About Social Plug-in Analytics

If you have Google+ "+1" and Facebook "Like" buttons on your site, it's important to know which buttons are being clicked and for which content. For example, if you publish articles on your site, you'll want to know which articles are most commonly "liked" or shared, and from which social networks they're being shared (for example, Google+ or Facebook). You can use this information to create more of the type of content that's popular with your users. Also, if you find that some buttons are rarely used, you may wish to remove them to reduce clutter.

The Social reports allow you to see how people shared content on your site via social actions. Examples of social actions on your site that can be tracked include Google+ +1 button clicks, Facebook "Like" and "Share" interactions, and bookmarks.

Set up Social Plug-in Analytics

No setup is required to track Google+ +1 interactions that occur on your site, but additional technical setup is required to track other Social interactions.

For details, a qualified developer should follow the setup instructions in the Developer Guide for your specific environment:

The changes you need to make depend on which tracking code you’re using. See if you have Classic Analytics (ga.js) or Universal Analytics (analytics.js).

A Note About Webmaster Tools Reports

If you also use Webmaster Tools reports for your website, keep in mind the following when using both Analytics and Webmaster Tools reports for tracking Google+ +1 interactions:
  • Google Analytics reports include only +1 interactions that occur on your website domain. Webmaster Tools reports on all +1 interactions for your content, regardless of whether the interaction occurs on your own domain, or on a search result listing.
  • Google Analytics uses JavaScript to track social interactions, which is a different mechanism than that used by Webmaster Tools.
  • Google Analytics data is updated more frequently than the data from Webmaster Tools.

For these reasons, the number of +1 interactions reported by these different tools will not always align.