What is a Report in Google Analytics?

Are you interested in learning about the structure of a Report in Google Analytics?

Follow this guide to learn in-depth about how reports are laid out in either a Google Analytics 4 (GA4) property or a Universal Analytics (UA) property.

Did you know? You can track into both a UA and GA4 property through ExactMetrics’ Dual Tracking feature (learn more about How to Set Up Dual Tracking).

Universal Analytics


A report is made up of at least one Dimension and a couple of Metrics.

  • Dimension: a qualitative measurement or attribute of your data. Examples: City, State, Country, Page, Page Title, Acquisition Channel, Referral page, etc.
  • Metric: a quantitative measurement. Examples: # pages viewed, average time on site, # of sessions, average session duration, Bounce rate, Conversion rate.

In any Universal Analytics Report, you’ll see the Primary Dimension on the left side, and Metrics data on the right, which populate the columns in a report.

Here’s an Audience » Geo Location report in GA:


To view more granular data, you can add an optional secondary dimension in many reports:


Here’s an example of the City Secondary Dimension selected in a report with a Primary Dimension of Country:


Google Analytics 4

In a Google Analytics 4 report, you will either view a detailed report or an overview report. Just like in a UA property, you will see the dimensions on the left side of a report and the metrics on the right side. In case you’re viewing an overview report, you will see summary cards, which are smaller versions of the detailed reports.

Dimensions describe the characteristics of your data. Learn more about GA4 dimensions in Google’s guide on GA4 dimensions.

Metrics are the quantitative measurements of dimensions in the form of numbers, averages, or ratios. See a full list of GA4 metrics in Google’s guide on GA4 metrics.

While viewing detailed reports only, you can add a secondary dimension by clicking the plus + sign.

This will open a dropdown list where you can choose from the available dimensions, which will add a new column to your report.

In general, metrics are numbers and data, while dimensions are attributes of those numbers or data. Every report in Google Analytics is made up of Dimensions and Metrics.


That’s it! Now you have a better understanding of reports in Google Analytics.

What’s next? Learn more about Google Analytics itself here: What is Google Analytics.