For all you Google Analytics fan kids, we've taken a peek at some of the coolest parts of the new version release. We've also got some news on Chrome 12, Discussion improvements and a couple of hot acquisitions. 

Google Updates Analytics: 3 Power User Tips

Google recently rolled out a new and improved version of Google Analytics called version 5. Hot from CMSWire labs, we've got 3 killer new Google Analytics features all you power users can now enjoy:

Here a Dashboard, There a Dashboard

Google Analytics' dashboards (pictured below) are now widget-based and fully customizable. Widgets include: Simple Metrics, Pie Charts, Timelines, and Tables. This revamp gives you the ability to choose your preferred activity snapshots, with customization supported via filters and easy-peasy drag-and-drop.

Google Analytics dashboard

Even more exciting are multiple dashboards. Now, you can create up to 20 dashboards per profile.

Site Speed Report

Do you know how fast the page load time across your site is? And do you know that speed — or a lack thereof — can affect your site's organic search result ranking? This is information you definitely want to be privy to. With the new Site Speed Report, Google Analytics users can measure:

  • Which pages are the slowest
  • The difference in load time by browser
  • Which campaigns correspond to faster page loads
  • How page load times vary across geographies

Custom Reports

Custom reports have been part of the Google Analytics family since 2008, but the new platform injects some of the handiest features with more razzle dazzle. Now found under its own tab, the new custom reports include:

  • Filtering: In the old version of Google Analytics, users were required to combine an advanced segment with a custom report to analyze a subset of data. With the new platform, the filter can now be included in the report. You can also add multiple filters — which are then saved — to the same report, and filter on dimensions other than those you’ve chosen to use in the report.
  • Organization: When building multiple report tabs into your custom report, you’re no longer restricted to using the same dimensions for each report tab. 

(Check out our full coverage, including what's still cooking in the Google Analytics kitchen, here.)

Google Now Tracks and Ranks Authors

In a move that may shift the balance of power a bit, Google has begun indexing the attribution of content to content authors, rather than just websites.

Essentially, links can now contain the code rel="author" which Google will understand to mean that the linked name is the linking page's author.

This means that Google search results can show an author's content independently. Theoretically, authors could even be used as a way to rank different pages and sites.

"We know that great content comes from great authors, and we're looking closely at ways this markup could help us highlight authors and rank search results," wrote Google engineer Othar Hansson in the blog.

(Our coverage here.)

Google's PostRank Acquisition Stands to Bolster Google Analytics

Google is serious about getting more social and analytical this year. This week it was announced that the Internet giant has purchased PostRank, a monitoring service that packs a hanfdul of features for measuring engagement and influence, and maintaining brand integrity over the social media space. These capabilities wrap-up inside Google Analytics will be a powerful combination. 

Essentially, PostRank scans the web in real-time for social mentions via comments, Facebook updates, tweets and the like so that brands and publishers can gauge content influence. A packed-in analytics tool can then be used for discovering influencers, measuring performance and benchmarking the competition:




Which part of PostRank's technology was most attractive to Google is unknown, though rolling up pretty much any and all of it into current offerings would provide the Internet giant with a nice boost.

(Our coverage, including the possibilities, here.)

New Release of Chrome 12 Shines Brighter

For those seeking stability in their lives, the official Google Chrome number has just ticked over to 12.0. While not the flashiest of upgrades, there is still plenty of fun new stuff.

For starters, there is hardware-accelerated 3D CSS, which you can try out with this neat Shaun the Sheep-based video collection. On the more mundane side is improved Safe Browsing protection, which prevents you from downloading files with malicious content. The browser can also delete Flash cookies, you can launch apps just by typing their name in the Omnibox and there is an integrated sync feature.

(Our coverage here.)

Google Acquires AdMeld

Google lightened its pockets this week for AdMeld, an advertising optimization platform for publishers. The US$ 400 million dollar purchase ads another piece to Google's online ad infrastructure, as Google is expected to add the functionality to its suite of tools for publishers.

AdMeld is led by CEO David Barrett, former head of digital sales at News Corp. Mr. Barrett helped MySpace reach its revenue heyday, but took a major hit when traffic and sales started to plummet.

Discussions Improvements

The G team launched Discussions in Google Docs back in March, replacing comments with discussion threads, @mentions, email notifications, and more. This week they're back with a handful of improvements. 

The discussion pane: This pane now shows the selected text for each comment thread, making it easy to figure out which part of the document each discussion pertained to. 

Document statistics: By clicking the Discussions button and then the Document stats link, you can now see the 7-day activity of your doc: 


Collapse discussions: Say no to clutter! Now, long discussions are automatically collapsed and expanded on click.

Email notifications: Instead of sending the entire discussion in reverse chronological order, Google now show you the selected text and most recent comment, with the full thread in chronological order below.