Posted October 31, 2012 8:31 am by with 0 comments

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While I write about many facets of the digital marketing space I readily admit when I am out of my league and truly understanding Google Analytics is one of them. For all of my good intentions I have not gotten the training necessary to truly get the most from the tool.

As a business person though I can appreciate when anyone talks about tracking ROI more effectively. That is what a new feature of Google Analytics, the beta Cost Data Import tool, is helping analytics users to do.

The Google Analytics blog reported yesterday

Google Analytics has been a great place to analyze the performance of your Google advertising programs, but a piece of the puzzle has been missing: analyzing return on investment across all your digital channels. That’s why we’re happy to announce our new Cost Data Import tool, now available in public beta. This tool allows Google Analytics users to import their cost data from any digital source — such as paid search providers, display providers, affiliates, email, social and even organic traffic.

Your imported cost data can be viewed in two places: in a new report called Cost Analysis in Traffic Sources, and in the newly publicly available Attribution Modeling Tool. These reports show you how all your digital marketing channels are performing compared to each other, so you can make better decisions about your marketing programs.

There is a self-service API option and independent application providers are part of this process as well and the early reports from the blog are glowing. Of course they are, silly! It’s Google’s blog!

Has anyone been using this tool? What has been your experience to date? Are you anxious to give it a try? it will be rolling out to everyone over the short term so let us know what you find and if your experience is good, bad or indifferent.