Understanding Active Users Report in Google Analytics

Google Analytics uses a metric called active users which refers to real-time users when used in the context of real-time reports.

Real-time users are the people who are on your website right now:

real-time-users

When the active users metric is used in the context of the Active Users report in Google Analytics, it refers to the number of users who visited your website within the last 1 to 30 days in the selected time period.

The Active Users report can be found under the ‘Audience’ menu:

Through the Active Users report, you can determine the number of users who visited your website in the last 1, 7, 14 or 30 days in the selected time period.

Users who visited your website in the last 1 day, in the selected time period are known as 1 day active users.

Users who visited your website in the last 7 days, in the selected time period are known as 7 day active users.

Users who visited your website in the last 14 days, in the selected time period are known as 14 day active users.

Similarly, Users who visited your website in the last 30 days, in the selected time period are known as 30 day active users.

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Note(1): The name active users is a bit misleading in the context of the Active Users report, as here active users do not mean real-time users.

Note(2): Both users and active users are the same things in the context of the Active Users report.

You can also apply an advanced segment to this report:advanced segment

How to use the Active Users report

The Active Users report is useful in understanding the performance of a promotional campaign while it is still running. To use this report, compare 1 day active users with 7, 14 or 30 days active users:

compare active users

Follow the steps below:

Step 1: Plot 7, 14 or 30 days active users on the Active Users report. To plot a metric, simply select it.

Note: The 1 day active users metric is plotted by default.

Step 2: Compare the 1 day active user trend with 7, 14 or 30 days active users trend. If you see that 7, 14 or 30 days users are a lot less than 1 day active users then that means either:

  1. You are not getting qualified traffic on the website, or
  2. Your website, mobile app, or other offering is not doing a good job of engaging the qualified traffic. So the traffic is not sticking around.

This is the kind of insight you can get from the Active Users report.

Other articles you will find useful:

Guide to Cross-device tracking with User Id in Google Analytics

Using Enhanced E-Commerce segments for Remarketing in Google Analytics

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Himanshu Sharma

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Himanshu helps business owners and marketing professionals in generating more sales and ROI by fixing their website tracking issues, helping them understand their true customers' purchase journey and helping them determine the most effective marketing channels for investment.

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