Sayf Sharif

Sayf Sharif is the Analytics Department Lead, working with Google Analytics and specializing in Usability and Conversion. He has helped hundreds of businesses design, develop, and improve conversion on their websites since 1997. Things you didn’t know about Sayf: he’s biked from Pittsburgh to Cleveland in 32 hours, studied Archaeology in Graduate School focusing on human tool use, and feels the Oxford comma is more important than Jim apparently does.

How to Access Custom Dimensions in Google Analytics

September 10, 2013

“Give it to me. NOW!” – Veruca Salt, Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory If you are using Universal Analytics you may have heard something about Custom Dimensions. They’re the next evolution of Custom Variables. Regular Google Analytics users get 20 of them, while Google Analytics Premium users get a whopping 200 of them. I’m […]

Why Track My Videos – The Essential Guide

July 23, 2013


There is one enormous, overarching reason why every video you create should be carefully tracked. One reason so all-encompassing, so indescribably important, that its very definition denotes its value. That one big reason is money. Again, so we’re clear: anyone that looks to increase revenue, or to decrease costs, be it a business, non-profit, or […]

How to Easily Track video.js in Google Analytics

May 23, 2013

What is video.js? video.js is a free, fast, open source (licensed under Apache) HTML5 video player available at which was developed by video experts from Brightcove & Zencoder. It’s really easy to set up, but like most of these types of popular open source players, it doesn’t come with built in Google Analytics tracking. […]

Google Analytics Real-Time Dashboard Widgets

April 18, 2013


“This thing all things devours: Birds, beasts, trees, flowers; Gnaws iron, bites steel; Grinds hard stones to meal; Slays king, ruins town, And beats high mountain down.” -Gollum The answer to Gollum’s riddle was of course time. It devours all things. It doesn’t do it quickly, it does it drip by drip like water. Throw […]

Gaining Insight from the Locations report in Google Analytics using Designated Marketing Areas

April 1, 2013


“There are three things that matter in property: location, location, location.” -Various Attributations The saying “location, location, location” has been attributed to a few different people (primarily Lord Harold Samuel and William Dillard), with apparently no clear indication of who said it first, though the paper of record found the term “location, location, location” in a […]

Compensating for the "Streetlight Effect" Observational Bias in Google Analytics

March 4, 2013


Observational biases often infect analysis, and can convince businesses to make incorrect assessments of their website data. In 2010, David H. Freedman coined the term “Streetlight Effect” for an observational bias represented in an old humorous science anecdote. This Streetlight Effect can very easily affect the insight gained from Google Analytics, should you not be […]

The Power and Danger of Data Visualization

February 4, 2013


Recently, over the holidays with family, I participated in a conversation where I mentioned that the data supported my position. I made the mistake of saying “Statistically….” which as you might imagine, in a holiday family setting, is bound to generate at least one comment about how you can prove anything with statistics, and a […]

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