Everything You Need to Know About Google Analytics 4

by Elizabeth Chen 6 March 2023

Google announced that Universal Analytics will be deprecated on 1st July 2023 and Google Analytics 4 (GA4) will take over as Google’s main analytics platform. 

  • Until 1st July 2023, you are still able to use and collect new traffic data in your existing Universal Analytics property.
  • After July 1st, 2023, Universal Analytics will stop processing new data. You can access historical data in your Universal Analytics property for six months. 

Don’t risk losing all your data and important customer insights. Now is the time to move to GA4 and future-proof your digital analytics.

What is GA4?

Google Analytics 4 is the most recent release of Google Analytics, or as Google describes it – “a new property designed for the future of measurement”. 

GA4 is not merely a platform update, it represents the next generation of analytics. It is a powerful tool built to track today’s users with changing behaviours and better focus on customer privacy. GA4 offers privacy-first tracking, AI-driven predictive analytics, and cross-channel data measurement.

What will happen if you don’t make the change? 

If you want to use Google Analytics for your business, making to move to GA4 is not really a choice. As mentioned above, Universal Analytics will stop tracking and producing any data in July 2023. 

Not having GA4 set up means you’ll lose all your data: 

  • Website traffic data 
  • Conversion data 
  • Engagement data
  • Audience data 

So the more important question is, when should you make the change?

Short answer is: right now! 

The earlier you set up GA4, the more historical data you have, and the more time you’ll have to get familiarised with the new platform. 

Remember, GA4 will not import any previous data from Universal Analytics, and will only collect data from the time you set up your GA4 property. 

So, even if you don’t plan on making the switch straight away, it’s best to have GA4 set up and start collecting historical data and tracking metrics relevant to your business. This means you’ll have continuity in your data, and be able to make year-on-year comparisons. 

The benefits of GA4

Still need more convincing? GA4 is the next generation of Analytics which collects data from both websites and apps. It is designed to help businesses better understand complex and multi-platform customer journeys. 

Here are 6 key benefits of GA4 you need to know: 

Free web analytics tool

Just like Universal Analytics and the predecessors of the Google Analytics product line, GA4 is completely free. It is the perfect tool for small businesses and e-commerce owners who do not have the budget for enterprise-level analytics software. 

See our guide on GA4 for e-commerce here. 

Event-based data model 

Universal Analytics has a session-based data model and relied on tracking different hit types. However, GA4, uses a more flexible and accurate event-based data model. Instead of relying on pageviews, GA4 tracks user interactions – or events – as they happen This also allows for cross-platform and cross-device analysis. 

Predictive metrics 

GA4 comes with AI-powered insights and predictions to help predict the future behaviour of your users. Just by collecting event data, you’ll be able to learn more about your users. 

The predictive metrics include: purchase probability, churn probability and predictive revenue. These metrics will help you make data-driven decisions and better understand your audience.

Customer lifecycle-framed reporting 

GA4 has simplified the reporting interface and organised around customer lifecycle stages: Acquisition, Retention, Engagement, and Monetisation. GA4 also has an improved reporting interface which allows you to customise dashboards and reports that suit your needs. 

Simplified tracking for common events

Previously teams needed to be skilled in navigating both Google Tag Manager and Google Analytics to ensure all important events were being tracked. Now, GA4 automatically collects some of your most commonly seen website events without additional setups, such as video progress, view search results, when a webpage is first opened via a dynamic link and more. 

Privacy by design

GA4 prioritises user privacy and is designed to help you comply to data compliance regulations – it is built for the cookieless future.

GA4 uses privacy-first tracking, meaning users’ privacy is more protected. For example, GA4 does not store third-party cookies or log IP addresses so you can’t connect an IP address with a specific user.  

Learn more about the difference between GA4 and Universal Analytics. 

Our solutions 

At Rumblr, we can help you and your team safely migrate from Universal Analytics or implement GA4 to ensure you begin collecting data as soon as possible. 

  • Audit of existing tracking and reporting 
  • Create GA4 properties 
  • Google Tag Manager set up 
  • Events tracking set up 
  • Goal & conversions set up 
  • Cross-platform integration 
  • Custom GA4 reporting 
  • Custom audience set-up 
  • Data continuity planning 
  • GA4 Migration Support

Get started with GA4 today.  Get in touch and let’s talk about how Rumblr can help your business with GA4. 

by Elizabeth Chen