Google Analytics Cookie Expiration

Comments:10

  1. Hello,

    I was researching as to why I have utma, utmz cookies in my logs, even though I quit using analytics. It has been a week now, and I still observe those cookies. So, with expiration periods this long, it will be some time before they disappear?

    But I am assuming these cookies belong to our domains, so they can be flushed by setting a new cookie that is expired.

  2. I was searching for this topic from the past 2 days i have to make a thesis.Awesome work and great article .
    There is a question if we add these codes in blogger along with the tracking code will they work do you prefer using all 3 of them or only one
    _utma or _utmz

  3. Can we lengthen the time range in the time to purchase/ lat time report in analytics using any of these? I have a client with really long lag time between first visit to purchase (6-8 weeks), so 30 days is a bit useless to me.

    1. Good question – you’re right, 30 days is useless for quite a lot of businesses with a longer sales cycle, and for now there’s no way to lengthen the time range. That means that the only way to handle this is to pass a visitor ID into a custom var for every visitor that hits your site (see http://cutroni.com/blog/2011/05/05/merging-google-analytics-with-your-data-warehouse/ for more details) and do your own user-level analysis.

      Alternately you can wait and hope that GA upgrades this functionality soon – they do make tons of updates to the product so anything is possible.

  4. So am I right in thinking this customization of the UTMA cookie means that it is possible to improve your unique visitors figure? I’m surprised if this isn’t exploited by many.

    1. Interesting comment. There are a few ways you could change your unique visitor count – I see overstated visit/visitor counts regularly – but so far it’s always been due to broken code, not on purpose! I think most companies are using GA to understand their business, not produce an inflated number. Your point may be that some advertising rates are based on visitor counts but advertisers wouldn’t continue advertising if they didn’t get the results they expected, right? I don’t know, can you elaborate on how you might exploit the system? 🙂

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