Automatically Email Google Analytics Reports

Just added last week was the ability to schedule a Google Analytics report  to run and then be emailed either to yourself or anyone else. It's a great method for checking critical figures, as well as reporting to anyone else involved in the site, like your boss or marketing department.

First, choose your standard or custom report from the reports list, and set an additional options, such as segmentation, previous date compare, the metric to display in the graph and the graph time period.

The reporting has not been around long enough to test ho the data selection works, but I would suggest leaving the data range on Yesterday, Last Week or Last Month to ensure you always get a useful date range.

Once you are fully happy with the report, open the report emailer by clicking on the 'Email' button just beneath the report name - it's currently labelled 'Beta'.

You will be presented with a new pop-up window with a bunch of options:

  • From address is fixed to your login an cannot be changed, except by changing your main Google account.
  • To is one or more email addresses that this report is to be sent to. Don't forget to include yourself if it is for multiple recipients. You need to separate the email addresses with a comma.
  • Subject will be pre-filled based on the report, but depending on the number of reports you configure you may want to change this to be more descriptive.
  • Attachments is the type of file to be sent. If you want to see the report in all it's graphical glory, select PDF. CSV creates a comma separated text file suitable for importing into a spreadsheet, database or other analysis system. Although they are just text, CSV files are not really suitable for reading in a text editor.
    TSV is similar to CSV, but the fields are separated with tabs instead of commas. This is mainly used by newer versions of Microsoft Excel, although most other spreadsheet and database systems can handle the files. The option is TSV for Excel makes a few minor changes to make the file look better in Excel.
  • Frequency sets how often to trigger the automatic email. Set to once will turn off all automation, and just send the email one. Daily will send every day, weekly will send once per week and prompt you for the day to send it. The most common option will be Monday where the date range is set to 'Previous Week', but it depends on your needs.
    Monthly triggers once per month, and allows you to set the day of the month. Be careful using and day of month above 28th - it's not yet clear how this will work for shorter months.
    Quarterly emails once per quarter - there are no options for this, as the quarters are fixed.
  • Advanced Options only appears where the report is schedules (not for 'Once') and allows you to set how long the report will be repeated for. The default is 6 months.
  • The white space if for the email message. You must complete at least some text in the message box before you hit send.

If you have more than one report that is triggered on the same schedule, you can add them together as attachments to a single email for convenience. Instead of hitting the send button, click on the 'Add to Existing mail' link in the bottom right. If you cannot see it, you probably have not yet created any automated reports.

If you select this a new page will open with the various frequencies listed, select one, and tick the box on the email you want to add this new report to, and click save. I quite like using this for two purposes: grouping together various different weekly reports, and for adding a CSV file to a PDF report so you have both the pretty graphs and the raw data.

One thing missing on the current Beta version is the ability to easily edit the scheduled reports for timing or recipients. Once this function is added (or I can find where it is hidden!) I'll update this post or write a new one.

There is more help on Google Analytics reporting at the official Google Reporting Help section.

1 comment:

  1. I am struggling to find the reports I set up in the old version. They still get emailed out, but I can't find them to change the frequency/to address, or delete them. I went to Admin -> Scheduled Email Reports, but only see one that I set up in the new version. Any ideas?