Last week, I discussed how you use Google Analytics for your SEO efforts. It was admittedly an ambitious topic to try to tackle in one blog, and I left a few areas open that I will fill in these next few blogs. Today, I want to focus on synching your AdWords and Webmaster Tools so that you have access to some of the more advanced data that I spoke of last week.

The Benefits

Why bother linking AdWords and Webmaster Tools to Analytics? Like I said, this will give you access to more data within the Analytics platform that you would have otherwise needed to conglomerate on your own. Specifically…

Linking AdWords…

Will allow you to examine incoming traffic from your Google Pay-Per-Click (PPC) Ads. You can see at a very granular level the incoming traffic from your AdWords campaigns, broken down by campaign, keyword, and search query. You can see which keywords are leading to bouncing traffic and which are leading to conversions. If you have conversions set up in Analytics, you can transfer those conversions to your AdWords account (look out for an upcoming blog on setting up conversions for more details). The value of data on how traffic behaves on your site broken down by the keywords that led them there cannot be overstated. This data used to be taken for granted in the days before Google began encrypting searches, but now the data from AdWords is all we really have to work with.

Linking Webmaster Tools…

Gives you access to the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) Reporting section. As you might have guessed, these reports are very helpful for your SEO efforts. You can see what are the most common search queries that your site is ranking for, how high it’s ranking, and how many clicks and impressions your site is getting for those queries. You can also see how certain landing pages are doing in the organic Google results: how many impressions and clicks they are getting and their average position. This data is usually only available within Webmaster Tools and is significantly easier to work when imported into Analytics.

How to Link AdWords and Analytics

You’ll need an account with administrative access on both Google Analytics and AdWords. Log in and head over to Google Analytics.

Select the Admin section.

After ensuring that you have the correct account and property selected in the drop downs, find and click on “AdWords Linking.” Google literally just updated how this works and since testing it out, I’ve seen it pop up underneath Account and Property on different occasions. It shouldn’t matter, just select “AdWords Linking.”

From here, simply click “+ New Link” and you should be presented with a list of options to link to every AdWords account you have administrative access to. Select the appropriate account from this list.

The link configuration step just ensures that you have the proper Analytics account selected. Pick the appropriate one (or ones) from the drop down, then click “Link accounts” below.

You are done! It may take some time for the data to trickle in, but the setup is complete.

How to Link Webmaster Tools and Analytics

For this one, we are going to start in Webmaster Tools. Go ahead and log in on there to get started.

After you’ve found the site you want to link, click the “Manage site” drop down and select “Google Analytics property.” This will generate the list of Analytics properties to which you have administrative access. Select the site you’d like to link from the list and click “Save” at the bottom of the screen.

Done! Now sit back and enjoy the new flow of data pouring into your Analytics reports.

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