How to get started with Google Apps Script

How can you get started with Google Apps Script?

Google Apps Script allows you to create add-ons for Sheets, Docs, or Forms, automate your workflow, integrate with external APIs and a lot more.

In this episode we invited Data Analyst and Apps Script Expert Ben Collins and asked him how he got started in using App Script when developing solutions that helped his clients to automate their workflows.



Full length video: http://techmarketer.io/bencollins
Ben’s Website: http://benlcollins.com
Ben’s Dashboard Course: http://bit.ly/2qBFCXu
Ben on Twitter: http://twitter.com/benlcollins

Apps Script Developer Docs: https://developers.google.com/apps-script/overview
How to pull in mailchimp data into Apps Script video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OnsxGxgNVKY
Beginners Guide to starting Apps Script: http://bit.ly/2sgKaUk
Google Developer’s Channel: http://bit.ly/2r6PCLM
Totally Unscripted Show: http://bit.ly/2riURs6
Google Cloud Conference Videos: http://bit.ly/2sgY60n
Google Apps Script Forum: http://bit.ly/2rQHOPq

GTM Resource Guide: https://old.measureschool.com/guide
Free GTM Beginner course: https://old.measureschool.com/emailcourse
Courses: https://old.measureschool.com/products

?Looking to kick-start your data journey? Hire us: https://old.measureschool.com/services/
?Recommended Books: https://kit.com/Measureschool/recommended-measure-books
? Gear we use to record these videos: https://kit.com/Measureschool/measureschool-youtube-gear

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/measureschool
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/measureschool

– In this video David is gonna tell you what formulas to use to analyze your data in Google Sheets. All and more coming up right after this. Hi there and welcome to another video of MeasureSchool.com where we teach you the data-driven way of digital marketing. My name is Julian and on this channel we do marketing tech reviews, tutorials, and give you tips on better analysis just like this one. So if you haven’t yet, consider subscribing. Now, you might know I am a big fan of Google Sheets because I can take data from different datasets, such as Google Analytics, Facebook, AdWords, and put them all together in one Google sheet, then analyze my data there and build a dashboard of it as well. Now, once you pull in all that data from these different sources, you will probably have a spreadsheet of raw data and then you need to work with that data in order to get it in the right format, get insights out of it, and maybe also build a dashboard of that. And the tools that you are using to do all this are formulas. Now, I’ve asked my friend David from Coding For Losers, he also has a YouTube channel right over there, to come up and answer the question what are the most used formulas for marketers nowadays to do analysis within Google Sheets, and here’s what he came up with. David, take it away.

– I’m not that good at guitar, just started learning, but to me learning guitar and learning Google Sheets, you know, when I first started learning it five or six years ago, they’re really similar, similar to learning anything. You have to put in time practicing, or else you won’t get any better. And there’s learning curve. You really have to kind of learn things in a specific order, otherwise you really end up confusing yourself, more than you really have to, and having less fun. And that’s the third thing. If you don’t have fun doing it, if you don’t have fun practicing and you don’t have fun moving up that learning curve, you won’t enjoy doing it and it’s, honestly, not even worth doing. So, stick to Excel if you feel like you get it and you don’t want to get into another learning curve and have fun with it. But Google Sheets, over the last couple of years, has really blossomed in terms of what it can do. You can now use all kinds of add-ons, like Blockspring or Supermetrics, or the Google Analytics add-on. It seems like every service now, there’re so many different add-ons that you can use to pull data into sheets and really make use of it there, without having to do CSV exports and all that kind of clunky stuff. And on the other side, in terms of like display of data, Google Data Studio is now this really great free, sexy dashboarding tool and reporting tool. So, you can use Google Sheets as this kind of hub to sit in the middle of the work that we do as digital marketers, pull data in using add-ons, use sheets as your hub to calculate all your metrics and all your changes overtime and all of your stats, all the stuff you want to look at, and then push them up to Data Studio so you have a nice, clean dashboard there to share with your team or other kinds of reports. So, Google Sheets has really become the Swiss Army knife, I would say, for us, digital marketers, anyone working in startups or tech, recently, over the last couple years. But, there is that learning curve. There is a fair amount that you need to learn to be comfortable and be fluent working in Google Sheets. So, let’s talk about Google Sheets formulas specifically and kind of how you can limit your vision in Google Sheets formulas, just learn the ones that you really need to know upfront and potentially never even expand your vision outside of this set of, I would say, about 10 formulas that you really need to know to kick ass in Google Sheets. The first one to narrow your focus, when thinking about sheets formulas, are to think about the jobs they do, because they really only perform, as I’ve seen, three jobs, and those three jobs are: they’re wrangle data in terms of plucking out just the pieces of data that you need removing everything else. They snipe data for you, so something like VLOOKUP would be sniping out just the value that you need. And they count, they help you come up with all of the averages and sums and counts for all the metrics that you need to calculate, the kind of aggregation functions. So those are the three jobs really, and once you think about formulas in that way you can pick a few formulas per job and forget about all the rest of them. So, if you have QUERY you don’t need COUNTIF and examples like that. So the first job of formulas, wrangling data. Those are doing things like processing text and dates, turning a date string into just a year or a month, filtering data that you don’t need, and merging data together so taking data that’s in two tabs and putting it into one tab. And there’re a few formulas that we use to do that. For processing text we’ll use things like, formulas like LEFT and RIGHT, the TEXT function itself for working with dates frequently, date formulas like TODAY. So if you want to calculate the last week you can always do like TODAY minus seven, stuff like that. For filtering data I really frequently use IF and IFERROR, which are kind of logic functions but let you, say you have a referring URL path and you want to boil it down to a channel, you can use IF statements to classify certain texts in URL as a channel in the UTM tags. Just one kind of offhand example. Merging data, I’ll often use formulas like ARRAYFORMULA to pull together large datasets into one tab, and also these curly braces that you see here are really really helpful in Google Sheets, and we’ll get into why later. So the second job of formulas is sniping. That’s you have a specific value you’re looking for from a table of other values and you want to look it up. So, the most common usage of sniping is the VLOOKUP formula and I also, in times where VLOOKUP doesn’t work, say you’re looking, you want to look left in a table versus to the right, you can use INDEX for that instead. So VLOOKUP and INDEX are really kind of the same type of formula. And the last job of formulas is counting. Now, this is where you can get kind of crazy with all the different formulas you want to use, you can use. You can combine things like FILTER with COUNT or SUMIF, but I honestly choose to just use queries for counting. For all averages, counts, sums, max, min, all of this aggregation work I hire query to do that job. So now you’re up to speed on the three jobs that formulas do, wrangling, sniping, and counting, and about 10 formulas that you can use to do those jobs in Google Sheets. So hopefully, this will really help narrow your focus when you’re learning sheets formulas and make it a lot more fun to get started. There is a cheat sheet that Julian will link to in this video in the description and you can use that cheat sheet to really dive into the needy-greedy of learning all these formulas, work through a bunch of examples, and get some of that fun practice that I talked about with guitar. Take care.

– Alright, so there you have it. These are the 10 formulas that you should know as a marketer to analyze your data in Google Sheets. Pretty interesting, right? Now, we’ve got the links that David mentioned in the description below, but he also did a video on how to use these formulas on his YouTube channel right over there, and you can also probably click right here right now to view this video. Now if you haven’t yet, consider subscribing to our channel over there, because we’ll bring you new videos every Wednesday. My name’s Julian. Till next time!

About the author: Julian Juenemann

Julian started and grew venture-backed startups with his unique 'data first' approach to Online Marketing. He then founded MeasureSchool.com to help marketers, like him, the data-driven way of digital marketing.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments