Google Analytics 4: Don’t Miss The Incoming Deadline!

Google Analytics 4: Don’t Miss The Incoming Deadline!

Google has announced that it will be sunsetting Universal Google Analytics from July 2023. If you’ve been postponing the switch to Google Analytics 4 (GA4), you are running out of time. GA4 is the future of Google Analytics, and as such, businesses that migrate to GA4 will be future-proofing their analytics capabilities. Anyone who does not transition to GA4 will ultimately lose data.  

Although many marketers and business owners are frustrated by this change, GA4 has many added benefits. Essentially, you will be able to have more control over what you track instead of what Google believes is important to your business.  



What is Google Analytics 4?  

Google Analytics 4 is the newest version of Google Analytics. With this brand-new generation of web analytics, marketers and business owners will be able to analyse important client metrics rather than just traffic. GA4 uses artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to deliver in-depth insights into how customers engage with your website and app while tracking the complete customer journey across various platforms.  

GA4 focuses on customer privacy as well. With recent privacy laws, including GDPR and CCPA, GA4 is a cutting-edge technology that offers unmatched insights thanks to privacy-first tracking, cross-channel data measurement, and AI-driven predictive analytics. 

How to set up Google Analytics 4 

The GA4 Setup Assistant can be used to set up a Google Analytics 4 property if your website already has a Universal Analytics property. You must have the Editor role for the account to use the GA4 Setup Assistance. To create your GA4 property, follow the directions below. 

1. In Google Analytics, select “Admin” on the lower left-hand side of the screen.  

2. In the Account column, choose the desired account.  

3. In the Property column, choose the Universal Analytics property that collects data from your website currently.  

4. In the Property column, choose GA4 Setup Assistant.  

5. Click “Get Started” under “I want to create a new Google Analytics 4 property.” 

6. If your website uses the gtag.js tag, you can choose “Enable data collection using your existing tags”. Finally, click “Create property”. 

Benefits of Google Analytics 4 

  • Improved user privacy: GA4 is designed with privacy in mind and includes new features like Consent Mode, which allows users to control their data privacy settings. This is especially crucial given the growing emphasis on data privacy and laws like the GDPR. 

  • Improved Data Collection: Better data collecting features in GA4 enable businesses to gather more thorough information about user behaviour across various platforms and devices. This is important as users interact with businesses across multiple channels and touchpoints. 

  • Better data insights: More data analysis and visualisation tools are available in GA4, enabling businesses to derive greater insights from their data. This includes machine learning models that can help identify trends and patterns in data, making it easier to make informed decisions.  

  • Enhanced integration with Google Ads and Google Cloud: Due to GA4's integration with Google Ads and Google Cloud, businesses can better track and analyse their advertising efforts. 

Tips for using Google Analytics 4 

  • Set up conversion tracking: Set up conversion tracking in GA4 to learn more about the effectiveness of your website and pinpoint areas for improvement. By doing this, you can keep track of user behaviours on your websites, including form submissions or product purchases.  

  • Use the exploration reports: You can analyse data using a range of metrics, dimensions, and filters utilising the exploration reports in GA4. Use these reports to learn more about user behaviour and spot patterns and trends in your data. 

  • Create custom metrics and dimensions: You can design unique metrics and dimensions in GA4 to suit your business requirements. For example, if you would like to better understand your data and track key performance indicators (KPIs) and dimensions specific to your company, use this function. 

  • Use machine learning insights: Advanced machine learning capabilities in GA4 allow you to analyse trends and insights in your data. These can help you optimise your website for user experience and increase revenue.  

  • Utilise the data streams feature: If you would like to get a more thorough understanding of user behaviour across various channels, you should use the data streams feature. You can track data from various sources, such as websites and apps, in one property using data streams. 

  • Set up audience tracking: To better understand your target audience and maximise your marketing efforts, use audience tracking in GA4. You can monitor user behaviour based on details such as age, gender, or geography. 

Overall thoughts 

GA4 offers many advantages, such as cross-platform tracking, increased data control, and AI-driven insights. Luckily, creating a GA4 property on your website or application is simple and easy to do. There is no reason to delay this effort as setting up GA4 should take you less than 10 minutes to complete. Having said that, you may still have many questions regarding GA4 and how to optimise it for your business. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to our Digital Consulting team at BDO. 

Declan Kelly, Digital Director


Author: Alexia Pringiers