UB's Universal Analytics Initiative

Track usage and performance of your online assets using UB's Universal Analytics.

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Questions / Comments?

Contact the DCT Help team.


University Communications is implementing a university-wide Universal Analytics program to help all UB offices gain a better understanding of how our marketing activities drive audiences to our online properties, and then how people engage with them once they get there. By harnessing powerful Google tools, and consolidating our analytics accounts into one master account, we are now able to see data from virtually all of UB's web sites. Working with our pilot partners in the School of Architecture & Engineering and Enrollment Management, and an experienced consultant, we are developing dashboards and templates that will help us all to easily and effectively measure our marketing and communications. 

Our strategic goals are:

  • to seamlessly and holistically track usage metrics across all UB online properties,
  • to streamline access to and visualization of usage data so we can all make informed decisions quickly and effectively,
  • to create easy-to-use dashboards that help all UB offices--regardless of skill level--to track and interpret usage data and measure it against key performance indicators (KPIs).

Working with our pilot partners in the School of Architecture & Engineering and Enrollment Management, and an experienced consultant, we are developing dashboards and templates that will help us all to easily and effectively measure our marketing and communications effectiveness.

We encourage all UB Web Leaders to monitor performance of their online assets using UB’s Universal Analytics platform, which includes Universal Analytics (aka Google Analytics), Google Tag Manager (GTM) Google Data Studio (GDS). 

Gather & Analyzing Data: Universal Analytics (UA)

UB's new master Universal Analytics (UA, formerly called Google Analytics)  property is recording usage metrics such as unique online visitors, sessions, time on page and how our visitors move through our ecosystem, as well as information about visitor themselves. UB users have access to Google Analytics dashboard templates that help you track the information they need.

Tracking Traffic and Behavior: Google Tag Manager (GTM)

For more sophisticated analytics, for purposes like tracking specific behaviors or traffic generated from an ad campaign, for instance, we now have an institutional Google Tag Manager (GTM) account with a set of common tags, and triggers that are easy to clone and resuse for your campaigns.

GTM is a code injector and tag management tool that makes ie easy to send different pieces of data to Google Analytics (e.g. pageviews and events) without having to know JavaScript.

Using GTM we are now able to track conversions and other user metrics at a more granular level. 

Visualizing & Reporting Data: Google Data Studio (GDS)

We are also making Google Data Studio (GDS) available enterprise-wide. We're in the process of building a set of standard reports, widgets and highly visual dashboards that will be made available to UB units. GDS reports are highly customizable and easy to distribute.


  1. Analytics assessment & planning (COMPLETE)
    • Understand our current environment: what is and is not being tracked and what analytical tools are available.
  2. Master Universal Analytics property setup (COMPLETE)
    • Create a single master portfolio for all of buffalo.edu, to collect all "UB" usage data and provide units with custom views, segments, filters, goals and dashboards.
  3. Site-wide GTM tracking (IN PROGRESS)
    • Map UB's subdomains; set up views; apply master GTM code to all UB sites; and create dashboard templates.
  4. Pilots: School of Architecture & Planning and Enrollment Management (IN PROGRESS)
    • Analyze marketing strategies and target audiences of pilot units and configure corresponding views and dashboards;
    • Develop custom GTM tags and triggers, dashboards and segments
  5. Comprehensive training (COMPLETE)
    • Provide in-depth analytics training to pilot teams, record training sessions and make available for subsequent units.
    • Training topics include: Overview & Basics; Events & Goals; Filters & Segments; Reports, Dashboards & Tools; UB’s GTM Container; Tags, Triggers & Variables; Auto-Event Tagging & Data Layer; UB GDS Reports; Building a Report; Filters, Segments & Data Sources; Beyond Google 
    • For now, these resources are available through this Google doc.
  6. University-wide rollout (UPCOMING)
    • Where possible, transfer dashboards and data from old accounts to new master UA property; create new views and dashboards; and onboard nbew partners.


Before Requesting Access

Please confirm that your pages have our master GTM container code.  On your home page, right-click to 'View page source' then use 'Find on Page' to look for GTM-T5KRRKT. (And take note of any other GA-, UA- or GTM- codes.) If you do NOT see our GTM- code, contact the DCT Help Team.

Universal Analytics (UA-1499965-70)

A master UA property has been created to manage all university analytics data and views. (This code is used by the Google Tag manager, and is not actually listed on your pages.) UA data is available to all UB units, using our request access form.

Units may request these levels of access:

  • Read/Analyze
    • Most users need only this level of access. This level of access gives you the ability to see report and configuration data; manipulate data within reports (e.g., filter a table, add a secondary dimension, create a segment); create personal assets and share them, and see shared assets. Cannot collaborate on shared assets. 
  • Collaborate
    • Create personal assets, and share them. Collaborate on shared assets: for example, edit a dashboard or annotation. Includes Read & Analyze.  

Google Tag Manager (GTM-T5KRRKT)

UB's master GTM code pulls data directly into our Universal Analytics platform and has been added to all UBCMS websites as well as most official websites operating outside the UBCMS.

Access to UB's GTM container is granted using our request access form.  

