How to Add Google Analytics to WordPress

How to Add Google Analytics to WordPress the Right Way (2024)

Are you looking for instructions on how to add Google Analytics to WordPress? Want to know how people are finding your site, which blog posts are most popular, how many eCommerce sales you’re making, how many of your visitors are using mobile devices, and a whole lot more?

When you have data about how your users navigate your site, you can optimize it to get more traffic and make more money. The best part? All of the analytics data you need can be easily tracked and found using Google Analytics and MonsterInsights.

In this article, we’ll show you how to add Google Analytics to your WordPress site using MonsterInsights, the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress.

Add Google Analytics to WordPress without Coding

MonsterInsights is the best WordPress Analytics plugin. Get it for free!

Table of Contents

  1. Google Analytics + WordPress: The Basics
  2. Video Tutorial
  3. How to Add Google Analytics to WordPress
  4. View Your Google Analytics Metrics in Your Dashboard
  5. Google Analytics for WordPress FAQ

Google Analytics + WordPress: The Basics

Google Analytics can measure many different metrics on a WordPress website. You can turn WordPress into just about any kind of website, and Google Analytics can track it.

The way you use Google Analytics on WordPress will differ depending on what kind of website you have.

If you have a blog, maybe you’re most interested in which posts people are reading, how they found the posts (on social media? via a referral from another site? via Google search?), and if they’re clicking on ads or affiliate links.

If you have a business website, on the other hand, maybe you’re most interested in how many people are filling out your forms, how they’re finding your website, and which of your services are the most popular.

To connect Google Analytics to any website to track page views and all of your visitors’ behavior, you need to install the tracking code. The code should be placed in your header.php file just before the closing </head> tag in your header.

For beginners and many people without coding experience, this is not easy to do. Most WordPress website owners aren’t developers and don’t know how to work with code!

That’s where MonsterInsights comes in. Not only does the plugin make adding Google Analytics to WordPress a breeze with zero coding, but it also adds crucial tracking features to help you understand how people are using your website and a whole Google Analytics dashboard right inside your WordPress admin.

MonsterInsights seamlessly integrates with Google Analytics 4 (GA4), giving you the ability to view your GA4 reports in a super easy-to-understand way.

Video Tutorial

How to Add Google Analytics to WordPress

Step 1: Download MonsterInsights

Normally, you’d have to insert your Google Analytics tracking code into your WordPress website’s code.

But with MonsterInsights, you don’t need to worry about using any code.

MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress. It allows you to easily connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics so you can view all the data that matters most right in your WordPress dashboard.

MonsterInsights Home Dashboard

Plus, with the click of a button, you can set up sophisticated tracking features such as event tracking, eCommerce tracking, form tracking, custom dimension tracking, outbound link tracking, and much more.

To get started, head to the Pricing page and choose the license level that’s best for your tracking needs. Once your license is active, download the plugin zip file from your account page.

download monsterinsights

Just getting started with Google Analytics and not sure what your tracking needs are just yet? You can start with the most basic version of MonsterInsights for free.

Step 2: Sign In to Google

Now, you need to log in or sign up for a Google account.

To get started, you’ll need to open the Google Analytics website and click the Sign in to Analytics link or Start for free button in the top right corner of the page.

Sign in to Google Analytics

Next, you can log in to your existing Google account if you have one, or click the Create account link to create a new Google account.

Sign In to Your Google Account for Analytics Account

Step 3: Create a Google Analytics Property

After you’ve signed in to your Google account, click the Start measuring button on the next screen. click start measuring

Now, you’ll need to enter the Account name for your Google Analytics account. You’ll also see different data sharing settings, make sure you check all the boxes and then click Next.

GA create an account

Now, you’ll have to enter the property details of your website. Start by entering a name, select a reporting time zone, and currency.

To set up a GA4 property, enter your property name, then choose your time zone and currency. Click Next.

GA4 setup step 1

Choose your industry category and your business size, then click Next.

GA4 setup step 2

Finally, choose your business objectives. We suggest choosing Get baseline reports so that you get all of the Google Analytics reports populated in your account.

Google Analytics setup step 3

Click Create.

That’s it! You’re now signed up for Google Analytics. Next, we’ll add Google Analytics to WordPress.

Note: You do not need to move ahead to the create stream step – MonsterInsights will do that for you!

Step 4: Set up MonsterInsights

Navigate to the site where you want to install MonsterInsights and go to the WordPress admin dashboard.

Then navigate to Plugins » Add New and click the Upload Plugin button at the top.

Upload Plugin Button in WordPress

On the next screen, you can click the Choose File button to select the zip file you downloaded in step one. Then click the Install Now button to upload the file and install the plugin on your site.

