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It seems that when logged in to Google Analytics, you can create "Accounts", as well as "Profiles". Websites can be tracked under each of these.

If you are wanting to track multiple websites, some personal, some client, is there a useful arrangement of analytics accounts and profiles? Is it all of one or of another, or some particular combination?

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4 Answers

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You could setup 3 different accounts (Personal, Freelance, Work), after which you can toggle back and forth from the My Analytics Accounts dropdown menu in the upper right corner. As for profiles, it's best to create one per domain. Makes it easier to track.

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I don't think is a good idea to use accounts as context ((Personal, Freelance, Work). Analytics accounts has to be related to a company, a network or, in conclusion, a project. Under a project, as you can imagine, you can have many properties: Subdomains, Subdirectories, 3rd-party shopping carts, Top-level domains, IFramed Content (read here) –  Marco Panichi Oct 18 '13 at 4:53
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I encourage clients to set up their own accounts and add my Google account as an authorized viewer (or admin) rather than add their website profiles to my own account.

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Why don't you do the opposite? I think it could be easier to create an analytics account for every clients and then (depending on the customer needs) you can send him a planned report or add him as a viewer –  Marco Panichi Oct 18 '13 at 4:54
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I agree with danlefree in that you should have clients create their own accounts and add you as a viewer or admin (alternatively if your client is not comfortable doing that you can get the same result by creating the account and adding them).

In terms of accounts and profiles each account should be for a domain name and each profile can be for that domain just including different data. Some uses I've seen for profiles are to track secondary content like a facebook page associated with that domain, or I believe it's intended use is for more advanced filtering IE you can set it to only collect data on visits coming from a certain source (google, a subdomain, a country etc.) or if you were setting up an advanced filter to see estimated rankings for google organic as described here http://yoast.com/track-seo-rankings-google-analytics/ you would most likely want to run it on it's own profile so it wouldn't impact the rest of your data.

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I think the answer depends on how many websites you want to track and how many you anticipate tracking in the future. Something the other answers don't mention is there are limits on the accounts. Currently you can have a max of 25 google analytics accounts associated with one google account and each of those 25 analytics accounts can have up to 50 web properties associated. I think for client sites using the strategy in described in this article is pretty solid:

The steps described involve:

  1. I create an email address called analytics@yourclientsdomain.com. It doesn’t matter what you call it, as long as you can take the next step, which is…
  2. I put a forwarder in place on this email address so any notifications come to my usual email in-box
  3. I create a Google account (that’s a Mother G Account, not an Analytics account) using this email address. I don’t bother to create a Gmail address for this. It’s not necessary.
  4. Next I log in to that Google account and create the Google Analytics account. I set up the Analytics account with the client domain, install the UA code, etc.
  5. Now I go to Admin > Users (tab) > New User and add my usual email address (not the one I just created for the client) with this account as an Administrator.
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