Units may request these levels of access:
  • READ
    • This is available to any UB unit or agency partner, and provides view-only access to the container, including browsing workspace drafts, opening tags, triggers, and variables, but not being able to edit them. Users with this level of access can Preview container versions but cannot preview workspace drafts.
  • EDIT
    • This access is available to trained UB users with a formal analytics strategy, or their agency partners, with the approval of a senior communicator. Users with this level of access can create workspaces and edit assets within those workspaces, but they cannot Create Versions or Publish those workspaces. These users CAN Preview workspace drafts.
    • This is the same as Edit Access, with the additional ability to Create Versions out of workspace drafts.

Once access is granted, a folder will be created specifically for your school or business unit.

  • All Tags, Triggers and Variables must be placed in this assigned folder.
  • Please do not make changes to anything outside your folder.
  • Please restrict your Triggers to just the relevant pages (e.g. engineering).
  • Once you are done adding tags, notify the DCT Help Team that there are changes that need to be reviewed and published. The DCT Help Team will respond within one week.

To maintain the integrity of the university-wide GTM container, publishing of tags, triggers and variables will be done by University Communications.

Frequently Asked Questions

We already track usage. What's the value in joining UB's master account?

If you are not pulling analytics from UB's master Universal Analytics property, you are only seeing a sliver of the actual traffic related to your website. The master property is set up to track ALL traffic through ALL of UB's official web pages, so this account has the most comprehensive data available to you, as well as continually update tracking of on-page events, such as downloads, on-page links, video plays, etc.  Finally, as we mature this platform, you will gain access to valuable templates for dashboards, segments and goals - all of which are complex to set up and maintain on your own.

We will be contacting you to discuss integration of your efforts with the master Universal Analytics project. Please contact us before you add additional codes to your Web pages, and for the UBCMS, before you adjust or remove existing codes as you may unintentionally lose valuable data!

If you already have a Google Analytics or Universal Analytics account, or your content is outside the UBCMS, please contact the DCT Help Team to discuss integration with the master project.

Should we set up our own analytics tracking?

There is no need. UB already has its GTM code on all UBCMS pages and most Web pages outside the CMS. And all UB units can request access to view the master Universal Analytics property where you can get help to set up dashboards, segments and goals to compile the reports. Going forward, this will be far simpler and your data will be far more complete with UB's master platform. Furthermore, there are practical limitations on the number of codes that should be placed on each Web page. 

Please do not add additional tracking codes to UBCMS sites. Having more than one GTM- or GA- code on your pages can corrupt your data. Contact the DCT Help Team for more details.

How do we know if we already have Google analytics?

If you are not actively using one of the versions of Google analytics, you probably do not have an account. But contact us and we can tell you if we are aware of any legacy tracking.

Meanwhile, we are in the process of cleaning up any legacy accounts. Over the years, these have become dense with unused, out-of-date, or superfluous properties and permissions. To make finding active properties easier for users, several properties have been renamed. In rare cases, when nothing has been tracked in two years, properties have been removed. Other properties that are no longer pulling data or that are not current have been renamed with 'ARCHIVE' but are still pulling data in case they are needed for historical data. No other changes have been made to these properties.

We only really need to track a few simple things. Can we do that?

Please let us know what you want to track and on which websites on this request access form. We will set up a simple dashboard for you.

We still need to add/adjust the analytics codes on our site

If your site is in the UBCMS, our master GTM-T5KRRKT tag should already be on your pages. This is now a routine part of the site creation process. With this in place, your site's usage data is automatically tracked with UB's master Universal Analytics portfolio. We can give you access to use the master data we collect that spans the entire university.

If your site is outside the UBCMS, please add UB's master GTM-T5KRRKT tag to your pages. Once that step is done, we will set up cross-domain mapping and a corresponding view or dashboard for your use. Then we can give you access to use the master data we collect that spans the entire university.

Please do not add additional tracking codes to UBCMS sites. Having more than one GTM- or GA- code on your pages can corrupt your data. Contact the DCT Help Team for more details.

I need older data, from several years ago. Can you help?

UB began tracking web analytics "universally" in spring 2017 by installing a master Universal Analytics code on all UB CMS websites (GTM-T5KRRKT; UA-1499965-70). Prior to that time, another GTM container was widely used (GTM-PRK43Q). UB is transitioning units away from this old account, removing it that old code from UBCMS websites gradually. Most of the accounts and properties in that account are still available but are not currently pulling data. If you need data prior to spring 2017, please contact dcthelp@buffalo.edu for assistance. If we have access to the account, we may be able to pull historical data for you.

However, many UB units set up their own individual analytics accounts to which University Communications does not have access. To find historical data or other information from these accounts, you will need to locate the account originator/owner directly.

NB: Google Analytics data for the UBCMS prior to May 30, 2012 will include statistics from both the authoring and live environments and therefore will not accurately reflect public websites usage. This will disproportionately affect smaller, less trafficked sites. Learn more about this Known Issue

How do I learn more about UB's Universal Analytics and Google Tag Manager?

You can find lots of training designed specifically for UB users, as well as general analytics training listed in this Google doc.

Requests or Comments

Please enter your comments or concerns below. We will endeavor to respond within two business days.


Last updated December 21, 2017