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How Avg. Session Duration Is Impacted by Session Timeout in Google Analytics?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I have been just joined an organisation in their website portal Session timeout was set as 4 Hr. by default it should be 30 min. When I see this I changed it as 30 mint to be hopeful in this way no of session should be Increased. But the number of the session didn't Increase.


At the other hand Avg. Session Duration is decreased from 00:06:00 to 00:01:00.


I revert back the changes, now Avg. Session Duration is back to 00:06:00.


So My concern is -


1. How Avg. Is session duration Impacted by Session timeout?

2. As I reduced Session timeout time why there was no Increment in session ?

1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: How Avg. Session Duration Is Impacted by Session Timeout in Google Analytics?

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

While you had your session timeout set to 4h in case of inactivity there have been sessions as long as 4h and that kept your average session duration high. When you set it to 30 min, in cases of inactivity the longest sessions were only 30 mins and the average duration has decreased.

Regarding your second question, when you set the timeout to 30 mins the number of sessions would only increase if the user would return after his session has ended but before 4hrs as per the previous setting. Your users are either returning in more than 4 hours or they are mostly new visitors so the timeout setting has not much effect on them.

Please read about how a session is defined in GA here:

Hope this helps, let me know if you have questions.

Arnold Majlath, Google Analytics Top Contributor
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