Google Analytics Update: Visits are Now Called Sessions

Following the release of Universal Analytics, updates are likely to come thick and fast to the analytics user interface as we move into user-centric analysis. The first of these changes can be seen today in your analytics account – have you noticed that “visits” has been replaced by “sessions”?

Universal Analytics no longer focuses just on visits to your website but allows you to track the user journey across multiple devices, apps and browsers as well as any interaction the user has with an electronic device that is programmed to send data to universal analytics. To accompany the move from “visits” to “sessions”, you may have also noticed the change from “unique visitors” to “users”.

Reporting on web and app data in the same view

Another change to help aid the analysis of users across the digital landscape is that you will be able to report on web and app data in the same view. Any data that you send to a property will now appear in all of the views, unless it is filtered out. Previously web and app resources could not be mixed into the same property.

Until now apps have reported into their own property; however this change means that you can now send data from the web or a mobile app to the same property and both sets of data will appear in your reports.
If you still want to report on your web and app data separately you can create different views and isolate the data from which ever source you choose using filters. Data can also be segregated at the report level using secondary dimensions or custom segments.

If you cannot see this feature yet, it has just started to roll out and you should see it appear in your account in the next week or so.

Web app reporting

Some new app-specific fields have also been added to the analytics.js JavaScript web collection library. These include screen name, app name, app version, and exception tracking. This allows you to more accurately collect and report on data from your web apps.

Unified metrics

Previously, some dimension and metrics used different names depending if you had a web view or an app view: e.g. the “Visitors” web metric and “Active Users” app metric reported on the same data. Both are now unified under the same name “Users”. As part of this roll out, metrics and dimensions names will now be the same across all web and app data in Google Analytics, making it much easier to analyse and report on the data. A full list of dimensions and metrics can be found here.

Looking for help with GA? Get in touch with Fresh Egg’s insight team today.