Table filters are a powerful tool in Google Analytics. They allow you to perform in-depth analysis within the interface framework, Based on the experience one can confidently say that many users of Google Analytics don’t know how to effectively use this feature thus passing on amazing opportunities provided hereby.
Most reports in Google Analytics have a single parameter and several standard metrics set by default. However it’s easy to add an additional parameter to the report – see the screenshot below. In this case table filters can really help you to sort reports and their key elements, such as metrics and parameters, far more effectively.
In this article we’ll discuss the issue of table filters and some contributing factors in more detail.
View filters VS Table filters
First let’s make sure you understand several key terms and definitions.
View filters are used before Google Analytics saves data into your account. They can be set up from the administration panel so that they would be applicable to all data in the view upon set up. We will not discuss this further, since you can find all the necessary information in the Google Analytics user’s guide.
Table filters work differently, as they represent special segmentation filters. Unlike view filters, they won’t permanently affect the information contained in reports in any way. To some extent they’re similar to Excel filters. There are two types of table filters:
- Standard filters that allow to filter data in your report using any single parameter.
- Advanced table filters. They’re more powerful and allow to filter data using all parameters and metrics available in your report
You should now better understand the difference between various filters in Google Analytics. But just in case let us show the following comparison as well.
Good knowledge of regular expressions is very convenient when working with both types of filters. We strongly advice to at least study these basics.
Filtering reports using advanced table filters
Follow the steps below to create advanced table filters in Google Analytics:
- Click the “More” hyperlink located next to the search bar.
- Select a filter.
First level: include or exclude
Second level: parameter or metric
Third level: type of conformity
Fourth level: filter area
- (optional) filter two parameters simultaneously.
You will be able to filter using two different parameters at the same time if you add an additional parameter to your report (as shown on the picture). As we can see, in our case we have both “Browser” and “Source / Medium” added to the advanced filter area in our Google Analytics report.
Please note that advanced table filters are limited to parameters and metrics included in your report. Google Analytics accepts regular expressions in both standards as well as in table filters.
- Make sure you understand the difference between view filters and table filters.
- When working with data, ask yourself: “What problem do I need to resolve?”.
- Advanced table filters provide an excellent tool that filters out anything irrelevant before the report is exported or presented.
- Begin with using one or two advanced filters, adding more as necessary.
- Make sure that there is sufficient data on a parameter level to reach statistically sound conclusions.