Home Blog Getting the Most Out of Google Data Studio: Inside Rio SEO’s Local Manager

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Proving ROI has consistently been named one of the leading challenges marketers face over the last four years. As evolving consumer behaviors have driven increasingly complex and voluminous marketing data, the pursuit of comprehensive reporting has resulted in too many marketing organizations ending up with unmanageable stacks of tools. These point solutions may be great for their specific purpose but often require time-consuming workarounds to integrate as part of the stack.

Google Data Studio is one such solution that converts data into visually appealing, informative reports that are easy to share with internal teams and understand. On its own, it’s a powerful tool that helps marketers quickly and easily visualize, manipulate, and configure data. But as with so many other solutions, Google Data Studio is most effective as part of a larger, more comprehensive whole that gives its visualizations context and meaning.

This is precisely why we built the Rio SEO Open Local Platform for seamless integration and customization. You can learn more about the platform as a whole here, however, in this post we’ll share with you one specific integration that is favorited by Account Directors, enterprise clients, and agency partners: Google Data Studio.

Showcasing, activating, and socializing enterprise local insights

Simplifying the complexities of enterprise local reporting remains a priority for organizations as we head into 2021. In keeping with that theme, the ability to integrate Google Data Studio within Local Reporting helps marketers:

  • Share important information about local marketing performance and trends with local owners, franchisees, and other stakeholders who are not as savvy with marketing data analysis.
  • Combine multiple data sources for a more robust, accurate view of local marketing performance without having to export from those sources.
  • Make better use of analytics data from multiple sources including Google and Omniture by combining them all in one platform.

Maybe you have a robust Google Analytics report you’d like to share with the organization. This integration means no more exports; you can pull in those existing reports and slice the data in whatever ways work best. You can upload data from other sources too, such as Adobe using spreadsheets. 

As workflows are increasingly digital and automated, marketers are being challenged to bring equal parts creativity and analytical skills to the job. Integrations like this empower you to produce powerful business intelligence for your organization, and you don’t need to be a data scientist to do it. Like a drag-and-drop web builder or Canva vs. the Adobe Suite, Google Data Studio is a powerful tool that makes it easy to distribute insights to the team. 

Tom Lynch, an Account Director here at Rio SEO, is a frequent user in the Local Manager platform and customizes reports to meet his enterprise brand clients’ unique needs. 

“It’s a great tool for client representatives like myself, and for agency representatives or in-house team members. The beauty of it is it’s a lot simpler to do recurring reports once the displays are set up than it is in other programs such as PowerPoint,” Tom says. “You have more real estate to tell the story; working in an 8-1/2 x 11 portrait vs. the smaller 16:9 space in PPT, leaving more room and time for fully phrased insights, for example. There are plenty of starter templates to get you going, and users can fully brand the color scheme to their company or client’s colors and style. Not having to recreate the deck graphics and tables each month saves me time.”

Users can set permissions to facilitate easy sharing across the organization. If you have Write permissions you have the ability to add new content; with Read permissions you can see what channel managers have chosen to share with you.

Agencies benefit from the flexibility of Google Data Studio as well.

“From an agency’s perspective, the biggest benefit of Rio’s Local Manager platform using Google Data Studio is it turns a client’s local data into informative, easy to read, easy to share, and fully customizable dashboards and reports,” said Pat Fallon, Director of Agency Partnerships at Rio SEO. “An agency is always striving for a simple way to holistically view their client’s local SEO data and the GDS integration allows that to happen. Agency team can now communicate and act on the customized data – no more boring static reports.”

An easier way to explore marketing trends across locations

Just as a high-level view is key, the ability to spot trends at the local level is important for enterprise brands.

“One display I like is the ability to embed a Google map and display any data about reviews or ranking, geocoded by location,” Tom says. “It helps my clients easily spot any performance trends by geo if there are any; for example, ‘Florida’s ratings are much higher than the rest of the country. What are they doing differently there?’”

Users can import an Excel file, use Google sheets, or use any one of several native connections like Google Analytics or Search Console.

What’s more, the Notes feature gives users the ability to embed any number of different assets from Microsoft, YouTube, and other online sources, as long as they have an embeddable URL. Native connectors directly within Google products. Examples of reports available in the notes section include YouTube, any of the Google Drive formats (Sheets, Docs, Slides, etc.), any of the Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, PPT, etc.), blogs, and more.

Want to learn more about custom local reporting for multi-location brands and enterprise organizations? Get in touch with your Account Director or check out these additional resources: