How to measure success in gaming: 10 key gaming metrics you need to know
How do you measure success in gaming? Source: GEEIQ’s data platform

How to measure success in gaming: 10 key gaming metrics you need to know

A deep dive into 10 statistics you need to measure, set, and hit KPIs in virtual worlds. 


The number of brands investing in gaming is growing. By the end of 2023, there were over 700 brands in virtual worlds with over 1000 activations across Roblox, Fortnite, Minecraft and the other platforms GEEIQ tracks. With more and more brands activating on gaming platforms, there’s an increased demand for gaming intelligence that enables marketers to accurately gauge in-game interest and engagement. 

At GEEIQ’s latest webinar, Justin Breton, Director of Brand Experiences & Strategic Partnerships at Walmart, emphasized this, saying that brands were starting to ask: 

What are the data points that we actually can get from this that go beyond just visits or time spent? How do we actually start to tell a story that shows that the efforts that we’re putting into [gaming] platforms are actually driving the brand and business forward?

This article looks at 10 key metrics your in-game virtual strategy should track to get a better understanding of how to measure, set, and hit KPIs in virtual worlds. 

Scroll 👇 to level up your brand’s virtual strategy and start making data-driven decisions. 

Why measure success on gaming platforms?

As with any marketing channel, brands that measure and set KPIs within virtual worlds will reach their goals faster than those that don’t. Insight into key gaming marketing metrics will allow your brand to improve and optimize in-game campaigns to achieve your desired outcomes and goals. Knowing which statistics matter will also help you showcase tangible results to stakeholders within the business. 

As Michael Herriger, CEO of Fortnite creative studio, Atlas Creative, explained: 

Gone are the days of innovation just for innovation's sake. I feel like in the earlier stages a lot of people were just coming in with that as the goal. And now it's more about those marketing standards and trying to figure out how to take something that's a little untraditional and fit it into traditional marketing.

With platform-specific data analysis tools that turn complex gaming analytics into digestible visuals, brands no longer have an excuse to go into virtual worlds without a clear strategy. Those who make data-driven decisions will win a larger audience in the long term. 

10 key metrics you need to measure success in gaming

To measure popularity track Daily Active Users (DAU), Monthly Active Users (MAU), and unique visitors. Source: GEEIQ’s Private Data Dashboard

1. Number of active users

Perhaps the most commonly cited gaming metric, ‘number of active users’ refers to the total count of players who interact with a game within a specific timeframe. This is often broken down into DAU (Daily Active Users) and MAU (Monthly Active Users). 

This top-level metric is vital for brands both when they are assessing what platform to invest in and later when monitoring the popularity of their virtual brand activation. 

If your brand is still deciding what platform to invest in, number of active users should feed into your assessment to make sure it is worth your time and money.

For example, as of Q4 2023, Roblox had around 71.5 million daily active users, making it attractive for brands. However, platforms like Decentraland now have less than 8000 daily active users. Hence, going into the latter is less likely to be cost-effective, resulting in a lower ROI. The social media equivalent might be choosing to advertise on Tiktok over Houseparty. 

Within your brand activation, monitoring DAU can pinpoint what drives player interest and engagement, aiding in strategic planning for future marketing initiatives. Brands should monitor active users to assess whether players are happy with in-game updates, like UGC (user-generated content) drops, custom events, and influencer partnerships. These forms of community-led initiatives enrich the player experience and deliver value to the community, increasing your active users. 

2. Unique visitors 

‘Unique visitors’ refers to the number of users who visit your virtual brand activation within a certain period, without counting repeat visits from the same user. Social media marketers can compare it to unique impressions on a social post. 

This metric offers a clearer picture of total audience engagement when compared to DAU or MAU. It is ideal for gauging brand reach and identifying growth opportunities or assessing loyalty. 

If your brand's goal is to tap into a wider audience, you will potentially prioritize unique visitors as a metric. If you're looking to cultivate brand advocates and deliver value to a loyal, returning user base, you might prioritize DAU over unique visits.

