Introduction to Google Analytics Troubleshooter Tools

Google provides a set of tools which can help you greatly in analyzing and debugging Google Analytics data.

Google call these tools as troubleshooters.

They are basically interactive web pages which respond to users’ actions. These users’ actions can be selecting a particular issue and/or answering ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to questions.

Google has created these troubleshooters around certain analytics topics. So they are topic specific and can help you in fixing an issue only around that topic.

When you use a troubleshooter, Google ask you series of questions and then based on your answers, suggest you, what data to look at and where, in a GA report and how to resolve a particular issue.

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For example, Google has got one troubleshooter which helps in identifying and resolving issues with traffic fluctuations in your GA reports.

So say if you see a spike in traffic from a particular date, you can use this tool to understand the cause of the spike.

Follow the steps below to use this tool:

Step-1: Navigate to Traffic fluctuations/inconsistencies troubleshooter tool:

Step-2: Select the issue ‘I see a spike in traffic starting from a particular date’:

Google will now ask you following question:

In the Acquisition > Source/Medium report, is there a single source/medium responsible for the spike?

Step-3: Navigate to ‘Source/Medium’ report in your GA view and check whether a single or multiple traffic sources are responsible for the traffic spike.

Step-4: Depending upon your analysis, answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the question.

Let us suppose that a single source/medium is responsible for traffic spike and so you answered ‘yes’ to the question. As soon as you clicked on the ‘yes’ button, Google will ask another question:

Do you see a simultaneous drop in traffic from another source/medium?

Step-5: Depending upon your analysis, answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’ to the question. Let us suppose that you did not see a simultaneous drop in traffic from another source/medium. So you clicked on the ‘No’ button.

As soon as you click on the ‘No’ button, Google will give you a recommendation about what to do next:

Use the Behavior > Landing Pages report to examine the period before and after the spike for the source/medium that caused the spike.

If there is a particular page that drives the traffic, check whether that page had been specifically promoted during the spike.

If traffic is evenly distributed, the spike was most likely driven by user behavior or changes in outside factors (e.g., improvement in organic ranking, user-driven promotion of the site on social channels, etc.).

Such recommendations are invaluable to countless marketers/business owners who do not understand, how to drill down GA reports, in order to find the answer they are looking for.

Even if you are a seasoned analyst, these recommendations may give you new areas to explore.

Restarting the Google Analytics Troubleshooter

Let us suppose you want to restart the ‘Traffic fluctuations/inconsistencies troubleshooter tool’.

To do that just click on the issue you selected earlier:

Then select another issue you want to diagnose:

As soon as you select a new issue, the troubleshooter will reset and restart:

Similarly, if you want to change your answer to a certain question, you can do that by clicking on that question:

Once you click on the question, you get the option to change your answer:

Other Google Analytics Troubleshooters

Following is a list of other troubleshooters from Google:

#1 Troubleshooter for (not set) data in your reportsUse this tool to identify and solve issues related to (not set) data in your GA reports.

#2 Troubleshoot Google Ads clicks vs. Analytics sessions – Use this tool to identify and fix data discrepancies between Google Adwords and Google Analytics.

#3 Troubleshoot tag setup and no-data issues – Use this tool to fix issues related to installing Google Analytics tracking code.

#4 Troubleshooter for Ecommerce tracking and reporting – Use this tool to identify and fix issues related to standard ecommerce tracking and enhanced ecommerce tracking.

#5 Troubleshooter for Goal conversions – Use this tool to identify and fix issues related to Goal conversions set up in GA.

#6 Troubleshooter for discrepancies in Goals, Transactions, and Google Ads conversions – Use this tool to identify and fix data discrepancies between goals, transactions, and Google Ads conversions in Google Analytics and Google Ads.

#7 Troubleshooter for Google Ads and Google Analytics linking – Use this tool to identify and fix issues related to linking your Google Ads and Google Analytics accounts.

#8 Troubleshooter for Multi-Channel Funnels reporting –  Use this tool to identify and fix issues related to Multi channel funnel reports and attribution modelling.

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Himanshu Sharma

Certified web analyst and founder of OptimizeSmart.com

My name is Himanshu Sharma and I help businesses find and fix their Google Analytics and conversion issues. If you have any questions or comments please contact me.

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