Getting started with Data Studio is easy, but mastering it takes time. You may feel completely stuck sometimes. Where can you find help?
You can create your first Data Studio report in minutes. But challenges can appear when you start to add formulas, create filters, or blend data sources.
You may start to doubt. Are you blocked due to:
- Something you didn't understand?
- A button you didn't see?
- A page you missed in the documentation?
- A missing feature?
- A bug?
What can you do when you need help? Here are 6 suggestions:
- Search the Google Issue Tracker
- Ask for help in an online community
- Ask your question on Twitter
- Search in Community Visualizations
- Hire an expert
- Manipulate your data outside of Data Studio
1. Search the Google Issue Tracker
Start here if you want to ask for a new feature in Data Studio, or report a bug. It's easy to miss this resource as it won't come up in Google searches. You need to be logged in on a Google account to access it.
https://issuetracker.google.com/issues?d=vote_count&d=title&d=status&d=issue_id&d=modified_time&s=vote_count:desc&p=1&q=componentid:196095 status:(assigned | new)
Vote on what matters to you by starring issues. You can see which issues are being addressed as they are marked as "assigned":
2. Ask for help in an online community
Please start by searching if a similar topic already exists. It's very likely that someone had your issue before. You may find your answer immediately.
How to ask for help
- Provide as much information as possible. Screenshots, data sample, a copy of your report. If your data is confidential, create a small anonymized data set.
- Give context. It's easier to figure what's you're trying to do if you write about "a Facebook campaign name/cost" than if you write about "Metric A/B".
- Try to isolate your issue. Can you reproduce it with a simple Google Sheet?
Here are 3 communities where you can ask for help. They are ordered by most active:
a. Data Studio community support forum
This is Google's official support forum for Data Studio, but most answers are posted by users who volunteer to help others.
Some users are very knowledgeable and post high-quality answers:
If you receive a good answer:
- Please mark it as accepted.
- Say "Thank you"! It's disappointing for someone who offers their time to help when they don't even hear back.
b. Stack Overflow
3. Ask your question on Twitter
They are many people following the hashtag #GoogleDataStudio. If you like using Twitter, this could be an option.
4. Search in Community Visualizations
Google recently introduced Community Visualizations, which lets developers build their own components for Data Studio. It's an ideal solution when you feel like the default charts are too basic.
The number of shared visualizations available is still small, but they are good examples of what it's possible to create.
5. Hire an expert
Did you think of hiring a freelancer for a few days? They could help you build a report, write a connector, or create a custom visualization.
a. Find a freelancer on Upwork
Upwork has many freelancers with Google Data Studio skills, located all over the world. Their rates vary widely depending on their location and experience level.
https://www.upwork.com/search/profiles/?nbs=1&q=google data studio
b. Find a freelancer on Malt
Malt lists 70+ freelancers with Data Studio skills. Attention though, Malt is mostly popular in France. The majority of profiles are written in french, even when the freelancers speak good English.
https://www.malt.com/s?q=google data studio
6. Manipulate your data outside of Data Studio
Being stuck with Data Studio is often an indicator that you're trying to do something which should be done on your data source instead. For example by:
- Creating new columns or tabs in your Google Sheet
- Creating new columns or tables in your database
- Using SQL
- Using a data warehouse service for your analytics queries
A good warning sign is when you feel like you need to blend too many data sources. Or when you start wondering how to create loops and variables in Data Studio.
BigQuery is an interesting option to consider. It's Google's data warehouse service, dedicated to managing and querying large datasets.
If you have more more advice on how to get help with Data Studio, we'd love to hear it!