Google Analytics is one of the most widely used tools to help website owners analyze the traffic flow to their sites. It throws light on several parameters of interest, including information on activities that visitors perform on your website.
To comprehensively analyze the visit, activity, and search pattern of users, Google Analytics can be of great help and significance. Further, its utility can be enhanced by supplementing the information from sessions with data obtained from other allied tools. In sum, Google Analytics can uncover important information for businesses in the virtual space.
What is Google Analytics Session?
A session on Google Analytics can be described as the interactions (called hits) that a particular visitor has with the website in a given period. Consider the Google Analytics session as a container that collects and records information on activities a specific user performs on the website. For example, if a user visits your website for 5 minutes, the Google Analytics session will collect the data on all the activities performed within those five minutes.
How long a Google Analytics Session lasts?
A new session on Google Analytics starts when a visitor lands on the webpage of the organization. Following are details related to the time frame for which the Google Analytics Session remains in action:
1) The session on Google Analytics ends by default after 30 minutes of inactivity by the users on the web page
2) The session also ends at midnight, i.e., when the old day ends and a new day starts
3) Google Analytics Sessions also ends when there is a change of campaign by the user. For example, if the user has accessed your website through the Facebook campaign and then left only to enter again through the organic search, these two will be classified as different sessions. Once a user leaves the website through the Facebook campaign, one session ends, and if again they land on the page through the new search campaign, it’ll be classified as the new session.
Customization of Session Length
Google Analytics also provides you with the option to customize the length of your session beyond the 30 minutes of the default limit. For making the required changes, you need to select the Admin option and under it, choose the Tracking Info section. Under this section, you need to select the Session Settings and then adjust hours and minutes under the session timeout option.
What are webpage activities?
The activities on a webpage can take various forms – visiting different pages of the website, interacting with the social media handles, making a payment and completing a transaction, showing interest in the upcoming event, or dropping a mail to the official address given on the website. If a user has performed all the functions within those five minutes, the Google Analytics session will provide information about these actions in its session.
To find the details of the number of sessions in a particular time frame, you need to go to the “Audience” section and then click on the overview options. Under this option, select “Sessions” to get details of activities performed by users.
Why Google Analytics Sessions are Important?
The Google Analytics Sessions are pretty crucial as tracking of these sessions will provide you a deep understanding of visitors that, in turn, will enhance the effectiveness of your marketing and promotion campaigns. As a website owner, you will get to know how effective your strategy on content marketing or digital is turning out to be and what changes are required to make these strategies more apt and aligned with changing needs and preferences of consumers.
Let’s understand the importance of the Google Analytics session with the help of the following example: Assume your website is recording four sessions per user daily. The number looks good and indicates that you are pretty efficient in bringing people to your website.
On the other hand, if a prospective buyer has only three sessions per month, you must ramp up your efforts. As an online business, you need to change your strategy massively as the number of interactions is on the lower side and requires some serious upgrades. As a remedial action, many things can be done, such as increasing spending on an advertisement, promotion, or changing the medium of engagement.
Suppose you are running an online business through an E-commerce website. In that case, you can use the shopping analysis tool of Google Analytics to evaluate the impact of the critical actions on the shopping activity of the consumer. Online buyers can perform several actions on the website, and some significant ones include:
a) View of Product
b) Add to Cart Event
c) Checkout Session
d) Successful Purchase and Transaction
The reports related to these actions and activities can be viewed under the Conversions tab. You need to select the E-commerce tab and choose Shopping Behaviour to view reports.
The utility of Google Analytics couldn’t be overemphasized. It is one of the most widely used tools that provides you with profound information about the visitors, sessions, traffic, and many other vital parameters helpful in enhancing the overall traffic to your website.
It is also essential to understand that you can enhance the utility of the Google Analytics tools multiple times by combining them with the allied tools and technologies. For example, Google Analytics sessions might offer you information about the interaction of the users with the website. Still, it won’t lend you the details of the motivation behind these interactions, how users decide their purchase intentions, and how you as a marketer can influence their choices.
To extract this extra information, you must access allied tools such as session recordings, site surveys, and a funnel approach. In conjunction with these techniques, Google Analytics sessions will be able to provide you with a complete picture of the users’ interactions and intentions to purchase.
Check all about the fundamentals in digital marketing course by Google.