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Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 1
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I am sending the GA Client ID as a custom dimension with session scope.

However, the number of client ID reported in GA is much less the the number of total Users that GA counts. It's about 20% less. 

 

For example: GA indicates 137 users on a day, and the client ID count is only 114.

Total user count: The total users in the Audience overview view.

Client Id counting: I count the number of rows in a table showing the client ID and pages in a customized report.

 

Client ID sending: During startup of the website, I am informed through a callback in javascript, that the GA tracker is alive, and then I am setting the client as customized dimension (only once, as it has session scope). The client ID is retrieved from the Tracker and is the same as the one in the cookie.

 

Any ideas why the counted client ID value's is so much less ? 

I would expect it to be almost the same 

- Ed

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 2
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First, check if it's sampling.

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 3
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> First, check if it's sampling.
What do you mean?

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 4
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At the top of the report, see if you have something like this:

Sampling.JPG

 If not, you can still click that little checkerboard and adjust the sampling rate.

 

It could also be that both numbers are correct. I'm guessing that 'Client ID' is a unique identifier of some sort and if that's the case then it makes sense that it would be less than 'Users'. A 'User' is basically a browser on a machine. If you go to your site using IE, and then firefox, and then chrome, you're 3 different users. If you login to your site on each of those browsers and the Client ID captures your login id, then you're still just one Client ID. In this case, your report would have:

Users: 3

ClientID: 1

 

Now assume you log-on to your site on your iPad, then your phone, and later on your home PC. Now you have:

Users:6

Client ID: 1

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 5
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Thanks.
> If not, you can still click that little checkerboard and adjust the sampling rate.
No, I don't see that checkerboard. I only select one day and compare the Client ID and User count.

> Client ID. In this case, your report would have:
> Users: 3
> ClientID: 1
I don't understand this.
I thought that every browser will have his own Client ID, and that the unique Client ID is (almost) the same as a User (that how I understand it from the doc's). So I would expect a 3 Users and 3 Client ID's.
Or am I am overlooking something ?
- Ed

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 6
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Client ID is basically the same as User, but you can't run reports on the client ID since GA doesn't make it available. So I assumed you mean User ID, which was the basis for my explanation. Now I'm guessing that you have custom dimension called Client ID which is probably unrelated to the Client ID in the GA docs. If that's the case then my explanation still stands. Can you post a screen shot of the report? That would probably help

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 7
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> Now I'm guessing that you have custom dimension called Client ID
> which is probably unrelated to the Client ID in the GA docs.

I think we have a misunderstanding here. What isn't clear from my original post ?
I explain that the Client ID is the GA tracker client ID. So they must be related I quess.
And no it has nothing to do with the UserId (view/dimension).

If it's not clear, please let me know?
Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by topic author Ed B
February 2016

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 8
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I apologize. I scrolled to the top and after reading the first two lines I realized you were quite clear. I don't know if I skimmed over it or just didn't believe you were actually capturing the client id, but either way the problem is not with your explanation, rather it's my ability to read it. In any case, I apologize for the seemingly random responses.

That said, I also capture the client ID so can tell you one basic reason right of the top of my head:
Not every user has a client ID. When a user is in private browsing mode or doesn't allow cookies, then there is no ID for you to capture. Google still has some way of differentiating them though. Depending on your tracking code, you may be able to see this in a report. Here's what mine looks like:

ClientID.JPG

 

As you can see, I have 19 users but only 7 ID's.

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

[ Edited ]
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# 9
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Thanks
A few thinks:
1) How do you get this first row in your customized to show up without any client id ? (the one with 13 Users). My row al have a client ID with exactly 1 Users metric.

2) Why does my client ID's aren't prefixed with the GA version? I remember reading somewhere that it should, but mine doesn't contain it and I simple retrieve it from the Tracker as documented (I use Universal GA: https://www.google-analytics.com/analytics.js)

ClientId.png

Re: Client ID count is less then User count in GA ?

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# 10
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Could you please help me out with my last questions so we can finish this post? Thanks.