Possible sources for discrepancies and recommended actions

Note, it is impossible (or near impossible) to get exact numbers between different analytics systems.  By following the reconciliation steps below, we should be able to reduce the variance to a reasonable percentage.

  • Ensure that both systems’ analytics tags are present on the same set of pages. - Use browser’s developer tools.
  • Ensure that both systems’ analytics are sending the same set of events the same number of times. – Use browser’s developer tools.
  • Reporting of non-page-load events. Refer to AJAX web applications.
  • Reporting of events where the same URL is refreshed (does not change) – Refer to Page Refresh.
  • Check the difference in placement of the two analytics tags. If there is a JavaScript error on the page between the two tags that causes JavaScript evaluation to be aborted, events will not be reported into the system having the bottommost-placed tag (Cxense recommended placement). - Use browser’s developer tools.


Other possible explanation(s) for variance in Page Views (PV) and/or Unique Users/Visitors (UU/UV) are:

  • The two systems might not be measuring traffic over exactly the same time period. E.g., the two systems might differ in when they define that a day starts and ends and how they handle time zones.
  • The two systems might differ in how they detect robots and how they report such traffic. E.g., one system might detect a given request as coming from a robot, whereas the other does not.
  • The two systems might handle non-JavaScript clients differently. E.g., one system might not count visitors that do not have JavaScript enabled.
  • The two systems might count things differently. E.g., one system might report estimated counts using sampling whereas the Cxense platform provides exact counts.
  • The two systems might report data back at different times. E.g., if the user navigates away from the page before any asynchronous reporting of data takes place, some events might not be reported.
  • The two systems has different approach for counting unique users. Some analytic tools rely only on third party cookies. Safari rejects third party cookies, so all the Safari browser users will be counted as new users in every new session. 
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