Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Google is forthcoming with details of how analytics works, but they don't present it in a nerd friendly way. The data is wrapped up inside of videos instead of dumped as text. I may have been able learn this by watching the videos, but it was more fun figure it out by playing with it.
Summary of Google Analytics' Design
- All user data is stored in cookies on the visited site.
- No cookies are set on any Google Analytics Domain.
- Each user has a unique ID on each domain they visit.
- User data is transmitted back to Google Analytics in the query string when requesting a 1x1 GIF.
UML Sequence Diagram of Google Analytics' Design
Analyzing the pieces of Google Analytics Data
- Definitions of each of the utm* cookies
- Descriptions of the pieces of data in query string for utm.gif
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