A new undocumented Advanced Segmentation limitation in Google Analytics

I was already feeling the pinch from the short work week (due to the Labor Day holiday) when I came across a Google Analytics reporting limitation.

I attempted to show a colleague how to use the Advanced Segmentation reporting feature, a powerful tool that easily isolates traffic for further analysis. I regularly use this feature to look at the behavior of a user segment, such as visitor traffic from a specific geography (ex: in Georgia) or a specific device (ex: iPhone vs. Android). When my colleague logged into Google Analytics, the Advanced Segments link was missing from the interface.

advanced-segmentation-link
Advanced Segments link in Google Analytics reporting interface

Thinking that it was an account permission issue, I immediately started to elevate her account access level, switching her from the basic Read & Analyze level to the Collaborate level and then to the full-featured Edit level (aka Admin level). None of these account access levels worked. Knowing that I use my Gmail account, I deleted her account and added her Gmail account (ex: [email protected]). I also assigned her account only Read & Analyze level access. When she logged into Google Analytics, the Advanced Segments link was present. Ugh!

It turns out that Advanced Segments is only available to user with a Gmail address. Users that access Google Analytics with their work/private email account (ex: [email protected]) cannot view/use the Advanced Segments.

There are users who’ve reported other undocumented limitations with Advanced Segmentation, such as the inability to create more than 100 custom segments, but never this one. I hope that this post saves you from unnecessary aggravation!

What other limitations have you run into in Google Analytics?