Steam Store Traffic - Dive Into the Latest Steam Updates
Today, we are pleased to dive into a series of upcoming changes to the traffic data reporting provided to game developers on Steam. This reporting system offers valuable insights into overall traffic to store pages and measures the effectiveness of external sourced traffic while prioritizing player privacy and preferences.
This update consists of three major parts, which will be gradually implemented over the next few months. Let’s delve into the details!
Putting Player Privacy First:
When discussing the tools and features in this update, it is essential to highlight that player privacy remains a top priority. Steam continues to uphold its commitment to not share personally identifiable information. However, this privacy-focused approach necessitates certain trade-offs, limiting the specificity of some reporting. In cases where traffic sources fall below a certain volume threshold, they will be reported as “other.” Additionally, Steam does not collect or store demographic information such as age, gender, or race.
Updates to Store & Steam Platform Traffic Reporting:
The Steamworks back-end already offers comprehensive reports on traffic within Steam, including traffic from external sources. These reports provide valuable insights into how players discover store pages.
Based on feedback from game developers, Steam have planned several key updates based on the most-requested additions:
Geographic Breakdown: Traffic reporting will soon include regional breakdowns of visitors to store pages. This feature will be particularly helpful in determining language support requirements for games or identifying server locations for multiplayer games.
Improved Identification of External Sources: Developers have expressed the need for more information about the websites sending traffic to their store pages. In response, Steam will expand the presentation of external traffic sources to include details on common domains.
Updates to Steam’s UTM System:
The UTM system on Steam assists developers in measuring the effectiveness of marketing campaigns by providing aggregated data on user conversion.
The following key updates will be introduced to the UTM system:
Increased Tracking Percentage: Steam has been diligently working on enhancing tracking capabilities to identify cases where players follow a UTM link from a website and subsequently complete the transaction on their Steam desktop client. This conversion data will be reported in aggregate, ensuring no personal information is disclosed.
One-Day Conversion Tracking: Steam are addressing technical issues that previously limited conversion tracking to update on a slower cadence (thank god!). Soon, UTM campaigns will start reporting conversions within 24 hours. The conversion window will last for three days, allowing you to observe increases in traffic and conversions when reviewing previous days’ statistics.
Geographic Breakdown: Similar to the Store & Steam Platform Traffic Reporting, the UTM system will also include regional breakdowns of visitors to store pages. This will aid in determining language preferences and server requirements for multiplayer games.
Visitor Device Category: Each campaign’s device types (e.g., “mobile” vs. “desktop”) will be reported, enabling you to understand how your audience is discovering your game.
New vs. Returning Users: Stats will be segmented to indicate the percentage of visits from new players versus returning players, providing insights into user acquisition and retention.
Terminating Google Analytics Support on Steam
Starting this July, Google will cease operations of Universal Analytics (UA), a third-party system utilized to measure traffic sources on Steam store pages. In its place, they will introduce Google Analytics 4 (GA4), a newly announced replacement.
Over time, Steam have realized that Google’s tracking solutions do not align well with their commitment to customer privacy. Consequently, as we transition to GA4, they have made the decision to discontinue support for Google’s analytics systems on Steam. Instead, their focus lies on incorporating the most valuable aspects of aggregated reporting directly into Steam, as elaborated above.
If you currently rely on UA, please be aware that starting from July 1st, your Google Analytics reporting will no longer receive data from Steam.