How to use Segment Overlap Report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4)

Table of contents for how to use segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4)

  1. Overview of the segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4
  2. Creating a sample segment overlap report
  3. Selecting segments
  4. Working with a segment overlap report
  5. Applying breakdown and filters
  6. Creating a new segment from segment overlap data
  7. Sharing and downloading reports
  8. Other articles related to GA4 (Google Analytics 4)
  9. FAQ

In this article, I am going to talk about how to use the segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4).

Overview of the segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4

The segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4 allows you to compare up to three user segments and see how they overlap and relate to each other. In other words, an analysis technique that visualizes the relationship between multiple segments of users is known as a segment overlap report. 

This report helps you to understand specific audiences by isolating them based on complex or advanced segments. 

You can then create new segments based on your findings, which you can then apply to other analysis techniques and Google Analytics reports. 

A sample segment overlap report looks like below

Segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4)

A few key points to note about the segment overlap report in GA4 are

  • You can include up to three segments to compare
  • You can also break down your report using another dimension, such as country, age group, gender, etc.
  • You can create a new segment or audience using the overlap or intersection users and then use this audience across Google platforms like Google Ads, Display ads etc.

Let’s create a sample segment overlap report and understand it in more detail.

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Creating a sample segment overlap report

Follow the below steps to create a segment overlap report in GA4

Step-1: Navigate to your Google Analytics 4 property and click on the ‘Explore’ link on the left-hand side.

Explore 1

Step-2: Click on the ‘Blank’ template under ‘Explorations’. 

Blank

Step-3: A new console will open like below.

Blank exploration console

The screen is divided into three columns called ‘Variable’, ‘Tab Settings’ and ‘Free form 1’.

Variable column:

In the context of analysis, segments, dimensions and metrics are called variables. You can also change the date range and report name under the ‘Variable’ column.

Tab Settings column:

The ‘Tab Settings’ column is to configure the report technique like exploration, cohort analysis, path analysis, etc. You can also select the visualization type here like table, pie chart, bar chart, etc.

Free form column:

The ‘Free form’ tab is where the data is shown to the user. Whatever configuration that we do in the ‘Variables’ tab and in ‘Tab Settings’, will be reflected in the ‘Free form’ tab. Once we switch the reporting technique to segment overlap, this exploration tab will change to segment overlap view.

Step-4: Just click on the drop-down under ‘Technique’ at the top of the ‘Tab Settings’ column.

exploration technique

Step-5: Select ‘Segment overlap’ from the list.

segment overlap

Step-6: Now click on ‘Analysis Name’ to give a descriptive name to the report.

name report

Step-7: Now click on the drop-down arrow to change the date range.

date range

Step-8: You will get a small pop-up where you can specify the date range i.e. yesterday, this week, last 7 days, etc. and custom date range as well. Select your date range and click on ‘Apply’.

apply date

Selecting Segments

Step-9: Now let’s add segments to our report. Remember that you can add up to three segments

You can apply a segment by click on the three vertical dots on the segment name and then click on ‘Apply’.

apply segment type 1

You also get the option to edit and delete the segments. Click on ‘Edit’ if you want to edit the segment configuration. A new overlay will show like below where you can modify the segments by adding more conditions.

segment defination

If you want to create a new segment then click on the ‘+’ button and define the conditions of your segment.

create segment

Another way to apply segments to the report is by the drag and drop method. Click and hold on to the segment you want to add to the report and then drag it over ‘Segment comparison’.

segment drag and drop

As an example of a segment overlap report, I am going to apply three segments like ‘New User’, ‘Mobile Traffic’ and ‘Cart Abandoners’. This will give me an idea of how these three segments are interlinked.

overlap report sample 1 1

Congratulations! You have successfully created your first segment overlap report in GA4.

Working with segment overlap report

The segment overlap diagram is very interactive. You can hover your mouse pointer to the interior of a segment or union (the intersection of two or more segments) to see the exclusive numbers for that segment or union: this excludes any overlaps with other segments. 

You can see in the below image that the intersection highlighted is a combination of all three segments. A total of 711 users are there who are new users and visited the website using mobile devices and abandoned the cart. 

intersection of segment

You can also move your pointer to the border of a segment to see the inclusive numbers for that segment: this includes any overlaps with other segments. For example in the below image this highlighted part is showing new users only (mobile traffic and cart abandoners are excluded).

single segment only

You can also move your pointer to the intersection of any two segments.

intersection of 2segment

You can also see the correlation between these segments in the table provided below the diagram in the reporting panel. 

table

Circle 1 represents the number of common users who are new and are cart abandoners which is 1772.

