How is a visit treated in Google Analytics when you move across synced devices? As a new visit or is the cookie shared, keeping the session alive?

For example, Chrome's tab syncing feature or iCloud Tabs ...


1 Answer 1


By default, I believe Google Analytics' cookie configuration would track each visit on each device, from the same user, as separate visits but with a few modifications to your tracking code, you can effectively measure cross-device...

  1. Upgrade to Universal tracking in GA if you haven't already done so.
  2. Add an if statement to check if current visitor is authenticated (like below).

    {Edit: It appears I cannot add code in the same way you can on SO so please refer to the link below.}

You can learn more on implementing this with the guide used as per above over at True Social Metrics.

  • But this solution seem to be for users that have signed-in to the site? Mar 25, 2014 at 9:14
  • Well yes, but you'd need a metric that you can distinguish as being the same user across multiple devices. You could authenticate them another way instead of using the email address signed in.
    – zigojacko
    Mar 25, 2014 at 10:38
  • I understand that, but in this case, some kind of metric must already be in place since for example iCloud Tab's enables the website you're visiting avaliable across multiple synced devices. But I guess this doesn't go for the Google Analytics session cookie? If I browse site A on my Mac and then choose to continue to browse site A on my iPhone then I guess GA will treat this as a new visit? Mar 25, 2014 at 12:11
  • I'd suggest upgrading analytics to Universal Analytics - This should actually track across multiple devices as it introduces a new tracking code, the ability to track a user’s behaviour among different devices and a new measurement protocol that is able to import data from online and offline devices.
    – zigojacko
    Mar 25, 2014 at 12:57
  • OK, thx for taking the time answering. I'll dig into Universal Analytics. Mar 27, 2014 at 10:09

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