2 Replies Latest reply on Dec 12, 2018 10:33 AM by Benjamin Barlow

    Google Analytics - No Longer Extracting Old (2+ years) Data

    Benjamin Barlow

      In 2016, I built a comprehensive set of Tableau Desktop dashboards using Google Analytics data since February 2015.


      In late 2017, I started seeing some older data disappear. Now in late 2018, the data only goes back to March 2016.


      Since this is a venue website, I am really interested in comparing new events to all of the events going back to February 2015.


      When I log into the Google Analytics platform, the data from 2015 is complete and still accessible.


      I have tried various troubleshooting filtering techniques in the Data Connections to try and "spur" Tableau Desktop to pull the missing 2015 data.


      I have a sneaking suspicion that this is a Google Analytics API filtering, but I cannot find any details about this being a common occurrence with the API. Therefore, I wanted to pass this by the Tableau Community. Even if it is a Google Analytics API mechanism, please point me in the direction of that documentation.



      - Should I still be able to, using the current Tableau Desktop Google Analytics connector, pull that 2015 and early 2016 data?

      - Is this apparent limit done by Tableau or Google Analytics?

      - What documentation exists that I can use to further investigate?

        • 1. Re: Google Analytics - No Longer Extracting Old (2+ years) Data
          Patrick Van Der Hyde

          Hello Benjamin,


          you are correct that the API on the google side will restrict the amount of data that is transfered.  We document thsis ere - Google Analytics


          Are you calling a GA for all of the data for the last 3 years at one time or are you running an incremental extract?   I pull data for our own community forums site in GA but I use Tableau Server and the incremental extract feature of Tableau to update the data each day. 


          Do you have GA 360?  If so, you shoud be able to link BigQuery to your GA property and access the data this way as well.  This topic is discussed in Solution #4 here - https://www.lunametrics.com/blog/2016/07/20/unsampled-google-analytics-data-in-tableau/


          I hope that helps.



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          • 2. Re: Google Analytics - No Longer Extracting Old (2+ years) Data
            Benjamin Barlow

            Indeed, I had been calling GA data for the last 3 years at one time.


            I plan on exploring the GA 360 route.


            What I ended up doing is using an old saved .twbx file with the 2015-2016 data, unpacking it, pulling the .tde into Tableau Prep, unioning with newer data refreshed in a .hyper file to get the big picture. This is also awesome in the sense that I had a fairly complex blending to an Excel file that now I can do simple joins to


            The refresh for new data requires refreshing a Tableau Desktop Data Source, pulling the new .hyper file into Tableau Prep and executing the flow, but that is actually quite painless in comparison to dealing with only the last 2 years of data.


            Tableau Prep, although still limited in data connections (no GA yet) and simple in scope, fills a huge gap.


            The only problem with this solution is that if I want to start using an attribute that I hadn't pulled in the old 2015-2016 .twbx, then I have completely lost Tableau access to the old data. That's why I am really interested in breaking the direct Google Analytics-to-Tableau dependency with the possibility of GA 360.