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Users

Understanding the Importance and Concept of Users in WebEngage

Understanding Users, User Attributes and User Profiles

The following section has been designed to help you understand the different types of users, user attributes and their application across your WebEngage dashboard. Let’s start with the basics.

Who is a User?

At WebEngage, anybody who has interacted with your business at least once is called a User.
This definition includes visitors who interact with your mobile app, website, other online platforms and offline avenues.

This brings us to the question, how does WebEngage detect users?

It’s pretty simple actually. Once you connect your platforms (app, website, CRM, server) with your WebEngage account, we automatically start detecting and gleaning basic information about your users in real-time. All this data gets populated across the following sections of your dashboard:

  • Users (Basic information related to the user like location, browser, App ID, OS and so on)
  • Events (General activity of users like login, logout, app install, app uninstall, session started, session ended and so on)

Additionally, you can manually upload historical user details or offline user details via the Data Management section of your dashboard. This way, you’ll have all your user data in one place.

What is a User Attribute?

The term User Attribute refers to all the details attached to a user which help us understand their channel preferences, technological preferences, personal details and spending patterns- painting a complete picture of who they are.

These details play an important role in understanding user personas - allowing you to create highly targeted and personalized communication strategies.

Types of User Attributes

When using your WebEngage account, you will notice that user attributes have been bucketed into different types. Let’s understand this in detail.

System Attributes

These are minute details that the system or WebEngage automatically gleans for all the users who interact with your app and website. So generic details like a user’s gender, date of birth etc. are called system attributes.

All the system attributes gleaned by us are listed here for your reference. (This means you don’t need to worry about tracking all this data!)

Custom Attributes

These are minute details that any business, like yours, can custom define for their users. This could be any kind of data like;

  • Reward Points
  • Customer ID
  • Subscription Renewal Date
  • Customer Type (Silver, Gold, Platinum) and so on.

Types of Users

At WebEngage, anybody who has ever interacted with your app or website is called a 'User'. Depending on the kind of information shared by them, the can either be;

  • Unknown Users
  • or Known User

You can think of Unknown Users as ‘Anonymous Users’ and Known Users as ‘Identified Users’. Just like you would use details like a user’s email address, phone number or customer ID to identify your users - so does your WebEngage dashboard. These details are called Unique Identifiers in WebEngage and can be custom defined by you when setting up your account.

What is a Unique Identifier?

A unique identifier is a piece of information, generally shared by the users themselves, or attributed by you to each user, helping you identify them. For example, if you define email address as the unique identifier, then all users who have shared their email address on your app/website will become Known Users. And users who are yet to share their email address will be treated as Unknown Users.

Please refer to, Identifying Users for step-by-step instructions on setting this up for your account.

What is a User Profile?

A user profile is a comprehensive file which contains all the details related to each user that has ever interacted with your business. Irrespective of whether the users are Unknown or Known, their user profiles contains details against all the system attributes and custom attributes being tracked for your account.

With reference to the example above, If an unknown user shares their email address on a later date, then they will become Known Users and all their existing details and behavioural history will be merged with their new, Known User profile.

Each user profile is a treasure trove of data, designed to give you deeper insights into your users’ needs, preferences and behaviour. These details have been bucketed into 5 categories;

  • Basic Information
  • Attributes
  • Devices
  • Channels
  • Events

Let’s break down each one for you, starting with Basic Information.

1. Basic Information

This is section includes basic details like a user’s;

  • Contact information (name, email address, phone number)
  • Their activity (first seen, last seen, total sessions, date of identification, last location)
  • The source through which you have acquired the user (channel, campaign name, landing page, referrer)
  • The segments that are currently included in
  • Details of the most recent campaigns they have interacted with

2. Attributes

You can think of attributes like the smaller details related to a person which give us cues about their personality, preferences and background. Hence, this section will include details like a user's;

  • Birthday
  • Marital status
  • Purchase history
  • Reward points
  • Date of birth
  • Gender
  • Educational background

3. Devices

Now let’s understand the concept of ‘devices’. Just like you would refer to a mobile phone, tablet
or desktop as a device - so does your WebEngage dashboard. Thus, the devices section of a user profile contains details of the devices which have been used to interact with your app or website.

Hence, this section has further been divided into the following subsections;

  • Web
  • Android
  • iOS

Under each subsection, you will find more details about the devices being used by your users, like;

  • Device ID
  • Browser details
  • Total sessions
  • Date of the first session,
  • Date of last interaction and so on.

4. Channels

In marketing lingo, a channel would typically refer to any channels of communication like push messaging, in-app messaging, SMS, web pop-ups, web surveys, web push, email and so on.

Similarly, even your WebEngage dashboard refers to these as channels.

Hence, under this section, you will see a breakdown of all channels of engagement listed in your dashboard against by several parameters like;

  • A user’s reachability
  • The total number of messages sent through a campaign
  • The total number of campaigns sent
  • Number of conversions
  • The last message received by the user

5. Events

Any actions performed by users, across your app and website are called events. For example, let’s say that you have an e-commerce app which requires users to perform certain actions, like;

  • Select a category
  • View a product
  • Add it to cart
  • Complete checkout

All these actions are called events. So, you can think of events as behavioural data, which helps you keep a track of what your users are doing.

Thus, the events section of a user profile will show you a list of all the latest events performed by the user, with more details attached to each like;

  • Date and time
  • Location
  • Browser
  • Campaign name
  • Screen name
  • Page name

Detailed Read on Events

Please refer to Events for a detailed understanding of the concept of Events in WebEngage and its application across your dashboard.


What's Next

We hope this has warmed you up to all the concepts related to users and their application across your WebEngage dashboard. Let's walk you through how you can analyse users to gain deep insights into their preferences and personas.

Analysing Users