3. Conversion Rate

Conversion rate in gaming measures the ratio of item sales to the number of visits your brand activation is receiving. This provides insight into purchase intent, so you can gauge the number of visitors potentially interested in purchasing your brand’s virtual items. You can compare this to other marketing metrics, for example, measuring the amount of event registrations versus the number of attendees.  

A high conversion rate indicates an engaging UGC content strategy that offers items your players want, reflecting positively on your brand’s presence within gaming. 

To increase your revenue and monetize gaming make sure to track ARPDAU, ARPU and sales conversion rates. Source: GEEIQ’s Private Data Dashboard

4.ARPU (Average Revenue Per User) & ARPDAU (Average Revenue Per Daily Active User) 

Average revenue per user is a key performance indicator that measures the average amount of revenue your virtual experience generates per user. 

ARPU offers critical insight into consumer spending with your brand on gaming platforms. It can be challenging to convert players in free-to-play games. As such, ARPU is key to gauging whether players are interested in your UGC items and willing to spend with your brand specifically. 

For a more nuanced analysis, you can monitor ARPDAU, which breaks down daily revenue based on user traffic. 

ARPDAU is essential for brands aiming to optimize revenue strategies on gaming platforms. It enables you to create more precise revenue targets that justify investments to key financial stakeholders. If your brand is looking to reinvest the revenue you generate in-game, as many brands do, this metric will give you a better picture of how much you can make depending on your DAU/MAU. 

Measure brand engagement by tracking average session time, sessions per user, and average user time. Source: GEEIQ’s Private Data Dashboard

5. Average session time 

Session time, a key metric in virtual worlds, refers to how long a player spends within your virtual experience. 

This is a critical indicator of engagement - you want to know how much time people are spending with your brand. Longer session times signify deeper immersion into your brand’s world. 

Gaming has higher engagement rates compared to traditional media, but you still want to maximize session time and enhance brand interaction. To boost session time on platforms like Roblox, you can introduce new elements like user-generated content rewards, interactive mini-games, and more.

6. Sessions per user

Sessions per user tells a brand how often people enter your brand’s virtual experience. 

Gaming is a crowded space, so brand activations need to stand out. How often a player returns to your experience within a specific timeframe can be an indicator of how likely they are to spend time with your brand over another. 

A higher frequency of sessions per user, such as 5-10 sessions daily, indicates strong engagement and enjoyment from your audience. Your virtual experience is likely to create advocates for your brand. 

Lower sessions per user is an indicator that your experience faces challenges in both acquiring new players and retaining them. That's why making decisions based on data is key to a brand's virtual strategy.

Looking at session time and sessions per user together will give you more insight into user behavior and engagement levels with your brand’s virtual environment.

For example, if you have a Roblox experience with a game mechanic that relies on visitors using portals between experiences, like Walmart Discovered, players will be leaving and returning to your experience more often. 

As such, your average session time might be low, but your sessions per user may be higher than other comparable brand experiences. Your brand would only uncover this by tracking user behavior metrics as a whole.

Another session-based statistic is the average user time. This differs from average session time as it incorporates the total time an average user spends in-game within 24 hours.

Know what players want from your brand by tracking item sales performance, type of items sold, item earnings, and equip rates. Source: GEEIQ’s Private Data Dashboard

7. Item Sales Performance 

As the virtual worlds economy evolves and expands, e-commerce within gaming platforms is becoming increasingly important to brands, as is their ability to track these sales.

Brands just have to look at the popularity of the Roblox creator marketplace. 

Tracking item sales performance will give your brand a nuanced understanding of consumer preferences on your preferred gaming platform. It can also tell you what real life consumers expect from you. 

