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How does Google decide when to register a session

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# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

I'm trying to check my understanding of exactly what Google (analytics) means when it logs a 'session'.

 

If I issue the following command from a bash shell

 

$curl https://www.mysite.com/LoadVisibleFeedback my server creates new session object. I can see this in the server management interface, however nothing appears in the analytics real time tracking window. By default curl does not execute javascript.

 

If I fetch the same URL from a browser again the session appears in the server interface and in the real time window. I'm guessing that anything that manages to execute the javascript tracking code is seen by analytics as (participating in) a session. Is this correct?

 

Thanks

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Re: How does Google decide when to register a session

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hi :-)
The first engagement hit of a visit will usually trigger a session and will continue until the session times out (30mins of inactivty),
at midnight, or there is a change to the campaign the visitor arrived by.

If a visit is made up completely of non-interaction hits or custom variables, then a session will not be registered for the visit

It's possible for the value of the metric Sessions to be less than the value of New Users. The reason is that Sessions is not incremented in cases where a session only consists of non-interaction events. In contrast, New Users is always incremented when a new-user session occurs, even if the session only consists of non-interaction events.

For further reading - Help Center article: How a session is defined in Analytics

Bronwyn Vourtis, Google Analytics Top Contributor
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Re: How does Google decide when to register a session

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# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Most helpful, thank you