Google Data Studio has long given report makers the ability to create their own “calculated fields”.  Recently, blended data sources were also made available.  What was missing was the ability to combine values from blended sources using calculated fields.  This capability has just been released and is available now in data studio!  

Example: Total Google Reach –  Google My Business and Search Console 

This could be very useful for small businesses with local locations. You can watch the YouTube video to see the whole process, or follow the detailed walk through below. 

Step By Step 

Here are step by step instructions for using the new feature.  You can find also check out the example report here. 

 1.  Add data source for Google My Business (GMB) listing to the report. Note: I recommend the free Jepto connector or the premium Supermetrics connector for this data.  Create a time series graph for total views metric.

2.  Add Google Search Console (GSC)  ‘Site’ data to the report.
Create a time series graph for total impressions metric.

3. Combine the charts to create a new chart and a new “Blended Data Source”.
Select a chart, then use CNTRL button and click on the other chart to select both.  Right-Click on the selected charts to drop down the select menu and select “Blend Data”.  Your new blended data source and chart will be created.

4. Create a new field called “Total Google Reach” .
The new metric will be added to the blended chart. Create the new field by adding Impressions + Total Views.

  • Click “Add Metric” in the metrics section. 
  • Add the new name and the formula “Impressions + Total Views” and click the “Apply” button.
  • A detail screen will appear and the new metric will be added to the graph. Simply click on the page to make the detail screen go away! 

5. Remove extra source metrics (optional)
You can safely remove the extra metrics if desired so only the new Total Google Reach field shows in the chart. Congratulations, you just created your first blended calculated metric!

The completed combined metric chart. 

What are the implications of calculated fields with blending?  

Data Studio creators have been anticipating this feature since blending was released. Google seems to have waited a bit to release this feature – it was exposed before release in an official Google YouTube video with Krista Seiden and Mary Pishny. “Data Blending in Data Studio”   appeared October 1, 2018.

This ability to create new fields from blended data  greatly extends the power and reach of Data Studio in 3 major ways:

  1. Simplifying current reporting processes.  Now you can work with values between metrics from different data sources directly in the data studio editing interface. Before this,  new fields had to be created from multiple sources outside of data studio then brought in as a data source.  This required a lot of thinking ahead and setup. 
  2. Faster data reconciles between sources with different values.   If you want to provide consistent dimension values across data sources this is now possible. Applying a case statement on a new field should allow us to create consistent values for dimensions across data sources.    
  3.  Faster discovery and analysis.  The ability to create new metrics will encourage more exploration of the data and the connections between different sets of data. 

I will add new examples and links to new ideas for how to use this new ‘superpower’.  If you have an interesting idea, or a new implementation to share please let me know in the comments!