As of October 2020, Universal Analytics successor Google Analytics 4 is officially no longer in beta. The tool is designed to deliver better ROI for websites, apps, and other marketing efforts. We’ll give you an overview of what’s new in GA4 and highlight what to consider when upgrading.
GA4 offers optimized tools from Universal Analytics and many other new functions. The upgrade features a stronger focus on economic factors in the marketing field and includes app tracking as well. In addition, the new analysis options provide a more realistic picture of the target group and its behavior, which means forecasts are more accurate than ever. Other advantages to the upgrade include a more intuitive, user-friendly admin and simpler code implementation.
GA4 features at a glance:
- Analysis: More comprehensive options for understanding target groups, through app tracking (Firebase) and more
- Radar: Automatic, as well as user-defined trend detection with the exclusion of bot traffic for more accurate data
- Reports: Clear presentation of all your website’s key metrics – in real time and as history – and easy comparisons
- Integrations: Easier integration of functions and tools, such as URL creation, Google Ads or BigQuery
- Updates: GA4 is constantly being expanded and improved
- Usability: An intuitive design and user-friendliness simplify the analysis of your websites and apps
No more updates will appear for Universal Analytics, so in order to stay up to date with the latest technology going forward, GA4 is indispensable. By converting early, you won’t run into issues when Universal Analytics is phased out, after which data cannot be transferred to GA4. In addition, GA4 collects some data differently, such as session length.
While the advantages of transitioning are clear, switching to Google Analytics 4 can be time-consuming, both in terms of IT and marketing. We therefore recommend using Universal Analytics and Google Analytics 4 in parallel as you transition. Parallel use ensures that no data is lost, analysing new values is easier, and you can directly compare the data from UA and GA4.
The changes in GA4 do not only affect users. Many Universal Analytics tools have been redefined and often include new or enhanced features. This both facilitates the intuitive collection of data in the website view, and reduces the effort required to adapt the source code after updates.
Upgrading to Google Analytics 4 is a matter of just a few steps. However, successful use requires extensive technical know-how and precise planning.
Rather than simply adopting the same settings used in Universal Analytics, you should familiarize yourself with GA4’s new functions, carefully considering which ones make the most sense for your website. Are there outdated features that you can remove from your code? After all, less is often more. Also, take a look at the new analytics tools. What analytics and predictions are relevant to you? Next choose what you want GA4 to capture. Once you have decided, you can start upgrading to Google Analytics 4.
Familiarity with Universal Analytics does not mean that switching to GA4 is just a click of a button. To ensure you get the most of the new functions, we are happy to support you with IT and strategy during the upgrade or advise you on how to use the two versions in parallel. Enter a new era of data analysis with Google Analytics 4.
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