When Does a Default Google Analytics Session Expire?

October 18, 2022

2 Minute Read

Google Analytics helps business owners optimize and better understand how visitors use their website and also measures the impact of digital marketing strategies to aid website growth and revenue. Having a clear insight into what Google Analytics sessions are and how they operate is vital for all business owners. Having the expertise to interpret the metrics gathered across your website’s user sessions is crucial for understanding how well your website is performing.

Here is what you need to know about Google Analytics sessions.

What Is a Google Analytics Session?

A session in Google Analytics is a collection of user activity with your website that is tracked over a specific period. Every user action on the website is captured in a session. A single session, for instance, may include several page visits, social activities, occurrences, and e-commerce transactions.  Think of a session as a container for all of the actions that a user makes on your site. Tracking your website session is essential because it makes it easier to comprehend and evaluate the efficacy of your marketing strategy.

When does a Default Analytics Session Expire?

Regarding time-based expiration, by default, a Google Analytics session lasts until there has been no activity for 30 minutes for both Universal Analytics and Google Analytics 4. However, the account owner can change the length to last anywhere between a few seconds and several hours. In GA4, there is no limit to how long a session can last depending on the timeout settings you configure. If someone visits your website, analytics will start ticking to show that an activity is currently occurring. Every time they interact with an event or a new page on your website, whether it’s a scroll with a finger on a mobile device, or a mouse movement, Google Analytics refreshes the expiration period by adding an extra 30 minutes from the time of that interaction.

When a user leaves a page on your website open while taking a break and resumes the activity, Analytics will reset a new 30-minutes expiry since the resumption is perceived as a new session.

On the other hand, campaign-based expiration occurs when analytics starts a new session each time a user’s campaign source changes. It is crucial to understand that under campaign-based expiration, the first session ends even if it is still active for a new session to begin.

Be Found Online is Your Trusted Analytics Solution

Be Found Online offers a variety of options whether you’re seeking to market a new product, generate leads, or engage in a full-funnel strategy. We have the product combination and know-how to make it work and accomplish your objectives. 

Contact us today if you’re a business in need of website analytics or an internal team seeking more assistance. BFO has the experience and resources to put you ahead of your rivals and help you meet your online marketing goals.

Maggie Sauer - Director of Strategic Partnerships

Maggie Sauer

With a background in SEO, Analytics, Email Marketing, and Omni Channel Strategy, Maggie utilizes her love for data-driven strategies in her role as the Director of Strategic Partnerships.