“It’s not just about tracking your top-level number of sales, though,” explains Emmy Pollock, Account Manager at GEEIQ who has worked with brands, like Givenchy Beauty, on their in-game UGC item strategy. She added:

By analyzing specific item sales metrics, you can identify which item categories - hats, accessories, shirts, pants - are most appealing and discern the performance of individual items. That level of detail helps brands understand what the gaming community truly values and wants from them. Then, you can strategically invest in popular item types, optimizing your brand’s ROI and brand visibility.
Measure sentiment around your virtual brand activation by tracking approval rates and favorites. Source: GEEIQ’s private data dashboard

8. Approval rate 

The calculation of approval rates varies between different gaming platforms. However, this generally refers to the like and dislike ratio that your virtual branded experience receives. 

Approval rates can be helpful for brands running incentives for likes, for example, by offering a free in-game power-up in exchange for a like. In this way, you can track the success of such incentives. Yet, this can also artificially skew approval rates and make them misleading. 

Still, a low approval rate is likely to indicate dissatisfaction, as players are actively marking that they dislike your virtual experience. At that point, you can think of ways to deliver more value to your players, for example, by dropping limited UGC items. 

Tracking favorites could provide a more accurate gauge of audience engagement. Favorites imply a stronger endorsement than mere likes or dislikes, offering a clearer perspective on how your brand resonates with players in gaming worlds. 

Measure loyalty to your brand’s virtual experience by tracking retention and stickiness. Source: GEEIQ’s Private Data Dashboard

9. Retention & Stickiness 

Retention and stickiness are defined differently by different developers and platforms. GEEIQ defines them as: 

  • Retention - How many new players return on the 1st, 7th, and 30th day after their first session. 
  • Stickiness - All players, new and existing, who come back on the 1st, 7th, and 30th day following their first session. 

These metrics are pivotal in understanding whether your brand’s virtual activation is building a community of loyal players. Consistently monitoring fluctuations allows brands to strategically innovate, introducing new content or features to maintain or enhance player interest and loyalty. You want to avoid seeing high numbers of visitors when you first launch, only to see stickiness and retention drop later on. 

Gather audience demographics in gaming and virtual worlds. Track your audience’s age, income and location. Source: GEEIQ’s Private Data Dashboard.

10. Audience demographics

Just like any marketing platform, understanding your audience demographics in virtual worlds is crucial for market segmentation, targeting and engagement. 

Diving deeper into your player demographics such as age, gender, income, and location will enable your brand to refine strategies to connect with specific audiences. Equally important is recognizing the devices your audience prefers when interacting with your gaming experience - mobile, desktop, or console. 

Most major virtual worlds, like Roblox and Minecraft, offer cross platform capabilities. This knowledge allows your brand to customize virtual experiences in a way that aligns with your primary audience segment’s preferred platforms. 

So, how do you access these gaming metrics? 

Now that you understand these key in-game metrics, you may be asking yourself how you access these statistics. Comprehensive gaming-specific data platforms like GEEIQ allow you to access your unique, private data to set and hit KPIs in virtual worlds. GEEIQ’s data analysis tools allow you to get insight into these key marketing metrics in a visually appealing and digestible format. 

Key takeaways 

For brands venturing into video games, it’s crucial to track the metrics that allow you to make  data-driven and gamer-centric decisions. Unprepared entries onto gaming platforms are likely to fail as they won’t necessarily focus on enriching the user experience and won’t be based on a deep understanding of gaming audiences. 

Marketing, brand and even innovation teams need the data to be able to boost engagement, attribute success and drive revenue within virtual worlds.

Brands must enter this space with clear intentions, setting precise goals and KPIs, shifting focus from traditional advertising methods to genuinely enhancing the virtual world for gamers.

As virtual and physical realities continue to merge, understanding these key metrics will enable brands to craft more engaging, relevant, and successful virtual brand activations and marketing campaigns. Help your brand get ahead of the curve by equipping them with the data they need to succeed. 

To find out how different industries are approaching gaming as a new marketing channel, download our latest report below.