Best GA Tool Ever: The Change (Delta) Chart

May 12, 2008
By Robbin Steif

delta chart

Today, I want to write about the GA “change chart.” You might even call it, the delta chart. Or, the red and green chart (I am sure this chart has a great name, and I just don’t know what it is.)

Here is where the chart capabilities sit (see screen shot at left) the best kept secret in Google Analytics. Notice how it is in the far right of the GA interface, immediately below the graph and above all the lines of reporting. The red arrow is mine, and points to exactly which chart I am loving – because you can get the regular grid, a pie chart, a bar chart, or — ta da! — the delta chart.

When you click on it, you suddenly have data in context. For example, consider this site, engineering-education.com. They work in two areas, statics and finite element analysis. I can use the delta chart to compare how well certain keywords performed, as compared to the rest of the keywords on

keywords and GA

the site — like this the screenshot here. Notice how his branded keywords (mini FEA, minifea, etc) – and in fact, most things related to finite element analysis — do well, but a generic term like “engineering education” — which this site, would seem to want desperately — does not convert at all for FEA goals.

But that’s not all. No, that’s not all. (As the Cat in the Hat might say.) When you are in “compare date range” mode, the green and red bars automatically change to do a date comparison. So notice how referrals (in the screen shot below, which compares media this month with media last month) are just not working as well for this company as they d

referrals delta GA

id last month. On the other hand, organic is way up, as a conversion rate. So now they have the context to go drill down and understand why they are “doing better” in organic and “doing worse” in referral. (A bonus for the SEO guy?)

Well anyway, now you have seen one of my favorite charts in GA. Come to NYC and learn more at our training.

Robbin