You Ask, I Answer: Unifying Mobile and Desktop Users

Anne asks, “How do you easily find out if mobile users who abandon your form come back later and use the desktop to complete the task?”

You Ask, I Answer: Unifying Mobile and Desktop Users
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and asks, How do you easily find out if mobile users who abandon your form, come back later and use the desktop to complete the task? We really good question.

cross device and cross instance, tracking have been kind of a bear to track for a number of years.

But the good news is that a lot of analytics tools, like Google Analytics, for example, are making that somewhat easier.

The catch is that whatever analytics tool we’re using has to be able to track across devices, it has to know that Chris on the mobile phone is the same as Chris on the desktop is the same as Chris on the iPad, right.

And the way that services like Google do that is they every time you touch a Google property of some kinds, Search, Gmail, YouTube, etc.

If you’re logged in, then the device ID because every single device has an ID, a unique identifier tag to it.

It is unified with your login.

And then Google knows, hey, even though Chris is on this device, this has its own device, and this has its own device, and this has its own device.

Chris’s Google ID is across all three, so they’re probably the same person.

Now, that means that you need customers who are within Google’s ecosystem, Which, admittedly is pretty easy these days, right? Because of things like Google search, and YouTube being such huge massive properties that there’s a chance that somebody is going to sort of identify with their Google data.

The challenge is, if you have an audience that isn’t in Google’s ecosystem, right, there are some folks who are, you know, for example, in the cybersecurity industry, who are understandably, very, very reticent to share any information whatsoever with large tech companies.

And so tracking those people period can be very, very different, difficult.

So the feature that you want to look for in Google Analytics is something called Google signals.

And this is something you have to enable, you have to go through it, you go into Google Analytics, and you look for in your settings, and you enable it after you read through all the legal paperwork.

And there are going to be some industries where you may not be able to for some regulatory reasons, you may not be able to use Google signals.

So you’ll want to check with your legal team, please, and not just turn it on and go, Oh, hey, that’s that didn’t work so and then once Google signals is enabled, then you will start to see those unified users in Google Analytics.

Remember, as with all things, Google, nothing is ever retroactive, right? From the day you turn it on, you have better data, but it doesn’t impact any previously collected data.

And so I would talk to your legal team and get that turned on sooner rather than later.

You don’t need to do anything special other than turn it on Google kind of handles the rest of it.

But you need to turn it on as quickly as your legal department will allow you to, so that you can begin unifying with users.

Now, there are other ways.

If you don’t want to use Google solution, there are other systems, customer data platforms that can do that.

The challenge with those is, again, they still rely on third party data to a fair degree.

And they are what my friend Tom Webster would call reassuringly expensive.

In terms of the capabilities of bringing together that single view of the customer, some customer data platforms can easily run, you know, 50 $60,000 US per month, per month.

So they are not necessarily for for everybody.

Google signals, on the other hand, is kind of bundled in for free.

And even though you don’t get unified data in a downstream system, like a CRM, you at least get the view of it in Google Analytics.

So that would be my suggestion would be making sure that you use the systems and the tools that are available to try and figure out if that mobile user then came back on the desktop, and you can see that in Google Analytics, you can look at goal completions where somebody split across mobile simple devices it’s one of the built in reports so once you’ve got signals in place then you’re all good to go it’s a good question thanks for asking


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