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Sessions

Session is defined as the period of the time a user is active on your site or app.

Alternate names:
Sessions

What are Sessions?

Google defines a session ‘as the period of the time a user is active on your site or app’.

During a session, Google Analytics collects every interaction a user makes on your website within a certain time frame including the number of page views, screen views, transactions, etc

How long does a session last in Google Analytics?

Each session will end after a certain period of time and below is the list. 

  1. Time-based expiration (ends after 30 minutes of inactivity)
  2. End-of-day expiration (terminate at the end of the day based on your time zone)
  3. Campaign-based expiration (ends every time a user's campaign source changes) 

Time-based Expiration

If a user does not interact with the website for 30 minutes, his or her session will end automatically.

When a visitor leaves your website open without doing anything, their session expires in 30 minutes. On the contrary, if the user returns after 20 minutes, clicks on a  link or scrolls the page, the session gets extended by another 30 minutes. 

End of day Expiration

A session will automatically terminate at the end of the day and according to your time zone settings.

For example, If a user visits your page at 11:40 PM, then the session will end automatically at 11:59:59 PM and new sessions will start at 12:00 PM.

Campaign Based Expiration

A session will expire if a user returns to a website from different campaign sources like Google, Facebook, and Email.

For example, Google Analytics stores information when a user visits your website through a specific link from the campaign. If that same user visits the page through a different campaign, the first session will expire.

Related: Everything you need to know about Session timeout in Google Analytics.

What is the Average Session duration in GA?

Average session duration is a metric that measures the average length of sessions on your website. GA begins counting a session from the moment the user lands on your site and continues counting until the session ends.

Google Analytics calculates average session duration by dividing the total duration of all sessions ( in seconds) during a specified time frame by the total number of sessions during that same time frame.

What is a good average session Benchmark?

According to the research, a reasonable benchmark for average session duration is between 2-3 minutes.

Any session that lasts longer than three minutes is considered a good average.

Click here to read more about the average session duration by industry benchmarks.

Engaged session in GA4

GA4 has removed bounce rate as a metric from the interface and replaced it with Engaged Sessions. Engaged Sessions offer a deeper insight into how visitors interact with your content, giving a more nuanced understanding of their behaviors.

The number of sessions that lasted longer than 10 seconds or had a conversion event, or had 2 or more page or screen views.
Engaged sessions can be extended from 10 seconds to 60 seconds.

Why is it important to track Sessions?

One of the most important metrics to analyze your website performance is ‘Sessions’ in GA.

The more you know about the visitor’s interaction with your site, their behavior, and the website performance, the better it is to help with their marketing efforts.

Evaluating your website sessions makes you know how Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Pay-per-click (PPC)  marketing efforts are performing for your business.

How to measure the Session in Google Analytics?

To measure the session, first open Google Analytics, then in the left-hand column select the audience tab, then overview

In the Overview report, GA displays the total number of sessions per specific period.

How to measure the session in Google Analytics 4?

To measure session In GA4 first go to reports, then click on the acquisition, then select the traffic acquisition there you will see the sessions reports.

Frequently Asked Questions
How long is a session on GA4 ?
How to find sessions in Google Analytics?
What is an engaged session?
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