Google Analytics basics for WordPress, Drupal and Joomla!

Analyze this

In an earlier post, we covered the basics on how to get Google Analytics™ set up on any kind of website. But what if you’re not on a handcrafted site, but instead are using a content management system (CMS)? Happilly, Google Analytics is widely supported by the major content management systems of WordPress®, Drupal™ and Joomla!®, and third parties have developed many plugins and extensions for Google Analytics. Here are a few to get you started on nailing the Google Analytics basics:

Google Analytics for WordPress

Google Analytics for WordPress

Google Analytics for WordPress by Yoast is a free plugin for tracking many different kinds of metadata. It’s the granddaddy of WordPress plugins for Google Analytics, with more than five million installs. Check out three of its key features:

  • Simple installation through integration with Google Analytics API
  • Use of the asynchronous Google Analytics tracking code, Google’s fastest and most reliable tracking code
  • Outbound link and downloads tracking

Here’s what Erica Mueller had to say about it:

“One of my favorite plugins right now is the Google Analytics dashboard for WordPress. … I love that it allows me to see what our readers are interested in.”

Google Analytics for Drupal

Google Analytics for Drupal is a free, actively maintained module that integrates Google Analytics into your Drupal site. With it, you can add these and many other statistical features to your site:

  • Single-, multi-, and cross-domain tracking
  • AdSense™ and site search support
  • Custom code snippets

A related module is Google Analytics Reports for Drupal, which provides graphical reporting of your site’s tracking data. Graphical reports include an administrator’s dashboard widget.

Site Analytics for Joomla!

There are dozens of extensions for Joomla! that support Google Analytics. Ones such as GAnalytics and Asynchronous Google Analytics — which leads the reviews charge at 44 with an average five-star rating — are free options that both enable integration of a Google Analytics tracking code as well as provide interactive charts to your Joomla! site. Here’s what Zoldar had to say about Asynchronous Google Analytics:

“This is one of the little plugins that you wondered how you survived without it. Easy to install and easier to use!”

There are a number of other options as well, but starting down any of the threads here should get you going down the right path.

In need of a platform? GoDaddy’s Managed WordPress makes it easy to integrate with Google Analytics.

Christopher Carfi
A veteran of both startups and the enterprise, Chris has a deep track record in developing customer community and evangelist programs for brands such as Adobe, H&R Block and Aruba Networks while holding executive positions at Ant’s Eye View and Edelman Digital, and he was co-founder and CEO at Cerado. He currently lives in the Bay Area with his family.