Install MonsterInsights

Once the plugin has been uploaded and installed, you can click the Activate Plugin button to activate it on your site.

Activate MonsterInsights Plugin

After the plugin is activated, the plugin setup wizard will open to guide you through the setup process step by step.

At first, you’ll see the “Welcome to MonsterInsights!” message and options to choose the category of your website. There’re 3 options: Business website, Publisher (Blog), and eCommerce.

MonsterInsights Setup Wizard - Choose Your Website Category

Select a category that best describes your website, and then click the Save and Continue button.

If you want to skip the setup wizard, for now, you can click the Exit Setup button at the top.

In the next screen, you’ll need to connect MonsterInsights plugin to your website by providing your license key.

Enter Your MonsterInsights License Key to Connect with WordPress

You can find your MonsterInsights license key in your email receipt or your account area on the plugin website.

Once you enter your license key, it’ll verify your account, and then you can click on the Connect MonsterInsights button.

After that, you’ll see an option to connect your Google Analytics with your MonsterInsights account. Select your account to continue authentication.

Choose Your Google Account to Connect with MonsterInsights

Next, you’ll need to allow MonsterInsights the proper permissions.

Allow Google Analytics Permissions

After that, you’ll need to pick a profile to complete the connection. If you have multiple websites connected to your Google Analytics account, then you’ll need to choose the right website property here.

Choose your profile, and then click the Complete Connection button.

After that, it’ll finalize the authentication process in a few seconds, and then take you back to your MonsterInsights setup page.

Now you can see recommended settings for the Google Analytics plugin.

MonsterInsights GA Plugin Recommended Settings

This page includes some of the most important settings as the following:

  • Events tracking – Enabled by default.
  • Enhanced Link Attribution – Enabled by default.
  • File Download Tracking – Most used file types (doc, exe, js, pdf, ppt, tgz, zip, xls) added by default.

As you scroll down, you’ll see more settings.

MI Setup - second part

  • Affiliate Link Tracking – It has 2 affiliate link paths added by default, and lets you add more affiliate link paths.
  • Access to MonsterInsights Reports – You can choose who can see the MonsterInsights reports.
  • Automatic Plugin Updates – You can enable or disable the option to install updates automatically.
  • Show MonsterInsights Badge – Choose whether or not you want to show a MonsterInsights badge in your website’s footer. You’ll be able to access a few options for how this looks later.

Review and configure these recommended settings, and then click the Save and Continue button at the end.

On the next screen, you’ll see options for even more tracking options, addons, and helpful plugins.

Enable more website features in MonsterInsights

The first four items are:

  • Standard Analytics & Reports – The standard MonsterInsights reports you’ll get in your WordPress dashboard.
  • Enhanced Link Attribution – Can help you see where users are clicking on your site.
  • All in One SEO Toolkit – The best WordPress SEO plugin that integrates with MonsterInsights
  • Smart Form Builder by WPForms – The most popular WordPress form builder plugin

When you scroll down, you’ll find even more options:

  • Privacy Compliance Addon – Helps Google Analytics become compliant for GDPR, CCPA, and more
  • Advanced Reports – Get access to advanced reports inside MonsterInsights, such as search keywords, a real-time report, publishers and eCommerce reports, and more
  • eCommerce Tracking – Instantly enable eCommerce tracking
  • 20+ Advanced Tracking – Even more advanced tracking, such as author tracking, form conversion tracking, scroll tracking, and more
  • Advanced Growth Tools – Get access to our campaign URL builder, popular posts addon, and A/B testing integration.
  • Media Tracking – Enable embedded video tracking. See how many times videos are watched, how far they were watched on average, and more.

After that, you’ll see a new screen with this message ‘Awesome! Tracking and Analytics are All Setup’. It means the setup process is complete, and you’ve successfully installed Google Analytics in your WordPress site.

MI Setup success message

This screen also notifies you about when you can start seeing your website reports. Depending on the size of your website, it can take between a few hours to 24 hours. Don’t forget to click on the Finish Setup & Exit Wizard button.

Step 5: Adjust Enhanced Measurement & Data Retention Settings

Turn Off Enhanced Measurement

If you created your own Data Stream in GA4 (instead of letting MonsterInsights create one automatically), then you’ll need to turn off Enhanced Measurement. To do that, go to Admin » Data Streams, then click on your data stream:

Now, click on the switch to turn off Enhanced measurement.

Turn off enhanced measurement

After clicking the switch, a message will pop up asking if you’re sure you want to turn it off. Click Turn off.

Turn off enhanced measurement in GA4

Make sure you don’t have enhanced measurement on! MonsterInsights adds a lot of custom enhanced tracking, and leaving this on can actually result in skewed, incorrect data.

