Reaching the Individual with New Cross Device Reporting in Google Analytics

December 4, 2019

With the recent release of cross-device reporting in Google Analytics, brands can take action on their people-centric insight and optimize marketing based on user-level behavior. Brands can now reach desired audiences based on actual behavior at the individual level, instead of making decisions based on fuzzy measurement duplicated by browser and app-based cookies.

How is cross device different from User ID reporting?

Google’s previous User ID solution had a major limitation: the ability to analyze only users who created a Google account and browsed while logged in. But Google’s new cross-device measurement means accuracy no longer depends on whether or not a user is logged in. 

Brands now have the ability to understand crucial metrics such as device overlap and steps within the customer journey, even if a user browses on one device as a guest, browses on a separate device while logged in, and purchases on a different third device.

In addition, cross-device measurement doesn’t require any technical code updates or specified implementation in Google Tag Manager, versus User ID reporting which does; simply switch on cross-device measurement within Google Analytics to collect cross-device data.  

Finally, there’s no need to create additional Google Analytics Views in order to understand a view, across-devices. The new set of reports integrate seamlessly within the master view, which helps you efficiently access multi-device insights.

What’s the value proposition?

With cross-device conversion reporting in place, brands can not only take action based on steps within the customer journey, they can also collapse cookie stacks into individual users and understand trued conversions based on device contribution.

While brands currently optimize media spend based on device overlap data, cross-device reporting offers a new view on incrementality and provides an actionable understanding of the role non-desktop touchpoints play in pushing users down the funnel towards conversion. 

With this insight, brands have the ability to shift their budget toward the most efficient paths and invest in incremental revenue for flat or decreased cost. In addition, brands have the ability to analyze sales based on originating devices, which improves efficiency for upper-funnel targeting and provides insight into which devices customers prefer when they initially research a brand.

All of the benefits of cross-device reporting add up to a complete view of marketing impact, which allows the brand to run smarter campaign optimization.

How does it work?

Cross-device measurement uses Google Signals from several Google products to identify a person using multiple devices. Designed to enhance remarketing and reporting, Google Signals allows Google Analytics 360 audiences to serve ads in Cross Device-eligible campaigns. This behavior modeling is also used in Google Ads (formerly AdWords) and other Google Marketing Platform advertising products, like Display & Video 360 (formerly DoubleClick Bid Manager).

Cross-Device reports appear in your Google Analytics account and provide information regarding device overlap, device paths, deduplicated channel performance, and acquisition device.

How can you implement cross-device measurement? 

To implement cross-device measurement, enable “Google Signals” in the Admin section of your Analytics account. Google Analytics will now collect data for cross-device measurement reports.  


Ready to take your ads, and your business, to the next level? Get in touch with the DELVE team today.

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