Arbitrary limits on Google Analytics

Yesterday I hit what appears to me to be a completely pointless and arbitrary limit on Google Analytics.

Whenever we create a website on behalf of a client I also create them a google analytics account (under my account). This adds value to all of our clients, who probably wouldn’t know to ask for analytics software, and also helps answer the inevitable questions of “how many hits do I get?”. In the spirit of brutal honesty, it also gives us evidence when we are looking at upselling our web design clients to our search engine optimisation offerings.

Up until a while ago I used to add a new Website Profile to a single global analytics account. To better describe what I meant is a screenshot.

google-analytics.jpg

You can add multiple website profiles to each analytics account. The account is the drop down on the right, and the profile is the drop down on the left.

##Tying a Google Adwords account to a Google Analytics account

The problem with doing it this way is that you can only tie one Google Adwords account to one Google Analytics account. So if more than one website profile runs adwords you had better give them their own account. (This “feature” always seemed like a bug to me, and I haven’t investigated yet whether it is still the case.)

So in order to tie an adwords account to a website, the website needs its own Analytics account. No problem there, I’ll just make sure each new website I add gets its own account (click “create new account” at the bottom of the drop down menu on the right). If in the future that website wants to run adwords we don’t have to lose the (very important) analytics history we have built up (no you can’t migrate this - we asked).

So rather than taking up any more of your time, i’ll get to the point. **You are only allowed to create 25 accounts using a single email address**. So now that I have 25 websites, each with their own account I can’t add any more. The solution according to Google?

>you can only create up to 25 accounts using a single email address. In case you would like to create more accounts, you can consider using an different email address.

That’s right, you have to create another username to hold another 25 accounts. So 6 months down the line I’ll have have 3 or 4 usernames each with 25 accounts in them. When I want to view the analytics data I have to either remember which username holds the website, or login to each account, have a look until I stumble upon the website in question.

I don’t understand the arbitrary limit. I’d love someone from Google to explain why there is this limit, and either allow adwords accounts to be tied to a website profile within an analytics account, or give me some way (even if I have to request it) of upping the arbitrary limit.

Have a missed something? Is there a better way of setting up my account bearing in mind that we want to be able to tie any website to an adwords account? Or is this just “the way it is”?

Duncan Morris

Duncan Morris

Duncan founded Distilled with Will in 2005. He built the, now defunct website CMS from the ground-up, and consulted for some of the company’s first clients. Today Duncan leads the management team and helps to steer...   read more

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5 Comments

  1. Can you create new accounts with some random email address and then give your original email address administrator access? Or are you limited to admin access of only 25 accounts with one email address?

    reply >
  2. Hooray... A loop hole. You can indeed create another account and give you original account access. Which means you can see all your accounts under one login.

    So I now only have to use the second account as and when I need to add a new account. Still pointless, but not quite as bad.

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  3. Philip

    My My, I thus find the answer. I have 180 sites to manage, and the number is growing.

    It does make a challenge indeed.

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  4. The problem with the administrator approach is that you have to manually add the relevant e-mail address to the users list for the new account - yet another hoop you have to jump through to do what should logically be a very simple thing to do.

    The ironic thing is that the dropdown on the accounts page allows you to display 100 rows - kind of pointless with the 25 limit.

    It would be interesting to quantify how much time (and money) has been spent by companies and agencies because of Google's thoughtless actions.

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  5. Erm

    "It would be interesting to quantify how much time (and money) has been spent by companies and agencies because of Google’s thoughtless actions."

    Even more interesting to quantify how much time and money has been saved by the FREE services provided by Google.

    reply >

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