What the value (not set) means

At a glance

(not set) is a placeholder name that Analytics uses when it hasn't received any information for the dimension that you have selected.

You might see (not set) as the value for dimensions in the Advertising, Behaviour, Visitors/Users dimension groups in your reports.

An in-depth look

The cause for (not set) to appear as a dimension value is specific to each report. For details on why you see (not set), and ways that you might be able to correct this, see the individual report sections below.

The Advertising reports

AdWords

If (not set) is appearing in your AdWords reports, it means that the website or app that you're tracking in the Analytics account is receiving visits from an AdWords account that is not linked to the reporting view. You should review the following:

  • Auto-tagging is on but cost data is not applied (See: Missing Data in AdWords Reports)
  • There is a redirect in the URL
  • The gclid parameter is altered or dropped from the ad (See: CPC Data Not Collected)
  • Auto and manual tagging are being used at the same time
  • Manually tagged URLs are missing a parameter

Occasionally, information related to a click can be lost even if auto-tagging is enabled. As a result, you may see some (not set) entries instead of keyword, ad content or campaign information that could not be collected.

Matched Search Query

If (not set) is appearing in your AdWords > Matched Search Query reports, it is likely that everything in the AdWords section is (not set) as outlined in the above section. However, if the regular AdWords reports (Campaigns & Keywords) are reporting data correctly, then there are several additional reasons why (not set) could appear in the Matched Search Query report:

  • Google Display Network traffic (this traffic does not have an associated query, so will show as (not set))
  • Manually tagged campaigns (this report only works for auto-tagged traffic)
  • Invalid clicks will show up as (not set)
  • In the AdWords search-terms report, all terms classified as "(other search terms)" will be reported as (not set).

The Behaviour reports

Site Content > Landing Pages

If you see landing page = (not set), this is generally due to a visit with no page or screen view level hits included.

It’s possible to have a visit that doesn’t include a page or a screen view, but does include another kind of interaction hit type, like an Events or E-commerce hit type. To see a few examples of visits with different kinds of hit type, refer to the article about the difference between Entrances and Visits/Sessions.

To identify which hit type is causing the issue, use the advanced filter (found at the top of the data table) to restrict the data to include page/screen views matching exactly 0 in the following reports: Behaviour > Events, Acquisition > Social > Plugins, and Conversions > E-commerce reports.

In most cases, the cause is either a view filter that removes specific page/screen views, or the omission of page view tracking on web pages or the omission of screen view tracking on Android or iOS apps.

The Audience reports

Technology > Browser & OS > Screen Resolution

It is quite common that the screen resolution that has the highest E-Commerce conversion rate is (not set). Additionally, a high incidence of (not set) E-Commerce rates can occur for these dimensions:

  • Flash Version (occurs if Flash is disabled in web browser settings)
  • Screen Colours
  • Language (in demographics report)

Generally, these traffic segments are small, and so are not statistically significant.

Special reports

Customised reports

When you select a traffic-source related dimension (such as Campaign) in a Custom Report, the dimension is applied to all visits in the account, not just paid search (often referred to as CPC) traffic. Therefore, visits that do not have any campaign information associated (e.g. direct, referral traffic) will be reported under (not set). You will see something similar if you select the Campaigns report under Acquisition > All Traffic Sources / All Referrals rather than the Campaigns report under Acquisitions > AdWords.

Instead of creating a Custom Report, the best way to get this information would be to use an advanced segment in the specific report.

Visitors Flow

Similar to the custom reports, when you select a dimension like Campaign in the Visitor Flow, you may see (not set) in the Funnel path because all visits from direct and referral traffic would not have campaign information. If you do the maths, then you'll see that: (all other campaigns sources) + (not set) = total visits.