This post looks at using Qlik Cloud (using a paid-for tier) to gather and analyse data from Google Analytics.
Qlik Cloud doesn’t allow user-added extensions, connectors or alterations (unlike the Qlik Sense Desktop and Enterprise products), but is free at the basic tier where you can load from uploaded files. As mentioned, I am using a “Plus” account which gives me access to more connectors.
With my account, there are a couple of built-in connectors available on Qlik Cloud if you don’t want to manage your data yourself. The one I’m using today is the “Google Analytics (BETA)” connector – obviously if you’re using Qlik Sense Desktop, QlikView or Qlik Sense Enterprise you’ll have to make a choice (more on that at the end).
Go to the data load editor (or add data) and use the “Qlik Web Connectors” option – this provides a growing list of connectors, more are promised over time. Note that this covers the two most popular social media platforms…and Google Analytics!
Jumping into the “Google Analytics (Beta)” option, the page updates to give you a single option – which is API access to your signed in Google account. No setting up access or setup of keys from within your Google account required!
This opens the Google login or access page and details what Qlik needs to connect.
At this point, things are a little less seamless. It takes you back to a Qlik site (the connectors site) and provides you with a Qlik-side authentication code. We’ll have to copy this and paste it into the connector for now – perhaps this will be simplified in the future.
Hit authenticate and it should pull your account information (removed from mine below, sorry). Test the connection and you’re good to go!
The new connection is available from the Data Connections panel. This appears to be per-app at the moment (rather than shared across your account and all your apps).
And we’re connected! Google has a brilliant set of APIs and developer resources, which mean you have a lot of control about how you pull the data. Have a look at the Dimensions and Measures documentation for a glimpse at what you can pull down.
You’ll find that in the Qlik data load process you are presented with five “tables” – these are not typical database tables but rather five ways of accessing the data in Google Analytics:
- Accounts – lists the Google Analytics accounts that your Google account has access to (accounts contain multiple profiles)
- DataFromQueryURI – allows you to enter a query string directly, once you’ve built it on the Query Explorer
- DataFromTemplateQuery – gives you access to some pre-built top queries (such as “Visitors and Pageviews over time”, and “Visits by Country”)
- WebProfiles – this returns profiles, which sit under properties
- WebProperties – this returns information about your individual websites, applications or devices
You can also use the Query Explorer Tool to help you piece together what you need, it’s quicker than doing it in Qlik Sense directly if you’re new to the Google Analytics platform as it has syntax helpers throughout the tool. You can then copy the parameters back into Qlik Sense to actually load the data.
One other thing to note – Qlik Sense Desktop and Enterprise don’t have this connected included by default, although they do have the Qlik REST connector if you want to piece together API calls yourself. The Google Analytics connector is a paid-for product on these platforms via the Qlik Web Connectors package.
I’ll pull some data and have a look in a later post.