Why YOU Must Control Access to Google Analytics

Got this email today from a law firm who has asked us for help because they think their marketing investment might not be worth the spend:

Thank you for taking time to speak with me yesterday.  I requested Google Analytics access from our marketing company and received this response.  Any thoughts?
“The analytic platforms we use are through our private accounts and house all our marketing/seo clients on it. Thus, we are unable to provide individual access for clients to view.”  

AHHHHHHHHH!  This makes me so mad.

Yesterday in reviewing her site we looked into the code and yes, GA was installed (albeit poorly – it was missing on some pages). The only possible conclusions are:

  1. The agency in question is stupid – has inherited the site, doesn’t know GA was already installed, never considered installing it and has genuinely chosen a proprietary reporting system that lumps access across multiple sites into a single log in.
  2. The agency in question is smart – is doing 4/5 of nothing to work on the site and is deliberately hiding data so they can keep cashing their checks.  Oh – and they’d be lying about not being able to grant access to Google Analytics.

Unfortunately, lawyers asking for access (especially admin access) to Google Analytics is often the first step tipping off an incumbent agency that they may be on the chopping block.  Sadly, some immediately turtle up – withdrawing as much as possible and trying to control their own clients information, passwords and access.  That’s what we have here.

Remember attorneys, this is your site, it is your data, it is your performance, it is your prerogative to hold your agency’s feet to the fire.  Google Analytics data (and access to it) is yours to control.  Biggest red flag for any agency is the refusal to share data, let alone putting clients in control of it.