Analytics and measuring performance metrics are highly important tools in the operation of Google’s businesses and in managing clients’ expectations when transacting with Google. With Google analytics general and specific data analysis can be done with great detail. The secondary dimension in Google analytics stems from a more specific analysis of reports.

To set goals and move towards meeting such goals and objectives in your online business, you need to deploy Google Analytics which is one of the best analysis and tools for metrics and performance tracking in the industry for online business operations. For basic tracking, Google Analytics has all the information you need. But if you’re looking for more details and specificity, you will need the secondary second dimension of Google analytics.

What Is A Secondary Dimension In Google Analytics?

In Google Analytics, secondary dimensions allow you to filter your reports by a second dimension. The data is still viewed in the context of the primary dimension but with an extra filter applied. We will be looking into the second dimension of Google analytics in more detail but before that, we will find out what Google analytics is about.

What Is Google Analytics?
Google Analytics is a free website analytics service offered by Google that gives clients who use the service insights into how users find and use clients’ websites. With Google Analytics, you can get to know where your site visitors are coming from, and how they interact with your website, thereby giving you insight on how to keep such users coming back to your website. Google Analytics is the most popular and widely used web analytics service open for use to clients on the Internet.

Google analytics gives clients the ability to track the behaviour of all visitors to the clients’ website and provides valuable reports to help in the understanding of the collected data. Google Analytics services is a free service offered by Google, the service generates detailed statistics about visitors to any website where the Google Analytics service is deployed. Google Analytics service is currently in use in over 57% of the over 10,000 most popular websites on the internet.
Google launched its analytics service initially in March 2005 as Urchin on Demand and later rebranded the service to Google Analytics in November of the same year.

The service was not free initially but was made free to all users by Google on March 31, 2008. Google Analytics provides an SDK that provides for gathering and usage of data from iOS and Android operating system apps, this is known as Google Analytics for Mobile Apps.
Google Analytics also tracks and reports website traffic to clients. Google Analytics is also a powerful tool that can provide clients with detailed analytics about the behaviour of visitors on their websites, and how they use the clients’ website, mobile apps or other digital properties.

What Is A Metric In Google Analytics?
Metrics are the most basic element in Google Analytics. Metrics are quantitative measurements. The total number of users to your site would be an example of a metric.

All metrics have a scope, which is either a session or a user, and have an aggregation type, which is either a sum or an average. Some metrics can be calculated alongside dimensions. For example, you might want to know the average number of page views per page. Metrics are the primary elements of data in Google Analytics. Metrics are quantitative measurements in your web analytics reports. They measure user activity and describe the characteristics of that activity.

Examples Of Metrics:

Number of Sessions (number of sessions)
User Type (user type)
Pageviews (pageviews)
Pages / Session (pages per session)
Avg. Session Duration (average session duration)
Metrics in Google Analytics can be categorized as follows:
User Metrics
Session Metrics
Traffic Sources Metrics
Page Tracking Metrics

What Is A Dimension In Google Analytics?
Dimensions define quality or attribute of a data set. Google Analytics calls them the “descriptive attributes of your data”. For example, in the case of product performance, you may want to understand how each product is performing by category. Here, the Category is the dimension by which you can analyze your product performance.

Dimensions are attributes of your data. The dimension city indicates the city, for example, from which a session originates. The dimension Page indicates the URL of a page that is viewed.

For example:

In the screenshot below, User Type is one of the dimensions available when looking at Audience Reports in Google Analytics and helps you see if your users are new or returning visitors to your site.

Dimensions are attributes of your data. For example, the dimension City indicates the city, “Paris” or “New York”, from which a session originates. The dimension Page indicates the URL of a page that is viewed.

The name of each standard report indicates the primary dimension that the report offers. For example, the Visitor’s report table lists all of the cities from which sessions originated. The Pageviews report lists URLs of pages that were viewed during sessions.

The primary dimension is the first column in each standard report. You can add secondary dimensions to reports to further describe the primary dimension. A secondary dimension appears as a sub-column in a table and displays values for each row of the table.

