Android Application Tracking through Google Analytics

By Sudhir Mishra | 18.05.2014 | analytics

We’re in the era of mobile, where there are 5.3 billion mobile subscribers worldwide and these numbers are increasing very rapidly. Most of the mobile subscribers are using mobile apps for either shopping or for accessing social networking sites or playing games or listening online songs and etc.

There are so many mobile apps in the market whether it’s for iPhone or Android or Blackberry or Symbian based mobile phones and Windows OS based smart phones.

There are so many mobile development companies or mobile developers who build mobile applications but afterwards they don’t know the effectiveness of their application in terms of how many persons actually using it after downloading, what’s bounce rate, from which mobile handset your application is being accessed and so many factors.

For that you should start tracking mobile application using an analytics tool like Google Analytics. Here I’m going to explain google analytics implementation for following mobile applications.

  1. Android
  2. iPhone

Initializing the project

To start with the tracking we first need to add the tracking SDK to the app project. The SDK is included in the latest Google Play service package.

First step – Add permissions

In order to collect data for the app, we need to add permission for accessing the Internet.

Adding the below permissions to your application’s AndroidManifest.xml manifest file would ensure that your app can send data to Google Analytics.

<uses-permission android:name=”android.permission.INTERNET” />
<uses-permission android:name=”android.permission.ACCESS_NETWORK_STATE” />

Second step – setting up a View in Google Analytics

You’ll have to setup new profile or view in google analytics, then note down UA number of your view which would be of the format UA-XXXXX-Y

Third step – implementation

The implementation involves adding code snippets in your app codebase at appropriate places. You can track below activities as per your android application :

  1. Screen View Level
  2. Event Level
  3. Custom dimension and metric
  4. Ecommerce Tracking

For instance, we’ve implemented screen view level and event level tracking of google analytics for My Music Player android app. It has 3 to 4 different tabs i.e. Albums, Artists, Songs and Playlist. We’ve implemented screen view level implementation for tracking screen view details of different tabs / screens as with reference to below image.

enter image description here

Creating a app tracker
// Get tracker.
    Tracker t = ((AnalyticsSampleApp) getActivity()
                    .getApplication())
                    .getTracker(TrackerName.APP_TRACKER);
Screen View level implementation

Through screen view level implementation of application, you can get idea about unique screen views of your application’s screen as like traditional app, like unique screen view for setting section or help section.

For getting screen view level information you’ll have to implement below standard code to across all the tabs or classes or screen of your application,

// Set screen name.
// Where path is a String representing the screen name.
t.setScreenName(path);

// Send a screen view.
t.send(new HitBuilders.AppViewBuilder().build());
Event tracking

Through event tracking implementation, you can get idea about which actions i.e. play, pause or stop has been taken in your android application through applying event tracking in Google Analytics.

For Instance, we’ve implemented event tracking for tracking which action has been taken in My Music Player App i.e. play or pause or stop or share it with Facebook or Twitter with reference to below image.

enter image description here

For event tracking implementation, you’ll have to add below code across the classes or functions of where buttons are called

// Build and send an Event.
t.send(new HitBuilders.EventBuilder()
    .setCategory("Clicks")  // category i.e. Player Buttons
    .setAction("Button")    // action i.e.  Play
    .setLabel("clicked")    // label i.e.  any meta-data
    .build());

Google Analytics Reports for Android Applications

After implementation for android application successfully, you can view the analytics report for your application in your Google Analytics account. You can see the Overview Section report that includes Sessions, Screen Views, Screens/Session and # of new and returning users in your application.

enter image description here

You can view screen level performance of your android application in Google Analytics with detailed information like average time on screen , unique screen views etc in below image.

enter image description here

In next series of mobile apps tracking blog post, I’ll be covering iPhone Application Tracking through Google Analytics. Stay tuned here for more updates on Google Analytics Implementation.

Android Application Tracking through Google Analytics by
Sudhir Mishra

Sudhir Mishra

Sudhir is a Technical Analyst at Tatvic. He likes to develop data-analysis applications and automating the analysis process. Google

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  • http://twitter.com/aaronlintz Aaron Lintz

    Crazy clever work! That is a great way to learn how people actually use your app. I had no idea that was possible.

  • http://www.tatvic.com Dipali

    Hey Aaron,

    Thanks for your appreciation, It’s easy to implement google analytics for android apps.

  • 1988 Kalpesh

    thanks for the detail but can you tell me how track Session time, Unique and new Visitors

  • Vkonnect App

    this is showing the statistics on web(on analytics account). what if i want to show it on my android phone?? cab u help me for this?

    • http://www.tatvic.com Dipali

      Hello,

      You can check google analytics data on your android phone by installing analytics application. check this URL, https://play.google.com/store/search?q=google+analytics&c=apps

      Hope this will help you.

    • Dipali Thakkar

      Hello, 
      You can check google analytics data on your android phone by installing analytics application. check this URL,  https://play.google.com/store/search?q=google+analytics&c=apps 

      Hope this will help you. 

  • http://newsresults.in/ Mayurpatel2008

    i was try to install it but not working anybudy guide me….

  • Imag

    just a thought, but does bounce rate really make any sense on an app (other than single page apps, of course).

    I mean, how do you bounce on some random subpage, that you can’t access from outside the app structure itself?

  • http://www.dcgla.com/private-cloud-solutions/cloud-computing-los-angeles.html cloud hosting los angeles

    So far I never heard about Google analytic for Android application..It is absolutely new for me…After read entire post step by step and all info are blow in my mind. I promise you that  once time i will be try it..Thanks for sharing…

  • Rajeesh Ramakrishnan

    i’m creating a radio, how can i get the visited station duration. ie; how long a particular user listened a station.

    • http://www.tatvic.com Suketu Parikh

      You may keep a timer on start of a radio and once the user change’s the radio station you may send event tracking call with recorded duration.

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