There are a variety of add-ons and built-in functions for seamlessly and automatically pulling business data into Google Sheets from external sources.
Once business data is in Sheets, it can be manipulated an analyzed in a number of ways.
Here are six functions and add-ons for importing information into Google Sheets. All six are free of charge.
Blogs and News Feeds
Social media marketers are continually looking for fresh, audience-relevant content to share on social channels.
The IMPORTFEED function can be used populate sheets with feeds from:
- Google Alerts
- Google Blogs
- Any other RSS or Atom feed
A WordPress blog URL can simply be appended with /feed.
For Google Alerts, the URL should be appended with ?output=atom. There’s a link to the RSS feed URL at the bottom of each Google Alerts email notification.
The HYPERLINK function can be used to add links for social media accounts such as Twitter and social media management apps such as Buffer. Here is a video that shows the setup process:
For the G Suite Updates blog, the URL should be appended with ?output=rss.
The add-on allows a Salesforce user to import data into one or more sheets. Based on the objects (up to 5), fields and filters that are selected, a SOQL query is constructed. The query can be edited.
Users with appropriate permissions can update and delete records in Salesforce from a Google Sheet.
Google provides an add-on for Google Sheets that is simply called Google Analytics.
With this add-on, many of Google Analytics’ dimensions and metrics can be used to pull data into Google Sheets.
Once the data are in Sheets, custom calculations can be performed.
For example, to compare the performance of a popular blog post to the number of times the call to action (CTA) in the post was clicked, configure Pageviews and the CTA Event for a date range, aggregate the data on a single sheet using formulas and then chart the results.
Charts in Google Sheets that are derived from Google Analytics data can be embedded in Google Slides, Docs or Sites for internal sharing and/or presenting.
Google Search Analytics
Regularly importing Google Search Analytics data into a Google Sheet using an add-on called Search Analytics For Sheets is a great way to see what actual search queries are creating impressions on site content in the Google search results. When determining what keywords to optimize content for, it is helpful to understand what people are actually keying into Google Search.
For example, here is a snippet of Google Search Analytics for this site, filtered for queries that contain the word “spreadsheet.” The sheet is also sorted descending by number of impressions.
The scheduler allows for Google Search Analytics data to be automatically pulled into Sheets at the beginning of each month.
Since formatting the raw sheet each month is a repetitive task, a Google Sheets macro can be used to format and sort the new sheet with two clicks.
While there are plenty of online sources for viewing charts of securities data, the GOOGLEFINANCE function allows for creating customized charts.
Sheets allows for comparing two or more stocks in the same graph.
An HTML Table
The IMPORTHTML function allows for importing table data from a web page.
For some table data, it may be easier to find and reference an internal Google Sheet than to find and return to the source page.