For example, you can add a secondary dimension to the Pageviews report indicating whether visitors viewed an eCommerce product page (such as /product?prod=1) or viewed an informational page (such as /about/company). In this case, you would add a secondary dimension such as Event Category so you could see whether visitors viewed only informational pages or both informational and product pages.

What Is Secondary Dimension In Google Analytics?
The secondary dimension provides more insight into generated data and analysis by Google analytics to clients. Secondary dimensions help clients who use Google analytics to see other aspects of the generated data by the Google analytics. These data are set to show like that by default, if you wish to understand more about your generated data such as page views, unique page views, etc.

You will have to deploy the use of the secondary dimension to find out more detailed information from the presented data. Some of such information that is provided by the secondary dimension include whether your website visitors are new or returning, the browser version used by the visitor, and the gender of the visitor if your website requires such information.

The secondary dimension of Google Analytics provides all such clarity to clients and website owners.
It is important to note that the Secondary Dimension in Google Analytics has the same limitation as to the Primary Dimension: it only provides the top 10,000 results per query.

That said, there are more than 200 dimensions in Google Analytics from which you can choose your Secondary Dimension. Secondary Dimension is used to include additional information to clients’ data reports. A secondary dimension can be used to thoroughly e your data by adding a new dimension to any standard report. Secondary Dimension is usually available in most standard reports and is rendered render as a drop-down menu.

You can add as many as four secondary dimensions to your report, this should be done only if you have in-depth knowledge of the working of Google analytics.
Secondary dimensions are essential to understanding your data in Google Analytics.

A secondary dimension is an additional data point to view along with the primary dimension. As a user of the service, you can add a secondary dimension to your report which allows you to gain more insight into the data generated by your website or platform and an understanding of your target audience.

For example, if you are considering the time of visit to your website by users, you may want to add data to be collected aside time as location, and type of browser as a secondary dimension. This helps you to determine where visitors to your website are visiting from and the time they visited.

How to Use Secondary Dimensions in Google Analytics?
Using secondary dimension in google analytics is more than essential as it enables you to look at data reports more specifically. Secondary dimensions can be used in Google analytics in several many ways and pattern we would take a look at some ways of using the secondary dimensions of Google analytics. Steps on how to use the secondary dimension in Google analytics.

Step 1. To use the secondary dimension of Google analytics click on any report where a graph is displayed, on the Google analytics service platform and then select Secondary Dimension from the drop-down menu in the upper left corner of the screen.
Step 2. A pop-up window will appear, and then you can type in your desired secondary dimension which you would like to add to your report graph.
Step 3. After selecting the dimension of your choice, you then click the apply button, which will allow you to able to see your new data displayed on the graph.

Advantages of Secondary Dimension in Google Analytics
The secondary dimension in Google Analytics has several advantages, that make the service very popular. Some of the advantages of Secondary Dimension include;

Step 1. Secondary dimensions provide more detailed reports in Google analytics
Step 2. The secondary dimension points to specific data and helps in the generation of specific
Step 3. The secondary dimension helps in critical decision making given that it stops
Step 4. Secondary dimensions help you to have insight into, user behaviour, time spent on any given website
Step 5. With Secondary dimension, you can find information regarding subjects using keywords

Disadvantages of Secondary Dimension in Google Analytics
The secondary dimension is very beneficial to the Google analytics service. But there are a few disadvantages of Secondary Dimension they are included;

Step 1. The secondary dimension has one major disadvantage, the secondary dimension creates several pages of adding data files into the report making the report bulky.
Step 2. The addition of multiple values can lead to a second dimension producing rows or columns that are data empty.
Step 3. With the continuous increase in data stack as done by secondary dimension over time analysing data becomes a hugely daunting task.

A secondary dimension, in Google Analytics terms, as we have looked into. We have seen the potential and results produced by using the secondary dimension. You may want to go ahead and add those secondary dimension features to your website. The key to good data quality, especially when it comes to business, is accurate measurement and analysis, this is what the secondary dimension offers as we have seen.

As you may have noticed secondary dimension is not different from Google analytics, but the second dimension is an advanced section or feature of the Google Analytics service as we have discussed above.

By Shaun