How to set up accounts for Google services such as Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager, Google Ads and Google Search Console
There are many factors to consider when deciding which email address to use when setting up third-party service accounts such as Google’s suite of products:
- Above all, security of the account should be paramount.
- Use strong passwords and consider who you share them with carefully. Also consider how these accounts might be used in the future. Do you need the account to be transferable within your business?
- Ownership of the account and it’s data is also crucially important. The last thing you want is to lose all your historical data or have to restart accounts because another party “walked away” with the ownership. We have seen this happen several times with clients coming in from old digital marketing agencies.
Instructions for setting up basic Google services accounts:
- Google Analytics: https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1008015?hl=en
- Google Tag Manager: https://support.google.com/tagmanager/answer/6103696?hl=en
- Google’s Search Console: https://developers.google.com/search/docs/beginner/get-started
- Google Ads: https://support.google.com/google-ads/answer/6366720?hl=en
- Google Data Studio*: https://support.google.com/datastudio#topic=6267740
- It is important to note here that Data Studio does not have its “own” account creation process, but rather is associated with a Google Account. It makes things easier if you create reports in Data Studio with an email associated with your Google Analytics account.
Which email account to use can be important!
There are several reasons why which email account you use to set up these accounts can make a big difference.
- Whichever email address you use to set up the accounts will be the default owner of the account and will have all the rights and privileges afforded to the ownership. This can typically be changed in the future if needed.
- Using a dedicated email address will make it easy to share with potential agencies, third-party providers or internal staff without exposing a personal or business account to unwanted access. For example, when you share the email address with an agency, they would not be able to also access any of the emails associated with a personal or business account.
- The email address you use can be a central point of truth when needing to check on the accounts independent of an individual account. This reduces the need to track down the owner of the accounts or deal with transfer of ownership if a team member were to leave the company.
Create an email address using the website’s domain name, such as analytics@[client-domain-name].com
- Make sure this is a Google registered account. (https://support.google.com/accounts/answer/27441?hl=en )
- Allow access to this account to the consultant so that they can make any needed changes or make the needed changes yourself.
- Use an individual team member’s email address to set up the accounts.
- Again, using the domain name of the website associated with the account.
- Eg jsmithe@[client-domain-name].com.
- The use of the domain name can be helpful at a later date to verify the ownership of the account if unforeseen access problems arise.
- When setting up individual accounts like this, the user should not associate it with a Gmail account otherwise the Gmail email address gets populated in user management lists instead of the company-based one.
- Create a general Gmail account to use for setting up the accounts.
- Eg. [clientdomainname]@gmail.com
Ultimately you want to create and use email accounts that are going to be easily organized, accessed and used by those people that need them. Over the years I have seen many cobbled together ad hoc account creation “solutions” and associations that have eventually led to major administrative headaches. If you take a little time to plan out your strategy and think long term about their future usage it will make for a happier and healthier overall digital marketing strategy.