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I've been asked to report a number based on the number of unique visitors that stay more than 30 seconds AND visit two or more pages.

My plan was to create a custom report or a segment based on these criteria but in both cases I run in to the same problem; pages per session is a metric in Analytics which means I can't use it as a filter. (at least in standard Google Analyics).

Am I missing something here? These seem like pretty basic variables.

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You are right that in general you can't "pre-set" filters on metrics. However, once you've segmented or created a custom report with the filters that are available, you can apply metric filters from the advanced filtration area on any individual report.

However, for these particular two metrics, you can create a segment for the filtration you want. Instead of pages per session, you'll use the dimension Page Depth in the Conditions panel of the segment builder. Page Depth is the number of pages visited in a given session, so it is for your purposes equivalent to pages per session.

A screenshot is worth paragraphs of description: First up, the Condition panel set to filter sessions to include Page Depth greater than or equal to 2.

Screenshot of segment builder Condition panel

Next, the Behavior panel set to filter Session Duration per session to be greater than or equal to 30 (seconds).

Screenshot of segment builder Behavior panel

With that setup you'll get users who had at least one session in which they both stayed at least 30 seconds and visited at least 2 pages. If you change the options to filter users (or "per user", for the Behavior panel), you'll get users who had both a session in which they visited at least two pages, and a session in which they stayed at least 30 seconds, whether those were the same session or two distinct sessions.

  • Hey Reve, thank you for this. I had completely missed that the dimension is called page depth... – joren Oct 1 at 11:33
  • Unfortunately I now run in to the problem that I cant verify the old data from 2017. I guess because the dimension didn't exist back then. There is data from 2018 which is good but It seems it's way higher than expected so I'd like to verify my old data. Do you know if page depth was measured by a different variable earlier? I don't seem to be able to find it. – joren Oct 1 at 12:30
  • Hmm, I have Page Depth data going back before 2017 (according to the Audience -> Behavior -> Engagement report, second tab). Are you using the per-session or per-user setup? If you're using per-user, perhaps you have run into problems with Data Retention settings (Admin -> Property -> Tracking Info -> Data Retention). When you get past the data retention period, per-user data kind of disintegrates. – Reve Oct 1 at 13:48
  • The other thing to check for changes to both of these is virtual page views and events. Virtual page views are real page views to GA, you're just firing them without a real page load having happened, and they are sometimes used for modals or infinite scroll. If you had extra events firing, that could increase the recorded time on site even if the actual time on site was the same (since GA can only record time between hits, not time after a final hit - which is why bounced sessions are always duration 0). – Reve Oct 1 at 13:52
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You can set up a goal of visiting 2 pages or more and track the goal conversion.

  • A one line answer is not high quality. Can you include more? Perhaps instructions for how to do this, or a link that shows how? – Stephen Ostermiller Sep 30 at 15:58

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