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Google Analytics limits and (possible) disadvantages

June 12, 2013 at 11:10 AM


by Mikul Patel

Digital Marketing Consultant at Matraxis

Deciding on which web analytics package your company should use can be a difficult task for any digital marketer to mule over. Analytics packages are forever changing with new and improved features, so it is important for any digital marketer to know their organisations analytics requirements, budget and internal expertise.


In this blog article I will briefly outline some of the key limitations for the most popular web analytics package on the market: Google Analytics (correct as of June 2013).


 google analytics screenshots consultancy



Google Analytics – Widely used and loved

Being a free analytics product, it is no surprise that Google Analytics is the most widely used package in the digital environment. Last year, Google reported that over 10million websites are now using it.


With this comes the need to offer a product that is easy to use and reliable. Because of this, Google have to limit some features to avoid heavy users from abusing the system. Some general features and limitations include:



General limitations

  • 10 million server hits per month (a single visit can generate multiple server hits)
  • Standard accounts that send more than 200,000 visits per day to Google Analytics will result in the reports being refreshed only once a day
  • Data is owned by Google
  • Historical data is held for 25 months



Session limitations

  • 5 custom variable limit per request
  • Maximum number of requests per single session visit: 500
  • Maximum requests per 5 seconds: 10



Reports limitations

  • Data sampling is applied when more than 500,000 sessions are involved or more than 1 million unique dimension combinations
  • Not all currencies available to support global ecommerce reporting
  • Unable to cross-compare profile reports through GA interface
  • Maximum number of advanced segments that can be added to a single report: 4



Goal limitations

  • Maximum number of goals per profile: 25
  • Maximum number of goal sets per profile: 5
  • Maximum number of goals per goal set: 5
  • Maximum number of goal funnel steps: 20



API limitations

  • 50,000 requests per project per day
  • 10 queries per second (QPS) per IP
  • No more than 4 requests at the same time. (per IP address)
  • No more than 10 requests for ALL Google API per IP address within a given 1 second period.
  • Core Reporting API Limits
  • 10,000 requests per profile per day
  • 10 concurrent requests per profile


Is Google Analytics right for me?

This is difficult question to answer as needs will differ between every organisation. Where one organisation may require a tool to simply measure online campaign performance; another may require advanced statistics on campaign attribution based on specific visitors as opposed to aggregated visits.


If you are a small/medium sized organisation, Google Analytics should provide enough information for your needs. With the recent release of Google Premium, large organisations can also use Google Analytics without the limitations I have already listed.



Google Analytics Consultancy

Whilst it is not uncommon to see organisations use Google Analytics alongside other paid-for analytics tool such as Webtrends Analytics, the services of a Google Analytics Consultant can help to evolve an organisations marketing strategy. A fresh analysis of your website may bring up findings that you would not have thought of in-house. 



Matraxis is the leading independent expert in web analytics and helping organisations measure and optimise their digital campaigns. If you would like more information about Matraxis services and solutions, get in contact with us!

Tags: Google Analytics Webtrends Google Analytics Premium Web Analytics Campaign Measurement Digital Marketing
Category: Web Analytics

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