How to Create Google Analytics custom reports (Basics)

Google Analytics has evolved into a complex analytic software. There are tons of data for analysis.  But when it comes to key metrics that matches your business objective (read this article - KPI for Websites), you don’t need all of them. Google Custom Reports is the solution.

Before we create our first custom analytics report, you have to understand the difference between Dimensions and Metrics. In Google Analytics, it can be confusing.

Dimensions describes an Object.  For example, a person can be described by various attributes like:

  • Name
  • Age
  • Occupation
  • Address

The Values associated with each dimension is the metric. For example, Address can have multiple values:

  • Building Name
  • Street
  • City
  • State
  • Country

Address (Dimension) -> Building Name, Street, City, State, Country(Metrics)

Each metric has different set of values

City - New York, Boston, Mumbai etc.

You can create reports purely based on Dimension. For example, the keyword used to reach your website is a dimension. If we want to see the list of all the keywords used by our visitors, we only need the dimension. But it doesn’t make any sense to look at keywords in isolation.  Can we get more information about time on page and conversion rate for each keyword? 

1) Log into your Google Analytics account and click the website that you are tracking

2) Go to the Custom Reporting section and click the New Custom Report Button

New Custom Report

3) For this tutorial, we will create a Custom Report that will map the keywords to each page title.

4) Provide an easily identifiable name for the report

Keyword to Page Title

You can create multiple tabs in the same report but for simplicity, we will be using a single tab.

5) In Type: Click the Flat Table view

6) Select Dimensions. We will select two dimensions: Page Title and Keyword.


Bonus Tip: The Dimensions and Metrics are categorized by default. To save time, arrange the variable from A-Z by selecting the ‘Display as alphabetical list’

Display in Alpahabetical List Custom Reports 

7) Select Metrics: Now let us select the metrics that would make the data meaningful.

Let us assume that the page that we are analysing is a tutorial and provides great value to the reader.  The metrics that we choose are

a) Average Time on Page

b) Visits/Page

c) Goal Completed (Read how to add goals in Google Analytics )

There are other metrics that are effective but we are focussing on the bare minimum that gives us a quick idea about how our readers are consuming and interacting with the page.

8) Set Filters: After adding the three metrics – set filters to include organic search and exclude visits from logged in Google users.

Set Filters in Google Analytics

9) Select Profiles: Select the profiles where you want to use Custom ‘Map Keyword to Page Title’ analytics report and click save.

10) Filter by Custom Report: Select the report from Custom Reporting and voila your analytics data will be customized according to the Dimensions and Metrics that you chose.


Final Custom Report Columns