Page Options in Google Data Studio

Adding Pages, Sections, Dividers, Headers, and Icons to Data Studio

Written by Conor Ross

Conor specialises in data visualisation, designing and creating bespoke data dashboards and automated reports with Google Data Studio. With a background in Psychology and Research Methods, he also works on projects focused on improving customer experience and website usability through A/B Testing and Personalisation in Google Optimize.
November 5, 2021

Page Options in Google Data Studio

Adding Pages, Sections, Dividers, Headers, and Icons

 

The structure and layout of your Google Data Studio dashboards are massively important aspects of data visualisation, as these provide the framework for users to navigate your reports. There’s no right or wrong way to do this, every dashboard is a unique case, but some recent updates to the platform provide even more tools in your arsenal when it comes to finding the right navigation layout for you.

 

Adding Pages to Your Dashboard

A common pitfall of creating dashboards is overloading the page with information. You might be looking to create a one-stop-shop for your reporting, but throwing everything onto a single page may lead to more problems than improved efficiency. Splitting your dashboard into multiple pages or sections can help to create a logical flow for the user, keeping each page straightforward and to the point, ultimately making the dashboard more accessible and streamline the process for forming observations and conducting analysis. It can even help to boost report performance and speed!

To add pages to a report, simply click on the Add Page button in the top left corner of the interface. Don’t forget to make sure you’re in Edit Mode, or you won’t be able to make changes to the dashboard. You can also click on the Page menu in the toolbar, and select New Page or Duplicate Page.

 

Add Page button on Google Data Studio the toolbar

Add Page button on Google Data Studio the toolbar.

 

If you’re working on a dashboard that already has more than one page, you’ll also have the option of using the Report Pages Menu. This is the new feature that significantly expands the options for how you want to present your pages in a report.

 

New Features in the Report Pages Menu

In months and years gone by, this would be the end of this guide, as there was nothing more to creating pages than adding a new page and potentially renaming it. *Cue dramatic voice* – Until now.

You’ll now notice that when you have multiple pages in a dashboard, you can no longer click on the Add A Page button seen above, but rather a Report Pages Menu opens on the right hand side of the interface, just as you’d normally see the component menu, reporting settings, or theme and layout options. Here, you’ll see a list of pages on your dashboard, and a colourful “+” button below. If you click on this button, you’ll add a new page to the list, but if you hover your cursor over the button, you’ll uncover further options; Add A Section, Divider, or Header.

Page Options in Data Studio

The new features available for page management in Data Studio.

 

 

How To Create Sections

The addition of Sections is a brilliant option for managing the structure of your reports, particularly for reports with numerous pages or clearly defined categories. You could even neatly host multi-page reports for distinct websites, domains, or even different attribution models on the same dashboard using this feature.

When you click on the Section option, you’ll see a new section appear in your page list. You can then drag existing pages into the section or add new pages within any given section. In this example, we’ve created a section of Google Analytics data, a section for Online Campaign reports, and a standalone page for commentary and insights.

 

Pages and Sections shown in the Report Pages Menu in Data Studio.

Pages and Sections shown in the Report Pages Menu in Data Studio.

 

The appearance of Pages and Sections in the tab layout for report viewers.

The appearance of Pages and Sections in the tab layout for report viewers.

 

There are limits to the number of Sections you can use however. This may sound a bit like something from Inception, but bear with us: A max of three levels are supported, meaning that you can have another section within a top level section, but you can’t drilldown further than this. The official documentation for Data Studio has a good illustration of this, even if it’s lacking a distinctive Di Caprio factor.

 

The levels within the page and section structure of a dashboard, from Google Data Studio.

The levels within the page and section structure of a dashboard, from Google Data Studio.

 

 

Adding Dividers and Headers

We’ve covered Pages and Sections, so that leaves Dividers and Headers. You can add these in the same way as you would create a new page or section, as well as the ability to drag them into place in your page list as expected. Dividers offer a simple visual break between different pages or sections, while Headers allow you to include notes or descriptions to the end user. You can hover over the Header while in View Mode to uncover the rest of the text.

Dividers and Headers in the page list on Edit Mode.

Dividers and Headers in the page list on Edit Mode.

 

How Dividers and Headers appear to the end user on Data Studio.

How Dividers and Headers appear to the end user on Data Studio.

 

Note: Headers will only appear when using the Left or Top Left navigation layouts, and won’t show if you’re using the tab-style navigation layout. You can change the navigation layout by clicking on Theme and Layout in your toolbar, and adjusting this in the menu, under Navigation Type.

 

Adding Page Icons

There is one final recently added feature found within the Report Pages Menu that we’re yet to cover: Page Icons! You can now include icons next to page titles to help improve the overall visuals of your dashboard, as well as making the dashboard even more accessible to users.

Page Icons on the tab navigation layout.

Page Icons on the tab navigation layout.

 

To add Page Icons, hover over a page or section on the Report Pages Menu and you’ll see an option button on the right hand side. This opens a further drop-down menu with with options to Rename, Hide, Move, and Select Icon. Once you click on Select Icon, you’ll be presented with the range of icons available. Simply click on your desired icon, and apply. If you’re stuck for ideas, try using the search bar or category drop-down menu to help find the most relevant icons.

Select Icon menu

Select Icon menu on Data Studio

 

Improvements to Page and Navigation Options

The additional features added to Google Data Studio’s page management and navigation capabilities are yet another way of helping you to create effective and efficient data dashboards. Don’t discount the impact of structuring your page layout and making your reports more accessible to all those who use them. As we always say, the more streamlined you can make your dashboard experience, the more time can be spent on the really important stuff like analysis and decision making.

For more on Google Data Studio, check out our other guides, including How To Use Filters and using Report Publishing and Draft Modes, on the GlowMetrics blog.

Please feel free to ask a question or leave a comment below, or contact us at [email protected]. You can also follow us on @GlowMetrics or subscribe to our newsletter for more tips and news within the world of Digital Analytics and Marketing.

 

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