Circle 2 represents the number of users common for all three segments like new users + mobile traffic + cart abandoners. There are a total of 711 users who belong to all three segments.

Circle 3 represents a single segment which is cart abandoners only (excluding mobile traffic and new users) there are a total of 69 users who are cart abandoners but they are not part of mobile traffic and new users as well.

Applying breakdown and filters

With segment overlap reports there are multiple settings you can select, let’s learn about them in more detail.

Applying breakdown

You can break down the segment overlap report by applying any dimensions.

Just click on the ‘Breakdown’ drop-down under ‘Tab settings’.

breakdown 3

A pop-up will appear, like below. Select the dimension for which you want to see the breakdown.

breakdown 1 1

You can also drag and drop any dimension here. Let’s say I break down my report by country. I will see the following view of the report.

breakdown 2 1

Just like dimensions, you can also apply a metric for the report by clicking on the ‘Drop or select metric’ button under ‘Values’.

apply metric

Filters

If you don’t want to see any data, e.g. ‘(not set)’, you can also apply filters to restrict the data shown in the analysis according to the conditions you provide. 

If your filter has multiple conditions, all of the conditions must be met to apply the filter. 

To apply a filter click on the ‘Filters’ in ‘Tab Settings’.

filters 1

A small pop-up will open. Now since we are looking at ‘Country’ as the dimension in our example, select it from the pop-up.

filter 2

Click on the drop-down to select match type and then select ‘does not contain’ from the list.

filter 3
filter 4

Now click on ‘Enter expression’ and select ‘(not set)’. 

filter 5 1

Click on ‘Apply’.

filter apply

Now you will see in the ‘Reporting’ tab that the (not set) value is removed, as below.

no not set value

Creating a new segment from segment overlap data

You can create new segments from the segment overlap data. This is very useful in case you want to see the users from different segments overlapping each other. 

Such segments can be addressed at the same time. For example, I can create a remarketing segment from the report that we created earlier with the users who are new to the website and are cart abandoners. I can later use this segment to create a new custom audience in GA4 and use it in Google Ads or display ads etc.

To create a segment from the overlap data, right-click on a segment or union in the diagram, or a cell in the data table.

create segment from overlap

OR

create segment from overlap 1

Then click on ‘Create segment from selection’.

A new overlay will appear like below with all the conditions of the segment predefined.

save segment

Click on ‘Save’ and you are done.

Sharing and downloading reports

You can share the report template with other colleges as well. Just click on the ‘Share’ icon available in the upper right corner of the ‘Reporting’ tab. 

share 2

It will open an overlay with details as below. Click on ‘Share’.

share 1 1

You also get an option to download the report. Click on the ‘Download’ button.

download 1

A small pop-up will come like below where you can specify the report format type.

download options 1

Available options are:

  • Google Sheets
  • TSV (tab separated values)
  • CSV (comma separated values)
  • PDF
  • PDF (all tabs) – this will download all the tabs in the reporting panel in PDF format, if you have multiple tabs.

That is how you can use the segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4).

Other articles related to GA4 (Google Analytics 4)

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#9 GA4 Analysis Hub

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#11 GA4 Reporting

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Frequently asked questions about how to use segment overlap report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4)

What is a segment in Google Analytics 4?

A segment is a subset of your analytics data. For example, of your entire set of users, one segment might be users from a particular country or city. Another segment might be users who come from a particular device category who visited the website.

What is the segment overlap report?

The segment overlap report gives you an idea of how a particular user is a part of multiple segments in GA4. 

It provides you with the details of the relationship between the applied segments with each other. For example, I have a segment for mobile users and another segment for where the country is the US. Now let’s suppose I have a user A who is from the US and visits my website using a mobile. In this case, the user will be a part of both segments. User B visits my website using a mobile but is from the UK, in this case, user B will only be part of the mobile users’ segment.

How many segments can I compare in the segment overlap report?

The segment overlap technique lets you compare up to three user segments and their relationship. You can then additionally break them down if using dimension or metrics.

What is the use of the segment overlap report?

Using segment overlap reports you can get insights into how different segments related to each other. You can also use the overlap segments to create a new segment or custom audience in GA4 which you can later use for remarketing purposes.

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