Google Analytics 4
What do you need to know about Google Analytics 4?
In late 2019, Google launched its most recent version of Google Analytics – Google Analytics 4. Since October 2020, Google Analytics 4 has been the default platform for all new Google Analytics accounts. However, it has still been possible to use Universal Analytics – the previous generation of Google Analytics.
An important announcement.
In mid-March 2022, Google announced it would switch off data collection for Universal Analytics properties on 1st July 2023.
“Data collection for Universal Analytics 360 properties will end three months later, on 1st October 2023.“
While that may seem like a distant target, we recommend you switch to Google Analytics 4 immediately if you haven’t already done so.
If you’re a Brainycloud client, we’ll be in touch to implement Google Analytics 4 for you at no cost!
Why do I need to change now if Universal Analytics will run until July 2023?
The main reason you should act now is that your Google Analytics data won’t automatically populate into Google Analytics 4 if you’re not signed up and using it.
So, say you waited until June 2023 to activate Google Analytics 4. In this scenario, you wouldn’t have access to your data from 2022. So you’d be unable to complete accurate year-on-year data analysis and comparison. Not having this data will subsequently affect your decision-making ability across all your digital marketing channels.
As is always the case, the more data you have, the better your analysis will be. In the case of Google Analytics 4, the more historical data you have, the better placed you will be to take advantage of all the platform’s features. Furthermore, you’ll steal a march on any straggling industry competitors who might not be using it.
Additional benefits and features in Google Analytics 4
While maintaining data availability and integrity is the most significant practical reason for making an immediate change to Google Analytics 4, the new generation platform also has a wide range of additional benefits and features that will help you enhance your marketing.
Fuller insights into how customers interact with your brand across multiple touchpoints.
Google Analytics 4 will provide you with a complete view of your customer lifecycle via events-based measurements. This means you can see data for specific customers in a single place without needing to slice and dice data from multiple platforms yourself.
As well as making data analysis more manageable and efficient from your side, this level of insight will help you reduce user drop-offs, optimize your sales funnels and user journeys, and enhance your internal click-through rate.
How many tools do you currently need to use to do all that?!
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Enhanced data-driven attribution
In addition to the customer interaction insights, in Google Analytics 4, you’ll also be able to see how your marketing efforts across multiple channels influence the customer journey. This feature will be vital in optimizing return on investment. For example, you’ll be able to view which marketing campaigns push people towards buying quicker and analyze if you have any campaigns that push people away or create friction within your funnel.
Best of all, you and your teams can export this data to Google Ads and the Google Marketing Platform so you can work on and optimize campaigns based on accurate data.
Tailored data collection for meeting data privacy regulations
Data privacy laws worldwide have undergone a revolution in the last few years. While cookies and metadata collection are relatively unintrusive, it’s still easy to fall foul of data privacy rules, especially if your business targets multiple geographies.
Google Analytics 4 solves this problem by introducing country-level privacy controls, minimizing data collection where necessary but maintaining measurement functionality and providing vital insights about user behavior.
Machine learning insights
Google Analytics 4 includes a machine learning feature that provides predictive insights around how users interact with your website. This feature will also create audiences within your Analytics views, showing you common characteristics and behaviors of people likely to buy or exit without making a purchase or inquiry.
Best of all, it’ll generate all the insights you need to take action and turn the leavers into buyers and the first-time buyers into returning ones!
Expanded integrations with other Google tools
Modern tech and apps rely heavily on integrations to deliver maximum value to users, and Google Analytics 4 is no different.
Search Ads 360 and Display & Video 360 integrations will be available for all Google Analytics 4 users. So you’ll have your broadest ever view of your marketing activities and performance in one place!
Better serving enterprise needs
If you’re an enterprise business using Analytics 360, Google Analytics 4 comes with new properties that allow you to provide the appropriate levels of data access to the necessary stakeholders while maintaining data integrity and privacy and your own internal data management policies.
All this adds up to better insights and the ability to make more precise data-driven decisions within a robust governance framework.
Install Google Analytics 4 now
You can read Google’s walkthrough for installing Google Analytics 4 at https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/9744165?hl=en.
Remember, if you’re a BrainyCloud client, you don’t need to do anything! We’ll take care of this for you.
If you’re not currently working with a digital marketing agency and want to ensure you implement Google Analytics 4 correctly, contact us here to discuss your support needs.