view so the insights you get out of them might not be useful.

3/ yes that's exactly what I'm saying Smiley Happy

VP & Chief Evangelist at Hub'Scan | Contact me
Level 80 Digital Analytics Warrior, KPI Therapist and Keeper of the One True Tagging Plan

Company only has filtered view not raw view- how to proceed?

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# 5
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OK got it, thank you! It's so new for me (and for the company) to do anything besides just look at total page views that I'm not sure yet what other permanent filters we might want to apply... But something definitely needs to be done because I think they've been going off of over-inflated numbers for years because they don't really know how to look at our data. There's not a dedicated analytics person and neither our web person (really more of a tinkerer than a programmer) or our IT person (really more of a hardware/network guy) is well-versed in GA. It's not in my job description but I'm trying to learn, but I think I've learned JUST enough to know what we should be doing but not quite how to get there! 

 

I welcome other feedback from anyone else who wants to chime in Smiley Happy