Integrating Google Products

Google offers some awesome services, most of which are free, that can be used by small businesses and large corporations alike. If you are a savvy marketer, you are integrating Google products and enjoy the convenience of a single sign-on to manage your programs easily. If you are in-charge of your companies digital marketing presence, implement the ideas outlined below, and save time, money and aggravation in the future.

Gmail

It seems that almost everyone is familiar with Gmail. If you own an Android device, you are basically required to have Gmail. I recommend that you establish a new Gmail address that you will use exclusively for your Google services. I propose an account address such as company_name.digital@gmail.com to make it clear to everyone for what purpose this account is used.

Here's why:

  • One ID and one password for all of your Google services
  • All notifications can be found in one place
  • No clutter in your work email inbox.
  • Centralized ownership of all of your other Google services. Agencies and contractors come and go. You will not lose access to any of your properties or your data if you enforce the use of this account.

I suggest that you set up your Google alerts to arrive in this inbox as well.

My Business

This service is for more than just a mom & pop shop to appear on Google maps. Here's why you should claim you location(s):

  • Add your official logo to your profile
  • Add the link to your website
  • Add vetted photography to your listing
  • Add posts about events
  • Update your business hours

If you are advertising on AdWords, your locations can be used to trigger powerful geo-fenced ads on mobile devices.

You will receive a monthly report from Google showing you the number of impressions that your business received, how many clicks to your website and the number of phone calls that were made to your business from the listing (on mobile devices).

While you will need to verify that you 'own' the business using an email on the company domain, you can manage the business listing from your new Gmail address.

Search Console

Formerly known as Webmasters Tools, this gem is overlooked by many in the digital space. If you are not already using it, here is why you should:

  • Site settings help you define your default URL (do you want Google Search to display with/without www. and whether http:// or https://?)
  • Submit XML sitemaps
  • Research your organic search keywords, clicks, impressions, position and click-though!
  • Send organic search data to Google Analytics by linking accounts (with your one Gmail account)

Google Search Console is indispensable if you are putting together a keyword plan, launching a new website or monitoring the health of your website.

Google Analytics

It is 2018 and everyone is familiar with Google Analytics. The important take-away here is that you should use your Gmail account and decisively claim ownership of the Analytics account and the properties associated with it. By having all of your Google services 'linked' with one Gmail account, you can easily ensure that Search Console and Ads data is being reported in the most detail possible.

Do not let agencies, consultants or contractors walk away with your data! If your history is in "one of their accounts", there are still workarounds to make it accessible.

Google Ads (AdWords)

Linking Ads to your Analytics account is easy and will enable you to see campaigns, ad groups and keywords in Analytics. If you are tracking conversions, this should be implemented to drill into cost-per-acquisition values.

I like the idea of a centralized AdWords dashboard that summarizes the advertising spend of a company with global reach. The only downside that I can think of is that the Analytics default page of a property without a program will display the total dollars spent for the property if linked to AdWords. Fortunately, that info box is below the fold.

Google Tag Manager

If you are not a developer, you may not have heard of Tag Manager, which is a 'container' for code for Google and other services. This tool is not for the faint of heart, because you do need to understand code in order to use it effectively. By using Tag Manager, you enable Google's 'data layer' and the powerful and bullet-proof data features that it enables. Ask your development team more about this powerful product.

Summary

Integrating Google products is more than an administrative task. If you are shepherding your company's digital marketing efforts, it is a good investment of your time - maybe it will not seem that way in the short run, but it will pay off. Remember, even if you have different sign-ons for your products, you may add your new Gmail account (with admin privileges) and eventually delete your old sign-in. Make sure everything is linking in the new Gmail before deleting the old.

I have been using Google products for over 10 years, and am pleasantly surprised when Google products keep getting better. Let me know what you think and if I missed anything in the comments below. Thank you for your time.

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