Change Data Retention Settings

By default, your data retention settings will be set to 2 months. If you want to be able to use your data in custom reports beyond 2 months (which most people do), go to Admin » Data Settings » Data Retention:

Data Retention settings in GA4

Now, use the dropdown to change your settings to 14 months:

Set data retention settings to 14 months

That’s it! You’ve successfully added Google Analytics to WordPress the right way.

View Your Google Analytics Metrics in Your Dashboard

As we mentioned above, it can take a few hours for Google Analytics to start collecting data. Wait for some time, and then you’ll be able to view your WordPress website reports right inside your WordPress dashboard.

A quick summary of the website analytics report is available in MonsterInsights’ dashboard widget.

MonsterInsights Dashboard Widget

To view the full reports, you’ll need to visit Insights » Reports from your dashboard. There, you’ll see the overview report first.

MonsterInsights Overview Report

Then, you can view all the other reports by clicking on the tabs/links at the top of the report. Here are just a few types of data you can track using the MonsterInsights plugin:

  • Top landing pages: Which landing pages are most popular on your site plus their bounce rate, conversion rate, and more
  • Link and button click tracking: Which links and buttons are getting the most clicks
  • eCommerce reports: MonsterInsights integrates seamlessly with the most popular eCommerce plugins for WordPress, including WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads, MemberPress, and more. Set up eCommerce tracking with a single click.
  • Search Console report: Connect with Google Search Console to see what keywords people are using to come to your site
  • Forms tracking: Which forms are getting the most impressions and submissions
  • Media tracking: Which of your videos are getting watched and how long people are watching them

Also, you can track advanced metrics like eCommerce transactions and custom dimensions easily with MonsterInsights.

In conclusion, MonsterInsights makes it super easy to add Google Analytics to WordPress, monitor user behavior, set up advanced tracking, make your site GDPR compliant, and view reports.

For a full tour of MonsterInsights, check out Your Ultimate Guide to MonsterInsights Dashboard Reports.

Add Google Analytics to WordPress without Coding

Google Analytics for WordPress FAQ

How do you add the Google Analytics WordPress plugin?

Follow these 4 steps:

  1. Download MonsterInsights
  2. Create a Google Analytics account or sign in to your existing account
  3. Install the MonsterInsights plugin via your WordPress dashboard and follow the setup wizard
  4. Adjust your data retention settings

How do you add Google Analytics to WordPress without a plugin?

To set up Google Analytics on WordPress without a plugin, you’ll need to add the Google Analytics code to the header file, right before the closing </head> tag. For a full tutorial on adding your tracking ID, check out Add Google Analytics to WordPress WITHOUT a Plugin.

You can also use Google Tag Manager, though setting it up and using it has a pretty steep learning curve and isn’t great for beginners.

Can I add Google Analytics to WordPress for free?

Yes! Install the free version of MonsterInsights by searching for “MonsterInsights” in your WordPress dashboard under Plugins » Add New.

Install MonsterInsights Google Analytics for Free - add Google Analytics to WordPress

Can I add Google Analytics to WordPress using Google Tag Manager?

Yes, you can use Google Tag Manager to install Google Analytics onto your website. It’s not something we recommend for beginners because of the learning curve, but it is possible! You’ll just need to install your Google Tag Manager code in WordPress, and create a GA4 tag:

Add GA4 to Google Tag Manager

For a full tutorial, check out How to Add Google Analytics 4 (GA4) to Google Tag Manager.

We hope this tutorial helped you to add Google Analytics to WordPress.

Here are a few more guides you might like to read:

How to Add a Contact Form in WordPress (The Easy Way)
MonsterInsights vs Google Analytics
Google Analytics 4 eCommerce Tracking Tutorial [WordPress]
16 Best SEO Plugins & Tools for WordPress (Reviewed)
7 Best Free Keyword Generator Tools to Master SEO

If you liked this article, then please follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube for more free tutorials, reviews, and Google Analytics tips.

Want to Try MonsterInsights for Free?

Enter the URL of Your WordPress website to install MonsterInsights Lite.

Comments

  1. Excited try this, but at the last step it won’t let me select my website. It’ll only let me select the alternative which is All Web Site…..

    1. Hi there,
      That’s the correct view. The default Google view for a website is called “All Website Data”. The heading name of the website is there for users who have more than 1 Google view per property and more than 1 property to help them separate their Google view/properties

  2. Hello MonsterInsights Team,

    I just try this plugin and setup very well in my website by reading this tutorial. It is really useful and working correctly.

    Thank you.

  3. I really appreciate this very complete step-by-step explanation…unusual to get something this good…thank you.

    1. Hi Dilan! Nope, if you follow this tutorial and use MonsterInsights, there’s no need to manually add the tracking code. MonsterInsights handles all that for you, so there’s no need to touch any code.

