Users and sessions in Google Analytics explained

Right! Let’s get into it, so you’re new to google analytics and you are trying to find out what the difference between users and sessions is.

Users in google analytics

Every time someone comes to your website for the first time that person is recorded as a new user. Users can have multiple sessions on your website for example if you visit a website 4 times in 1 day you will be recorded as 1 user with 4 different sessions. There are some special situations when this will not be the case but I’ll cover that near the end of this article. Every different person that visits your website is a user.


Every user can have multiple sessions on your website these will be counted in the sessions tab. So if I visit your website at 3 different times during the day that will count as 1 user with 3 sessions. But what if someone opens your website and then opens another tab on their browser and then completely ignores your tab? Great Question! Once a user is inactive on your website for longer than 30 minutes Google analytics will then end that current session. A session, simply put is one visit to your website.

Special Cases

With regards to users in Google Analytics, there are some special cases where you are the same user but you will be recorded as a new user. If you decide to clear your browsing history or visit from a different browser you will be recorded as a new user. Should you decide to visit the same website from a different device then you will be recorded as a new user as well.

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