Michael Wiegand // Feb 11 2011
I cannot lie – The prospect of taking the Google Analytics Certification Test intimidated me. I know my way around Google Analytics well. I counsel clients. But Google has this way of concocting test questions that are just odd enough to make you question your answers. Would there be lots of questions on the code snippet? Questions about cookies? What about filters?
Now that I’ve passed the Google Analytics IQ Exam I’d like to help you and share what you need to focus on while you study for the Google Analytics Certification Test.
Pay attention not only to what cookies Google Analytics uses, but the duration of those cookies. Use cases of how visitors convert after returning to the site after a long absence are crucial.
Filters that manipulate which subdomains and folders show up in a given profile, or filters that effect how URLs are displayed in the Top Content report. How URLs can be renamed is important here.
The exam covers auto-tagging, applying cost data and use cases from AdWords visitors. It’s no surprise – as Google’s always trying to get you to spend money on ads. Bone up on how the two products mesh and the capabilities of reporting on AdWords data within Google Analytics.
Knowing how to tag your campaign, which variables are required when building your UTM codes and where to find the information in the Google Analytics reports are crucial.
There aren’t many questions on it – but you could certainly be fooled if you don’t know when to use Event Tracking vs. Goal Tracking.
That should sort you in terms of study topics for the Google Analytics Test, but the most daunting part of this exam is the portion where you’re given 4 or 5 choices and asked to choose all that apply or 2 that apply. The problem lies with the answers themselves – they’re all pretty plausible! Make sure when you study, you look at a given topic at all angles.
Don’t worry too much about the Google Analytics IQ Exam – about 20 of the 70 questions are astonishingly dumb. It appears Google wants to spot you some answers for your $50 trouble.
In fact, if the other 50 questions weren’t so sketchy, I’d question why I paid for it. To give you an example, one of the questions was: What is a visit? Okay, that question wasn’t actually on the test – but it was a question of similar mind-numbing stupidity.
Just lighten up a little, do your best on the tough questions and you’ll be alright.
In 12 years as a marketer, Michael's experience has run the gamut from design, development, direct mail, multivariate testing, print and search. But his new flame is analytics. Outside of work, he enjoys the finer things: cooking, JRPGs, music and whiskey - in no particular order. Read More