      1. What happens if you already have GA tracking code implemented on your site? Do you need to remove it? If so, do you lose your historical data?

        1. Hi there,
          Yes you’ll want to remove it. Your historical data is tied to your Google Analytics profile not the actual tracking code, so MonsterInsights will be reporting it’s Google Analytics data into the same place. Thus your historical data will be just fine, and from the point of view of Google Analytics’s reports, the newly collected data will go to the same place as your “historical” data, so on reports like session count it will appear as if nothing changed; the biggest change you will notice is you will be able to get more reporting out of Google, for example in the Top Events area we’ll start adding the outbound link click events (if you have that feature turned on) for example.

          -Chris

  4. Thanks for the explanation, but I still have one concern, if you can help me out. After we successfully set up your plugin, can we normally add new pages on our website? I mean, is the tracking code automatically inserted in all pages that we create after we installed MI plugin?

    Thanks

    1. MonsterInsights automatically outputs the tracking code on all pages/posts created before and after install of the plugin.

      1. And just one question. We have installed the code with MI plugin last week, and I thought that it worked normally. But now I see that we still can’t see age and gender reports. I clicked and confirmed all the needed things in property settings, but still nothing. In the code there is “displayfeatures” line, can this be the reason? I read that this line is not necessary anymore since it can just be toggled in property settings. Any help?
        Thanks

  5. If I already have Google Analytics setup on my website and am using another plugin for e-commerce tracking, can I just uninstall those plugins and install yours?

    1. Of course! Make sure to remove other Analytics plugin while using MonsterInsights. Otherwise, Analytics may double track your traffic.

      You should also try our eCommerce addon, which gives you all the data you need to optimize your eCommerce store for conversions.

  6. If I use your plugin to acquire the tracking code, who owns the google tracking code? Would I have access to the data accumulated to that traffic code (on the google analytics website) if for any reason I choose to delete the plugin? Or would I only have access to the data through my WP dashboard, and only as long as I have your plugin active and installed?

    1. Hey Yaron,
      Thanks for your interest in MonsterInsights and letting us know your concerns. If you decide to uninstall the plugin in future, you can still access your previous tracking data in Google Analytics. It won’t disappear.

      If you want, you can then set up Analytics natively and continue tracking your site without any issues. But you’ll definitely miss the cool tracking features MonsterInsights provides.

  7. I guess it took about 15 minutes before the code started to appear in the source code. It seems to be working now. Thanks for a great plugin guys!

  8. I am setting Monster Insights up for a client now and would like to know what I need the client to do on his end in order for me to authenticate the account. I have full access to the WordPress dashboard but not his GA account.

  9. Hi
    My administrator has installed MI on my Word Press website and I have set up Google Analytics and authenticated MI with my Google Account.

    I want to track outbound links clicked on my website. Do I simply look at the reports in Google Analytics or is there more that I need to do in MI on my website. Thanks

    1. Hi there,
      If you haven’t already you’ll want to turn on tracking for outbound links in MonsterInsights. Then you can view the results in Google Analytics following this guide if you’re a Lite user, and if you’re a Plus or Pro level MonsterInsights user, you can view the top links on on the brand new reporting dashboard for paid MonsterInsights users inside of WordPress on the Publisher Report.

  10. I’m trying to authenticate my monsterinsight but the popup at authentication doesn’t show the lower buttons (cancel and next, hence I’m stuck.

    1. Hi there,
      This is caused by a plugin conflict. If you can get in touch with us on our contact page, we’ll be happy to get you sorted out

      -Chris

  11. It seems there is no way to get a UA anymore. All new properties are automatically v4. There is no option for universal compatibility anymore?

  12. A question: does it matter if I checked Create both a v4 and a Universal Tracking id? I’m asking because it’s been more than 24 hours, and I’m still not getting any data. It’s my first time setting anything up anything like this, so I’m probably doing something silly.

  13. I did everything exactly as stated in the tutorial and it’s over 24 hours and the report isn’t showing

  14. I am setting up analytics for a new website. Do I need to install GA3 after installing GA4?

    1. Hey Chris! Thanks for your question. If it’s a new website, we’d advise to only set up GA4.

  15. This video is great,. I’ve had monsterinsights for a few years now but needed to setup GA4. I have followed your steps, however all of my previous data has now disappeared?

    1. Hi Natalie,
      Your Universal Analytics data will not be moved over into your GA4 property – to see it, you’ll have to open Google Analytics and go back into your Universal Analytics property. Google didn’t create any way of getting that old data moved over, so your GA4 property is like starting fresh without historical data.

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