Google Analytics was debuted to the world in late 2005 under the slogan: “Turn insights into action.” This service has rapidly become the most universally-used analytics service because of its ability to efficiently track, report, and analyze website traffic. Google Analytics takes this information and outlines it to users in a comprehensive way with specifics enclosed in the full report. With this information, businesses and digital marketing teams are able to design specific courses of action to boost social engagement.

Google Analytics Errors You Can’t Control

While this tool is meant to help you optimize your digital presence, the data provided isn’t always fully accurate. Some of the inaccuracies you may see in your Google Analytics can come from your failure to tag pages, a poorly placed tracking code, multiple tracking codes, or JavaScript errors on the page. These issues can be fixed with a simple audit of your website, but not all errors are your fault. There are a few errors that are completely out of your control.

Disabled Javascript

This is not a widespread issue, but is an issue that you cannot prevent. Information on a webpage’s traffic is tracked using a JavaScript tag. If the browser has JavaScript disabled, the tag will not function. In the U.S. this issue only affects roughly 2 percent of the population.

No Cookie

Visitors must accept a cookie for Google Analytics to track their activity. Cookies are able to tag a visitor and log all of their activity on your website over multiple visits. A few reasons why cookies may not be allowed include:

  • Cookies are deleted manually by visitor
  • The firewall for the visitor blocks/deletes cookies
  • Cookies are not accepted by the visitor’s browser

Cookies Time Out

Google Analytics uses both a persistent cookie, which stays for 2 years, and a session cookie, which is a new cookie for every visit. If a visitor were to open a webpage and abandon their device for an extended amount of time before returning, the cookie will time out. A session will end after being inactive for 30 minutes and a new cookie will be administered to the visitor when they return to the page.

Same Device, Different User

This is mostly common with shared devices. Let’s say someone opens your law firm’s website on their device, leaves it open, and goes to the store. Someone else comes into the room and continues to browse your website. These should count as two separate visitors, but since it is the same cookie, it as logged as the same user.

The same is true for when one person has multiple devices, which has become very common. Every time that person visits your site from a different device, it is logged as another visitor.
All of the aforementioned factors can lead to an inaccurate Google Analytics report. While the latter issues are beyond your control, there were a few issues mentioned that can be diagnosed. Contact us at Market My Market to discover ways to build a Google Analytics efficient website.