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Understand information in your reports and troubleshoot reporting issues such as self-referrals, (not set) data, and inaccurate information
 
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Behaviour Flow impossible paths

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi, 

 

I am seeing paths through my website in the Behaviour Flow view that are impossible. People are navigating from a page to another, but the two pages in question are not directly connected in any way.
Would anyone happen to know why this issue could happen and if these mismatches are common?


Many thanks in advance, 
Chiara

Re: Behaviour Flow impossible paths

Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
# 2
Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
Most likely, the page(s) that are commonly linked to are not being tracked. It's also possible you're filtering out the intermediate pages, but I'm not sure how that filter would affect the flow reports.

Re: Behaviour Flow impossible paths

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi dsatino,

Thank you for your reply.
Why wouldn't the intermediate pages not being tracked if google analytics tracks all pages' pageviews? Also, the intermediate pages do appear at other points of the behaviour report.

Thanks for any thoughts,
Chiara

Re: Behaviour Flow impossible paths

Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
# 4
Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
It tracks pageviews as long as a page view hit is sent to GA. So if there is not GA code loaded with the page, then there is no pageview as far as GA is concerned. It's possible the code is there and just implemented poorly, or possibly too far down page source and never get read before the user moves on.

If you send some links to page1 -> missing page(s) -> page2, I'll take a look and see if anything looks strange in the coding.

Re: Behaviour Flow impossible paths

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi Chiara,

Many are commenting that you might not be recording all of your page views, which is possible, but if you're running a high traffic site it's likely that the pageviews you've recorded aren't present in that particular report due to sampling.

https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/2519986?hl=en
"Flow reports cannot display data for more than 100,000 sessions. If you have more than 100,000 sessions in the data set, the sampled data appears in the flow reports. Adjust the date range to reduce the number of sessions in the report."

One other possibility is that people are navigating your site without using your site navigation. Image somebody sent an email with two (un-tagged) links to those pages, and both pages are visited in order. They'll appear to have flown between those pages organically in your report.

It's very common to have user journeys that don't make a lot of sense and there's numerous reasons the data could present seemingly impossible journeys. In my experience, it's only worth exploring these if a particular "impossible journey" is happening in high numbers.




Re: Behaviour Flow impossible paths

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi Matt and dsatino,

Thank you very much for your explanation.

@Matt: The linking of pages would make sense if the page was appearing as a landing page rather than between two pages. The latter is unfortunately happening, but in low numbers. I will look into the sampling issue however I am unsure this would affect us.

@VariantArray: thank you for your offer, I am fairly confident the code was implemented correctly, but I appreciate the interest.

Thanks,
Chiara