Data - The Driving Force Behind Personalization

Getting Started: Integrating Lift with Google Analytics

Data, data, data — it can become a blur of numbers, symbols and metrics that, to make sense of, can at times feel like trying to deep swim in the ocean without goggles. Our team at Acquia began to realize that an enterprise-grade analytics solution to complement Lift would help us in making sense of our data collection to tell our story.

We eventually chose Google Analytics to integrate with Lift, aligning to our best-of-breed approach. With capability to allow for information to be fed into and viewed in Google Analytics, with additional data from Lift, it is our belief this system is the best way to augment a user’s experience. Hiscox, a European Insurance company, with 2.5 billion in revenue, has successfully completed this integration with Lift, and we’re pleased to report we’ve been able to here, at Acquia, as well.

How It Works

In broad terms, Google Analytics is able to recognize Acquia Lift segments and store these segments as a “custom dimension” on a visit. With this integration, customers can look at metrics like bounce rate, time on site or other GA metrics as a whole through the lens of a specific segment aligned to their business goals, adding an additional layer of detail to reporting.

In Acquia’s Google Analytics, we can view reporting on our product and persona segments, including for Cloud and Lift, and on the content users interact with. For example, our findings show there is a significant increase in click-throughs on personalized blog posts, including a 266 percent increase for “Favorite Product – Acquia Cloud,” and a 72 percent increase for content related to Acquia Lift.

How We Did It

Our initiative to integrate Google Analytics with Lift was led by myself with significant contributions by the development and professional services teams, who were able to complete the implementation successfully in such a way that reflects an accessibility to the process, such that it can be completed by any team or individual with a minimal coding background.

Following installation of Lift on our website, now when a user comes to the site, this data is captured and is added to our profile, or segments. That data is reported to Lift, but it’s available to go into any platform. The team then created a JavaScript code to receive the user segments that we created in Lift, which makes them available for further use.

Our team then pushes that segment data to Google Tag Manager as an added data layer. Once we have the data, it can be used for multiple purposes — remarketing tag is one way, though the most common method is to send it to Google Analytics as a custom dimension. In Google Analytics, we are able to view metrics from the lens of Lift segments, including metrics such as average time on page, bounce rate, etc., so you are able to compare metrics for Lift segments to the site average, or to default.

In sum, one of the best ways companies optimize their analytics experiences is through an enterprise solution such as Google Analytics in tandem with Lift to truly get the most of your data and gain a full picture of what users are really seeking when visiting your site. Also, along with all the great reasons to use Google products, Google actively create new features and functionality for Google Analytics, which we are just as eager to hear about it. For more information about Lift, please visit acquia.com/lift.  

Prasanna Kulkarni

Prasanna Kulkarni

Web Analytics Manager Acquia