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I am doing some testing with Google Analytics to see how it does its tracking. I noticed after testing that it is only capturing 65% of my traffic.

This is what I did:

  • Go to site in Internet Explorer
  • Navigate around
  • Clear cache/cookies/history etc
  • Close browser
  • Start at the beginning

I did this 1-4 times yesterday on 5 different browsers for a total of 13 times. Only 9 sessions are showing up in Google Analytics. I am expecting 13 sessions to show up.

Edit: It seems like Google does their tracking primarily with cookies, so I think that clearing my cookies should have reset my session.

  • There may be some delay in data showing up in your reports. Have you tried checking also that your new sessions are all showing up in Real-Time reports? – nyuen Jan 20 '15 at 16:36
  • That is a good idea. I will check that. I don't think it is a time delay issue since it has been ~20hours since I did the test. – sixtyfootersdude Jan 20 '15 at 17:41
  • Very interesting question and test! I am eager for a good answer. One up-vote!! – closetnoc Jan 20 '15 at 18:19
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20 hours is not always enough for everything to show up in reports. It can take 24 hours and in some cases I even see it taking 48 hours. Their documentation states:

Processing latency is 24-48 hours. Standard accounts that send more than 200,000 sessions per day to Google Analytics will result in the reports being refreshed only once a day. This can delay updates to reports and metrics for up to two days.

There is also the issue of "sampling". Google Analytics doesn't always measure everything. Sometimes it only measures part of your visitors and estimates the rest. When this happens the reports say that they are "based on sampled data".

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  • Sure. I've added links to documentation to the answer. – Stephen Ostermiller Feb 3 '15 at 15:33
  • Thanks for the update. Looks like sampling only happens when you have larger traffic. Since I only had 13 sessions, it shouldn't effect my results. I can't reproduce the issue I was having so I am going to chalk it up to a fuke and leave it at that. Thanks for a well thought out answer. – sixtyfootersdude Feb 4 '15 at 16:14
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Google uses either meta tag or iframe to sense the visitor on your website. Recently for accuracy google analytics is asking all webmaster to use advance code snippet to be added on the webpages. Advanced tracking JS

Head over to Google Analytics->Admin->Property->Tracking info->Tracking code and add this code to enable accurate tracking.

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