[ Updated Nov 7, 2023 ]
TL;DR If you want to jumpstart your reporting, simply swipe our free Google Data Studio YouTube template. For more tips on how to build a report from scratch and analyze your data, keep on reading.
Have you ever watched a video from a competitor on YouTube and wondered how they got all their views and engagement?
After all, you and your team probably spend hours on producing high-quality videos. You also promote your YouTube channel everywhere, from social media to emails. Then why aren’t you seeing the same results?
My guess is you don’t yet have a clear idea of what works for your audience and how to allocate your resources accordingly.
The solution: YouTube analytics.
That’s why today, I’m going to show you how to build a YouTube report on Google Data Studio.
If it sounds like your cup of tea, then let’s get right into it.
How to build a YouTube report
Step 1: Know your goals
Don’t fall for the “X YouTube metrics that really matter” trap. What works for others may not work for you. The metrics you measure should always depend on your goals.
And since you’re here, I believe you already know what you want to achieve on YouTube and have an action plan for it. (If not, please take a moment to define your goals and come back to me when you’re done. Don’t worry, I’ll wait.)
Now make a list of your goals. Do you want to build brand awareness, increase engagement, or drive more sales?
For example, if I’m just starting a new channel, my goals can be:
- Increase my YouTube channel awareness
- Engage with my audience
Step 2: Choose your metrics
When it comes to choosing YouTube metrics to track, the more, the messier. Pick a few metrics that align with your goals and help you understand your performance. Good metrics should:
- Tell you if you’ve achieved your goals
- Tell you what you can do to improve your performance
If you want to measure awareness, performance metrics like video views, average view duration, subscriber growth are good metrics.
If you want to measure engagement, pay attention to likes, comments, and shares.
If you want to measure revenue, you may find estimated revenue, or estimated ad revenue as the best metrics.
Back to my example. Since I want to drive awareness to my channel, I’ll want to know if there are lots of people watching my videos and how much time they’re spending on watching my videos. I’ll then track:
Video views: The number of times people have viewed my videos — the more I have, the better my YouTube SEO ranking will be.
Average view duration: This is calculated by total watch time/total video plays (including replays). A higher average view duration means that my audience finds my video useful.
Estimated time watched: How much time my audience spends watching my videos.
Subscriber growth trend: The number of subscribers I’ve gained and lost over time.
I also want to engage with my audience so I want to see what my engagement metrics look like and where my subscribers come from. That’s why I’ll track:
Likes and dislikes: The number of likes and dislikes on my videos.
Shares: The number of times people have shared my videos.
Video views by traffic source: Where my traffic is coming from.
Video views by device type: Which devices people use to watch my videos.
Video views by country: Which countries (or states) my traffic comes from.
Step 3: Build your report
After you have a list of metrics you want to track, it’s time to put them together in a report. If you’re looking for a tool that offers flexible data visualization options and easy sharing, I would strongly recommend Google Data Studio.
The great news is you can use Supermetrics connectors to pull all the data you want to Google Data Studio and build any types of reports you want.
Think about what types of charts will best present your data:
- Scorecards to present the key numbers
- Sparkline charts to show evolution
- Bar charts to compare or rank values within the same category
- Maps to visualize how your data is distributed
Psss, if you want to learn how to create a badass marketing reporting dashboard, check out this article for 4 key tips. Now let’s take a look at this YouTube channel dashboard.
In this dashboard, I use scorecards to show the most important metrics like video views, average view duration, and shares. I compare the numbers to the previous period to see if they’ve grown or declined and by how much.
Next, I use sparkline charts to see how my estimated time watched, likes, and dislikes have evolved over time.
To see how many subscribers I’ve gained and lost over time, I use a line chart.
Finally, I use a map to understand where most of my subscribers come from.
Step 4: Analyze your data
Data is nothing but plain numbers unless you analyze and take action on it. Look at your key metrics and think about how they’ve changed overtime. Is there a pattern in the change? Why did something change? Is there anything you can do to improve your performance?
For example, if my video views are declining, I might be able to improve by:
- Optimizing thumbnails and video description
- Grasping viewers’ attention with a short and engaging intro
- Grouping videos to relevant playlists
- Inviting guests to your videos
By looking at the video views by traffic sources, I can see how people have found my channel. Is it from paid campaigns or organic social? I can use this insight to allocate my efforts and budget on the channels that work.
If I want to use ads to attract more subscribers, I can use views by country data to guide my targeting decision.
If my engagement rate is low, I might be able to improve it by asking my subscribers to share their opinions in the comments.
How to get started with the YouTube channel template in Google Data Studio
And finally, I’ll show you how to use the YouTube channel template.
After opening the template, click “Use template” in the top right corner.
Next, you’ll want to connect to your YouTube account, so it can automatically pull your data.
To do that, simply click on the drop-down menu and choose “Create new data source”.
Then on the connector gallery page, search for a connector called “YouTube by Supermetrics.”
Connect and authorize all the ad accounts you want to get data from. Then, click “Connect.”
(Psst! Authorizing the data source will automatically start your free 14-day trial of Supermetrics for Data Studio)
After that click “Add to report” → “Copy report.”
And that’s pretty much it. Your YouTube channel overview report is now ready. ?
If you want to share the report with anyone from your team, simply click “Share” and add their email addresses.
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