Google Search Console (GSC) and Google Analytics (GA) allow you to gather very valuable data about your website, especially regarding traffic. Both tools provide a platform to analyze the data (especially GA), but sometimes you may want to merge the data provided by GA or GSC with the data from other sources, like a crawl or server logs; or just dive deeper into details.
In cases such as this, a data export from Google’s tools becomes an absolute MUST.
Limitations of native exports
Google Analytics allows users to export data visible on the screen with a simple press of a button.
The catch is: You may only see 5,000 rows of data at a time, and the default is only 10 rows.
Google Search Console also allows for data export, but the limit is even lower – in this case it’s 1,000 URLs or Queries.
For many website owners, 5,000 rows is laughably low. So, what do you do in such a situation? There are three ways to resolve this issue:
- Use API (application programming interfaces)
- Use third-party software
- Use Google Data Studio
API is a great and flexible solution. The drawback? You need to develop your own application to take advantage of it, which takes time and resources. Here is how to use APIs with GA, and with GSC.
Third-party software, in most cases, constitutes an API-based solution that’s ready to use. It may take the form of an Excel plugin or a standalone app. The drawback? You may need to trust a third-party app with your Google Analytics credentials. This might not be optimal for some. Also, it may need to be a paid service. Analytics Edge is an example of such software.
The third and (probably) easiest solution is to use reporting from Google Data Studio. Data Studio is free, developed, and maintained by Google, and connects to many data sources, including Google Analytics and Google Search Console.
Google Data Studio export explained
If you’re interested in the third option, here’s how to use it.
- Go to https://datastudio.google.com/overview and log in with the Google account with access to the data you want to export.
- Create a new dashboard.
- Create a new data source.
- Select the data source you want to export.
- Authorize access to the data source.
- Select the property that contains the data to export and then choose the Tables (in the case of Search Console).
Which one should you pick?
Site Impression covers Site-level metrics: Clicks, CTR, Impressions, and Average position.
URL Impression has fewer metrics: Clicks, Impressions, and CTR, but allows for per-URL splitting of the data.
OR Select the account, property, and view in the case of Google Analytics.
Finish this step by pressing Connect in the top-right.
- Accept the default fields by clicking Add to Report.
- Add a Table for your report.
- Configure the Table. The three important things are: Dimension (Controls the first column of the table), Metric (Controls the second column of the table), and Data Range (Controls the data range). You can add multiple Dimensions and Metrics for granular data.
- When the table contains the data you need, go to View mode:
And download the data.
This way, you can download all the data directly.
Exporting data from GA and GSC with the help of Data Studio is painless. Once you set up a report, it doesn’t go away and you can re-use it for annual exports.
Also, you don’t need to worry about third-party companies accessing your data, as it comes directly from Google’s ecosystem. For the most advanced users, direct API implementation provides more flexibility, but the Data Studio method is sufficient for most of us and it’s waaaay simpler.