Share Account Access the Right Way

account sharing security

Careful who you share with!

When your marketing agency asks for access to your Google Analytics and various other accounts, there’s a right way and a wrong way to share account access.  Sharing account access the wrong way can lead to disaster.  You open your company and yourself up to security vulnerabilities, and you run the risk of losing control of your key marketing systems.  Sharing account access the right way is simple to do – just follow the easy steps outlined below – and then rest assured you remain in control of your accounts and you have control over what your marketing agency can and can’t do.

Do Not Share Your Account Username and Password

Don't be a dummy, Share Account Access the Right Way

Don’t be a dummy!

Don’t be a dummy!  Never.  Absolutely not.  You’re not that lazy.  Just don’t do it.  This senseless act happens far too often.  When asked to share email account access, sometimes it mistakenly feels easier to give your Gmail username & password, probably because you don’t realize how easy it is to do things the right way.  Whatever the reason, do not do it.  Once someone has access to your email account, they pretty much have access to your entire life.  Do things the right way.  It doesn’t take that much effort, and you’ll keep your personal life and company’s systems safer.

Share Account Access to Your Google Analytics Account

Step 1:  In the Admin area, click on the “User Management” link in the left column.  NOTE: There are 3 “User Management” links on this page, and you must click the one in the Account section, on the far left.

Google Analytics User Management

Click “User Management” in the left column

Step 2:  Enter the email address of the person you are inviting to your Google Analytics account.  Set their permissions so they can Edit, Collaborate, and Read & Analyze.  Also, check the box next to “Notify this user by email” and then click the “Add” button.

Google Analytics Add New User Permissions


That’s it!  You are done.

Share Account Access to Your Google Webmaster Tools (aka Google Search Console) Account

Step 1:  From the account dashboard, click the little gear icon in the upper right and choose “Users and Property Owners.”

Google Webmaster Tools User ManagementStep 2:  On the next page, click the red “ADD A NEW USER” button.

Google Webmaster Tools Add New User


Step 3:  Enter the email address of the person you are inviting to your Google Webmaster Tools account.  Set their permissions so they have “Full” access and then click the “Add” button.

Google Webmaster Tools User Permissions


That’s it!  You are done.

Share Account Access to Your Google AdWords Account

AdWords works differently than other Google services.  For most Google services, you invite external users into your account, and grant them access by setting their permissions.  With AdWords, on the other hand, the marketing agency requests permission to manage your account.  In order for the marketing agency to initiate this request, they need to know your Customer ID.

Step 1:  Login to your Google AdWords account.  In the upper right, you’ll see your Customer ID.  It’s the number in the format of XXX-XXX-XXXX.

Google Adwords Customer ID


Step 2:  Email your Customer ID to your marketing agency.

Step 3:  The marketing agency requests access to your Google AdWords account.  You will receive an email.  If you receive the email, skip straight to step 4.

In case you miss that email, you will also see a pending request in your Account Settings.  To get there, click the gear icon in the upper-right and choose “Account settings” from the menu.

Google AdWords Account Settings


And on the next screen, choose “Account access” from the left sidebar menu

Google AdWords Account Access


If there are any pending requests, you’ll see them on this screen and can approve them.  NOTE:  Don’t use the “+ USERS” button!  This is how you add employees to your Google AdWords account.  To share access with a marketing agency, the marketing agency must initiate the request as outlined here in these instructions.

Step 4:  Approve the request.  Either click the approve link in the email you receive, or click the approve button from the “Account access” screen in your AdWords account.

That’s it!  You are done.

Share Account Access to Your WordPress Site

Step 1:  From your WordPress admin area, under “Users” click the “Add New” link

Wordpress Add New User


Step 2:  Fill out the “Add New User” form.

  • Fill in the “Username” and “E-mail” fields.
  • Set the “Password” and “Repeat Password” to something difficult.  Make sure WordPress reports the password as Strong.
  • Click the “Send this password to the new user by email” checkbox.  If the recipient is competent, they’ll immediately change their password after the first successful login, so you don’t have to worry about the insecurity of passwords over email.
  • Set the “Role” to “Administrator.”
  • Finally, click the “Add New User” button

Wordpress Add New User Form


That’s it!  You are done.

Sharing Account Access to Any of Your Other Online Accounts

Take the time to learn the correct way to share account access.  Most reputable online marketing systems have a way for you to invite users into your account.  Under no circumstance should you ever hand over your own username and password.  If you try to, any decent marketing agency will throw up red flags and refuse to take it because of the security vulnerabilities it represents.  Everyone on both sides will appreciate having it done the right way, so take the extra couple minutes to keep yourself and your business protected when sharing access to your online marketing systems.