What You Need to Know About GA4
Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the newest version of Google’s analytics service.
First announced back in 2020, it had relatively low traction as many businesses already had efficient and reliable analytics systems in place. That changed recently, with Google confirming the previous version (Google Universal Analytics) phasing out on 01 July 2023.
Understanding Google Analytics 4
- What is GA4?
- What are events in GA4?
- Does my website need GA4?
- When should I start using GA4?
- Will GA4 carry my Universal Analytics data across?
- How much does GA4 cost?
- How can I start using GA4?
As a business owner, you need to know what GA4 has to offer. Read on to learn what you can expect in the latest version of Google Analytics and why you should consider getting it setup in your account.
What is GA4?
Google Analytics 4 is a digital analytics tool by Google to track activity and performance across your website and mobile apps. Currently in its fourth version, it will be replacing Google Universal Analytics (UA) completely come July 2023.
By providing cross-channel data in one platform, GA4 gives a broader, more accurate picture of user activity across your digital business.
What are events in GA4?
Instead of limiting businesses to only tracking predefined options, GA4 allows you to track anything you want. These data are known as “events” and replaces the terminology used previously in UA.
You can still collect the same types of data as those in UA (such as pageview hits, social interaction hits, ecommerce hits, etc.), but more importantly, you can now be able to customise the types of data you want to collect on GA4.
This allows for a more tailored approach to how you measure your business performance.
Does my website need GA4?
If you have been using UA for digital marketing reporting, you will need to switch to GA4 next year. For now, you can continue using UA for reporting purposes until 01 July 2023 when UA will stop counting new hits.
If you are after a performance reporting tool that incorporates both website and app analysis, GA4 is an accessible, reliable and easy-to-use platform for both established global brands and small local businesses.
When should I start using GA4?
The short answer is: now. There are two reasons why you should get GA4 setup as soon as possible.
Even if you are not keen to switch to GA4 for reporting your website performance right now, setting up GA4 and testing it now will ensure your data analysis is accurate once you are ready to use GA4.
If you were not previously using Google Analytics for tracking, you may not be able to carry over your existing data to GA4. As such, another major reason to setup GA4 now is to allow GA4 to begin collecting data, ensuring you have sufficient historical data for the analytics to tell a more accurate story.
Will GA4 carry my Universal Analytics data across?
No, GA4 only records data going forward. So, if you were to migrate data only on 31 June 2023, you will only see your website or apps statistics from that day forward.
When Google Universal Analytics is phased out on 01 July 2023, all your historical data will be lost. Therefore, it is important to create a GA4 account now. This will give you over 12 months of analytical statistics relating to your website or app.
How much does GA4 cost?
Nothing! There is no cost in using GA4 so take advantage of it for your business web and app performance analysis today.
How can I start using GA4?
If you are already a Digital Marketing customer of Webcentral, good news! You need not do anything at this point.
Our team has already begun creating your GA4 property and testing new tags to begin performance tracking in GA4. We will discuss with you and map out what data is important to your business. This can include phone number clicks, registrations, sales, downloads etc.
The future of web reporting & analytics
All other businesses:
If you are not a Digital Marketing customer of Webcentral, you can create your GA4 property and tags in Google Analytics to start tracking your desired events.
Or, you can leave it to the digital marketing experts. Get in touch with our digital consultants today to futureproof your online business with GA4.
Call 1300 638 734 today.