Google Analytics Integration

Updated: Aug 25

Integrating with Google Analytics can give you insight into your guest's interaction with Retreat Portal.


You'll require an account with https://analytics.google.com


Once logged into https://analytics.google.com click the Gear/Admin link in the bottom left-hand corner, then click the Create Account button.

Give the account a name. This could be 'Retreat Portal' or something more specific to your center. Scroll down and click Next.

Give the property a name. Don't worry too much about that the word 'Property' means - it is a terms used by Google Analytics. In this case I named it the same as the account. It can be changed later. Be sure to also set the proper timezone. Click Next.

You can optionally provide your business details. Click Create.

Agree to the terms of service.


You will then have to select where your data is coming from. Select Web.

Next you'll be asked to setup a 'Stream'. Again, don't worry too much about the term being used.

Enter the URL to your Retreat Portal site, e.g. <org>.retreatportal.com.

The name of the stream cannot be changed later. For simplicity you can use the same name as the account and property.

Click Create Stream

The next page will show you the Measurement ID. It starts with a G-. Copy down the value.


Open your Retreat Portal Console, e.g. https://<org>.retreatportal.com/console


Click the Gear icon in the top-right and select Account.

Click 'Global' in the left-side menu. Enter the Measurement ID (the one that starts with 'G-') in the 'Google Analytics Code' section. Then click Save.

Your Retreat Portal site is now hooked into Google Analytics.


NEXT: Verify integration with Google Analytics


Log into Google Analytics (https://analytics.google.com)


Be sure your Account, Property and Stream are properly set - see the top-left of the page. And then click Realtime.

In a new browser or browser tab go to your Retreat Portal site where your programs are listed, e.g.: https://<org>.retreatportal.com


You can navigate around a bit, then look at your Google Analytics page. After a few seconds your realtime view should say there is at least one active user on the site... that's you!

The title of the pages being accessed are also reported.


Unfortunately, if you just created your Google Analytics code, then the historical data won't exist and even the realtime data won't appear for today just yet. You have to wait at least 24 hours for the data to appear.


So... come back in a day or two to continue the tutorial.


NEXT: Interpret data in Google Analytics


Important - Remember it can take 24-48 hours after configuring Retreat Portal for you to see data in Google Analytics.

Also... - This is only a very brief overview of using Google Analytics to get some very basic information about visitor behavior. There is a LOT more to learn about Google Analytics which is outside the scope of this tutorial.


Log into Google Analytics (https://analytics.google.com)

Be sure your Account, Property and Stream are properly set - see the top-left of the page.


Learn about how visitors reach your programs...

Click Reports, then expand Acquisition and click User acquisition.

The report on the page will default to showing how first time users reach your Retreat Portal pages. The image below only shows 'Direct' access which means they entered the URL to Retreat Portal on their own (or copy/pasted from another source like an email).


There are several other types of sources which may appear:

  • Search - i.e. from a Google Search

  • Referral - i.e. from your website

  • Email

  • Social

  • Other Advertising

However, it is important to note that a lot goes into how Google categorizes this information and there are more advanced methods of getting more detail. For example, Google Analytics may interpret a click from an Email to be something else.


Learn where visitors spend their time...

Click Reports, then expand Engagement and click Pages and screens.


The report on this screen will show you which pages (using the page title) visitors have been accessing and, in some cases, how much time they spend on each page.


Depending on the visitor's browser configuration the time spent on pages may not be reported so don't interpret '0m00s' to mean no time was spent on a page. It may simply mean their browser's privacy is hiding such information which is normal and becoming a lot more common.


Wrapping up...

The above two pages are great starting points to leveraging Google Analytics to learn how visitors reach your programs and program listings as well as learning which pages get the most traffic.


There is a lot more information that Google Analytics can reveal, but use caution as there are no absolutes and the data is imprecise as browsers start to be more protective about security and privacy. When the data is taken holistically you can get a good pulse of what your visitors are doing and how they are reaching your Retreat Portal site.

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