Mobile Apps

Mobile Application Analytics with Google Analytics

How do users find your application? How many times has it been installed? How often do they open an application and what do they do with it? How many goals have been achieved? Mobile application analytics will answer these (and more) questions.

And knowing the answers, you will be able to make the application more efficient: increase user involvement, reduce the cost of customer engagement, make the interface more friendly, etc.

In this article, you’ll find out

  • Why Google Analytics
  • Where to start.
  • What to track and what reports to analyze
  • How to set up e-commerce tracking
  • What are the differences between Google Analytics for apps and websites
  • How to separate sessions
  • Should I use Google Tag Manager to collect data in Google Analytics?

Why Google Analytics

Before you go over thereā€¦only to the functionality of Google Analytics, let’s look at its benefits.

Firstly, Google Analytics allows you to track your actions both on the website and in your mobile application. This is especially true for Ecommerce projects, where the application is an additional sales channel.

Secondly, it is one of the leaders among analytical tools (according to W3Techs statistics). As a result, more guides and ready-made solutions have been created for him, it is easier to find specialists. Thirdly, the service is free. Fourth, it is convenient – Google Analytics is integrated with Google AdSense and AdWords.

Paid Google Analytics 360 also offers integration with DoubleClick products. Data from these services (advertising costs, advertising revenue from your application, application downloads, etc.) can be automatically transferred to GA.

If you use Google Analytics 360, you can automatically export data from Google Analytics to Google BigQuery for deeper analysis.

How to set up e-commerce tracking

What are the differences between Google Analytics for apps and websites

How to separate sessions

Should I use Google Tag Manager to collect data in Google Analytics?

Where to start.

Before setting up Google Analytics, determine the key performance indicators and metrics you want to track. For example, the number of application downloads, percentage of reuse, average revenue per user, session length, etc.

There are three ways to set up tracking for mobile apps:

  • With the help of Google Analytics’ Android and iOS packages.
  • With Google Tag Manager. First we implement GTM and then we configure Google Analytics tags in it.
  • With Google Tag Manager and Firebase Analytics (a free tool for mobile app analytics). This method is useful if you already have Firebase Analytics installed. It remains to implement Google Tag Manager in Firebase and create a container in GTM. How to do this is described in the help for Android and iOS developers.

By the way, we are preparing a separate article about Firebase Analytics. Read it on our blog very soon.

Whichever way you choose to transfer data, there are recommendations that will suit everyone and help to get more accurate information.

If you have more than one application, it’s best to create your own Google Analytics resource for each one so that the data doesn’t mix up. However, different versions of the iOS and Android app are more easily tracked in one resource, creating a separate view for each OC.

Do I need to create separate resources for the application and website? If you don’t sell through the application, then yes. If you have an Ecommerce application – no, because the user is moving up the sales funnel on several devices.

Create a shared User ID (Help) view where you can track all user sessions on the site and in the application. Keep in mind that the User ID view shows sessions of authorized users only. To view the data separately for a site, create two different views for them separately for the application.

As with websites, there are restrictions on how applications collect data from Google Analytics. For example, no more than 10 million hits per month per resource and up to 500 hits per session. More information about quotas and restrictions can be found in the Help.

What to track and what reports to analyze

Read the application settings

To understand how people find your application, which channels are effective and which need to be optimized, keep track of application installations. Want to know how to set up installation tracking with Google Tag Manager? Leave your e-mail and we will send you a detailed instruction file.

You will find out from the “Traffic Sources” reports:

  • How many new users have downloaded the application.
  • From which platforms and campaigns your audience came.
  • Which operating systems and smartphones your customers prefer.
  • What is the share of regular users.

Don’t forget to link Google Analytics to AdWords to see how many users have installed the application after clicking on the AdWords ad. How to do this and much more can be found in our article on configuring GA.

Analyze your customer information

Who your users are, how old they are, what they are interested in, how often they use the application, and how long sessions last on average. This and other data will help you optimize your application and target ads.

For example, the “Browse” report in the “Audience” menu helps you to get a general idea of how many users there are, what percentage of new users are and who have returned. How many screens are viewed per session, what is the average duration of the session.