GA announced a cool new report called User Explorer in the beginning of May that went a bit unnoticed. I was pleased to see it in my accounts in the Audience section (it should be available from March 9, 2016 forward):
The User Explorer report lets you see individual users associated with Client ID or User ID. While GA shows only aggregate data, this feature was a big selling point for tools like KissMetrics. Understanding individual behavior is important when you want to personalize the user experience or find issues to improve.
If you haven’t implemented the User ID feature, by default GA will show Client IDs:
User IDs in the User ID enabled view:
The metrics available are sessions, average session duration, bounce rate, revenue, transactions and goal conversion rate. Unfortunately there’s no filter field to easily get users with revenue > $100 or by another metric / dimension. You should use segments for this.
When you click an ID, you’ll get a snapshot of the user: the acquisition date, channel and device category for the user, as well as an activity log that list all actions by the user during each session.
Here you can filter by any combination of pageviews, goals, ecommerce and events using the Filter by menu:
You can also expand and collapse sessions, and expand individual actions for more details.
Now let’s create a segment. It can be only user-based and we can apply only one segment at a time. I’ll select a combination of specific event and the ecommerce hit and click the Create Segment button:
If we go back to the User Explorer report and apply our new segment, we’ll see all users that match the conditions (just 2 in my case):
From there you can easily export the list of IDs matching your segment.
How to use the User Explorer report:
- Respond to specific behavior within a segment – if other reports show valuable behavior by a particular segment, you can examine specific users within that segment to get a more detailed understanding of what’s going on.
- Upsell – understand how your high-value customers purchase so you can lead the next tier of customers along that same path. Export the IDs of middle-value customers to personalize their site experience to more closely match the experience of your high-value customers, or build an audience and serve it ads for the more expensive products.
- Remarketing – you can create segments based on the relevant behavior you identify in the User Explorer report (like abandoned shopping carts), and then use those segments as the basis for new remarketing audiences showing exactly the same products or suggested upsells.
- Personalize customer service – it will be extremely valuable for your customer service representatives to check the User Explorer report for a detailed history of each user and understand the context.
- Identify personas – you have personas as part of your marketing, right? Investigate the behavior of different segments so that those personas are based on how users engage with your site.
The new User Explorer report is great and I can’t wait to use it. If you have a lot of traffic and try to apply a segment though, you’ll hit the sampling issue and without these options available in the reporting API you need to make your date range shorter, export multiple reports and combine them to get the full list of IDs.
Have you tried the User Explorer report yourself? What do you like about it? Any problems?