This is the third and final part of this blog series. In the first part we installed and customized the Google Analytics Reports module and in the second part we created a Social Media Dashboard that displays the data in table format using Views.
The dashboard that we created in the previous part displays useful information, but the real fun starts when we create charts to visualize the data and make them easily understandable to everyone.
Following a similar procedure as in the previous post, you first have to create different Views panes for every specific metric and then use Page Manager to display all of them together in the dashboard.
Unfortunately, the Google Analytics Views module does not still support the “Chart” format, so you have to use the Views Dataviz module. After the installation, there is a new “Dataviz” format in Views, which you can use to create the charts.
The Dataviz settings are really simple, allowing you to customize the chart display:
Grouping field: If your report contains multiple dimensions, you have the ability to group your chart by one or more fields and display it in a more meaningful way.
Type: From this menu, you can select the type of the chart. Depending on your selection, there may be a secondary menu with more options. For example, for the line chart you can select if you want line smoothing or not and for the pie chart you can define if the text on the pie slices will be a percentage, the actual value, the label of this figure, or just nothing. Usually, it makes sense to experiment with different chart types, trying to find the optimal way to present the data.
Width, Height: You can also define the exact width and height of every chart, or just leave it blank to use the default values.
Colors: In this field, you can select the specific colors for your chart, separated by a comma. Accepted values are hex colors (like #6495ED) and color names (like LightCoral).
Enable interactivity: This checkbox defines if the charts will be interactive or not.
So, by keeping the same field definition that we used in the previous post and changing the format from Table to Dataviz, you can easily transform your dashboard. For the specific reports that we built, I preferred to use the Pie Chart type for the three top ones, the column chart for the two next ones and the line chart for the last one. Of course, you can experiment with different types and decide what makes more sense for your case.
The final result can be seen in the following image:
Using Views to display Google Analytics data is the easiest way to do it, but sometimes it’s not that flexible. If you have specific requirements for a report, which cannot be created with Views, you can always write your custom code, using the Google Chart API module. There are some code examples on the module's documentation page. We will examine more complex use cases with custom code, in one of our future blog posts.