Average Number of Sessions Per User Per Cohort

  • 28 October 2020
  • 1 reply

Honestly can’t believe such basic metrics are not clearly visible, would be great if someone can assist.

I would like to know how many sessions a user does on average, PER MONTH or PER WEEK, SINCE August 1st. Then I would like to determine, on average, how long does each session last (I think I have already done this part). Finally, I would like to know, the average amount of time spent on the app per user, per month, SINCE August 1st. Ie, Cohort X, spends 60 mins per month on average since august 1st. 

Currently the only way to determine sessions a user does on average is the following. App Session, Total per User, Aggregate by Average. If you set the time period to say 3 months however, it tells you the total number of sessions done by that cohort in 3 months. This isn’t correct. And you cannot simply divide it by 3 either. If you do that, you’re saying everyone in that cohort has been there for 3 months, which is not correct. The goal here is to identify, AVERAGE TIME PER MONTH PER USER. 

Secondly, when comparing Total App Sessions vs Total Session Start, my data is showing that Session Starts are less than Total Sessions. How is that fundamentally possible? For every app session, there has to be a session start. If anything, App session can only be <= Session Start, because there can be a lot of sessions that are less than the default 10 second Session definition. My session setup is all default btw, 30 mins as timeout, and 10 seconds as min session length. 


1 reply

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@legelas18 —

For your first question, to break the session down per month or per week, you can do this via the special “Date” property (Day, Hour, Week, Month). It’s documented here in our Insights help article.


For your second question App Session vs Session start — they are looking at two different metrics, and it is possible for there to be differences:

App Session   ($ae_session) — Executes when the user spends more than 10 seconds in the app. This event also includes a property, “Session Length,” which reflects the number of seconds the user spent in the session. To override the minimum or maximum session value, follow the steps in Adjust Session Length Parameters for App Session Event.


In Insights,  “Session Start” is a virtual event which is not the same as tracked events in your project, and do not count as part of your event count— so I would not be surprised by a slight difference. 


Take this example:

 For App Session, a user opens the application for more than 10 seconds and this event is tracked. Then the user closes the app and opens it again and stays on the app for 10 more seconds, this counts as a second event.

For Session Start, it would look a little differently. The user opens the app and triggers an event and it will trigger the Session Start event; however, this event has a 30 minute timeout window (this is set in your project settings). So if the user were to close the application in quick succession and re-open the application and trigger some events, the session would still be the same session. The session will only end when there has been a period of 30 minutes without an event being triggered. This difference will lead to a higher number of App Session events compared to Session Start events. It's important to use the "session length" (App Session) and "session duration" (Session Start) properties to see how long the sessions were.