Since our previous Google Analytics users and sessions discrepancy Q&A article was so popular, we decided to write a new Q&A post, but this time focusing on Search Console.
So in this post, we will try to answer the questions we got regarding Search Console (GSC), linking it to Google Analytics (GA) and the various metric discrepancies that occur between them.
List of questions:
- How can I link my Search Console property with Google Analytics?
- I am not able to link Search Console with Google Analytics
- How to connect 2 Search Console properties to a single Google Analytics property?
- GSC shows 0 clicks but Google Analytics reports that Google / organic source generated about 1K sessions for that time period. Why I am not seeing this traffic in Search Console?
- I have moved my site from HTTP to HTTPS and created a new HTTPS property in Search Console but Google Analytics stopped showing data. How can I get data back in Analytics?
- How to associate a Search Console domain property with Google Analytics?
- Google Analytics – Search Console discrepancy: GA reports 25% less sessions from Google Organic than GSC clicks.
1. Q: How can I link my Search Console property with Google Analytics?
The first step in connecting your Search Console property with Google Analytics is creating and verifying the URL prefix property. You can verify it by uploading an HTML file on your site, by adding a HTML tag on your homepage, by using your Google Tag Manager or Analytics accounts or by associating a DNS record with Google. The easiest way to verify the ownership of a Search Console property is to upload an HTML file on your site or to add the HTML tag on your homepage.
Pro Tip: When entering the URL of your website, make sure to add the HTTP protocol that corresponds to your site as GSC treats HTTP and HTTPS URL’s as different pages.
After verifying your GSC property, assuming that you have “Edit” permissions at the property level, in Google Analytics, go to Admin / Property / Property Settings and click on “Adjust Search Console” button.
On the next page, click on “Add” and select the newly created GSC property. And now your Google Search Console property should be linked with Analytics.
2. Q: I am not able to link Search Console with Google Analytics
In order to link Search Console with Google Analytics, you need to have “Edit” permissions at the property level in Google Analytics and admin permissions in Search Console. Once you have these permissions, you can link the 2 platforms.
Another reason why you might not be able to link GSC with GA is not having a URL prefix property. This usually happens when users create a verify a domain property without a URL prefix property. So if this is the case for you, make sure you create and verify a URL prefix property before linking your GSC with GA as you can’t link Domains Properties with Google Analytics. You can only link URL prefix properties.
3. Q: How to connect 2 Search Console properties to a single Google Analytics property?
Unfortunately, connecting multiple Google Search Console properties to the same Google Analytics property is not possible. Only one GSC property can be connected with a GA property.
4. Q: GSC shows 0 clicks but Google Analytics reports that Google / organic source generated about 1K sessions for that time period. Why I am not seeing this traffic in Search Console?
A reason for this discrepancy might be that you have linked the wrong Search Console property with GA. Make sure that the URL and the HTTP protocol of your property matches exactly with the site where Google Analytics is installed.
5. Q: I have moved my site from HTTP to HTTPS and created a new HTTPS property in Search Console but Google Analytics stopped showing data. How can I get data back in GA?
Your question suggests that the Google Analytics / Search Console linking is not working. When you have moved your site from HTTP to HTTPS, have you created a HTTPS property in GSC? If you did, have you added it to Analytics? If not, you need to go to Admin / Property / Property Settings and click on the “Adjust Search Console” button, from the bottom of the page. In there, delete the old linking and add the newly created HTTPS Search Console property.
6. Q: How to associate a Search Console domain property with Google Analytics?
At the moment, linking a Domain Property from Search Console with Google Analytics is not supported. So you will have to create a URL prefix property in order to link it with GA.
7. Q: Google Analytics – Search Console discrepancy: GA reports 25% less sessions from Google Organic than GSC clicks.
When comparing the data from GSC with Analytics, it is very important to keep in mind that they are different platforms that use different metrics. Google Search console tracks visitor’s views and clicks on Google search engine while Analytics tracks pageviews and other user activity on your site.
With this in mind, here are some possible reasons for the discrepancy between what Google Search Console and Google Analytics report:
- Tracking is not installed on all pages – In this case, GSC will register the click while GA will not register the session; You can check if the tracking is installed correctly with the help of a debugging extension such as Google Analytics debugger or hire on of our Google Analytics experts to check it for you;
- Users are using ad-blocking extensions – In this case, GA will not fire and those users will not be tracked by Analytics while in GCS, the click will still show;
- Filters used in GA – Using filters which are excluding some users who come from Google might cause discrepancy between the data reported by the two platforms;
- Analyzing the data from a verified domain property in GSC – If you are analyzing the data from a GSC domain property which includes data from the subdomains, while in GA you are analyzing the data just for the main domain without the subdomains, then the reported data will most likely not match.
These were some of the most common questions we got regarding GSC and GA. If you have other questions regarding these 2 platforms, feel free to post a comment below.
If you are experiencing some discrepancies between Google Search Console and Analytics and you are suspecting it might be because of a tracking issue, we are offering an in-depth, Google Analytics site audit in which our experts will check if your Analytics is installed and configured correctly.