Filters for Google Analytics – What are your questions?

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June 26, 2007

ParadiseBefore I start (again) – this is the last reminder that the Criticize GA’s Documentation Contest ends on Tuesday the 26th. Which is probably today already if you are in Australia.

I have been doing a series on filters for Google Analytics, and am almost done. I have two more posts coming up, and then it feels like I have finished.

However, I read the Google Groups for GA and I can see that the combinations of problems people have are always amazing. So if you have a filters question that I haven’t answered yet — and it is not about cross-domain work, since that will be a different series — please send it my way. You can comment or send email to my last name at — whatever is easiest for you.

Robbin Steif
(see, there is all the info you need to send the email)

Our owner and CEO, Robbin Steif, started LunaMetrics ten years ago. She is a graduate of Harvard College and the Harvard Business School, and has served on the Board of Directors for the Digital Analytics Association. Robbin is a winner of a BusinessWomen First award, as well as a recent Diamond Award for business leadership. You should read her letter before you decide to work with us.

  • JulienSEO

    Hi Robbin,

    I use customised tags to link my Paid search data to GA ({keyword}&utm_content={creative}&utm_campaign=Laser_Printer_3_ON&Network={ifContent:Content}{ifSearch:Search}&SiteTarget={placement})

    I then want to analyse what are the typical path users are taking from my landing page (what do they do next). Unfortunately, GA then gives me a bunch of “different urls” for my landing page (/en/shop/index.asp?Network=Search&SiteTarget=&w=keyword A, /en/shop/index.asp?Network=Search&SiteTarget=&w=keyword B, etc)

    I was wondering if I could create a filter that takes off all the dynamic parameters from that url so I could analyse the behavior of all the paid search trafic going to that url?

    Thank you for your time,


  • Robbin

    Hi Julien. To answer the specific question: Yes, you can get rid of the dynamic parameters, but you don’t need filters for that. You can use the query string default abilities that GA provides when you set up each profile for this:

    If there are situations where you *want* those parameters, just set up a separate profile (always a good idea anyway) and use one profile with the query parameters deleted and the other one with them still there.

    Go ahead and post again if that wasn’t clear *or* if you were dying to use filters. (You could do a lot of Search and Replace work, but the simpler solution seems to be the better one.)

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  • Neil

    Hi Robbin,

    I know this is quite an old post, but hoping you might still be open to answering a question about filters.

    Within a GA account i have got a main profile which is a catch all and then other profiles of that same account which have filters at the profile level. These have been done to be able to provide a view of traffic to only particular sub-directories of the website, using the include only part of the filter options.

    However, there is another profile where i want to track a particular part of the website which does not have pages within one particular sub-directory. In fact in total i want to track the traffic to pages within three different sub-directories.

    I have created the three individual filters for these as part of the profile, but the problem is that i am not able to set it up so it can be any of these three filter rules. I mean what it does is combine them all in an order i can select, but that gives 0 as the result. What i am really needing is it to show traffic to any page which belongs to any one of these filters.

    Would you happen to know if this is possible to do?



    • Robbin Steif

      Correct – you can’t do three sequential includes like that. You have to use the | pipe, i.e. the regular expression for “or” so that you are saying include subdomainA OR SubdomainB OR SubdomainC, all in the same field. Like this:||


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