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google analytics 4

Google recently announced a new update of Universal Analytics. Using Google Analytics to track marketing and business growth has become non-negotiable if you want to get deep insights into your customer’s buying behavior.

No matter how many benefits come along with Google Analytics, when it comes to shifting to a new update, it always looks more complicated. This happens because marketers get familiar with the existing version and new updates bring vague thoughts to mind.

Undoubtedly, switching to Google Analytics 4 is beneficial for beginners and advanced marketers because it offers a custom approach to collecting more data. This simply means you can effortlessly track data that matters for your business growth.

Let’s get into the nitty gritty of this recent update and understand Google Analytics 4, its new features, and how to set it up.

What is Google Analytics 4? 

Google Analytics is a data analysis tool that helps track traffic, check audience behavior and measure the site’s performance. According to a recent Google announcement, from July 1, 2023, Google Analytics 3, also known as Universal Analytics will stop processing business data.

Hence, it would be advisable to shift from Google Analytics 3 to Google Analytics 4. Google Analytics 4 allows business marketers to analyze critical customer metrics across multiple platforms. Moreover, you can leverage machine learning and the power of Artificial Intelligence to gain in-depth insight into how your audience interacts with your application and website.

It’s a new generation website analytics tool that helps track data and adheres to customer privacy. It also enables business website owners to monitor their journey across apps and sites. You need to switch to Google Analytics 4 to continue tracking and measuring site performance. Let’s closely look at the exclusive features of Google Analytics 4.

Key Features of Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 helps meet business goals such as increasing sales, generating leads, and app installation. 

  • AI-Powered Prediction and Data Insight 

Google Analytics 4 is helpful for businesses to plan marketing campaign strategies in efficient ways. It comes with exclusive features of AI-powered insight, which allow you to understand recent trends, such as audience interest in particular products. Moreover, machine learning technology helps predict sales outcomes and churns out relevant information. Business professionals and marketers can also use this data to target the right audience and their desired products. 

  • New Data Model

Google Analytics 4 provides a whole new way of data collection. It has a session-based data collection model that collects valuable data as it hits these sessions. The information may cover page hits and other event hits. Google Analytics 4 benefits business marketers by gathering all data in event forms. Besides this, it has several additional parameters such as transactions, page views, social interactions, and many more. Therefore, companies can gather incredible metrics without harming privacy. 

  • Complete Analysis of Customer Lifecycle

Customer lifecycle-framed reporting is another crucial feature of Google Analytics. Now, business marketers can organize customer journey reports using Google Analytics in marketing. For instance, you can easily see from which platforms customers are driving on your site, for how long they retain on the page, and what action they take for better engagement. Thus, you’ll have complete information about how users are engaging on your website across different channels and devices. 

  • Better Control Over User Data

As you may already know, Google is phasing out third-party cookies, and the digital world is moving towards a cookie-less future; data analytical tools are now emphasizing first-party data. That’s why Google Analytics 4 tools now feature granular data controls, specially designed for advertisers that comply with data regulations such as General Data Protection Regulation and California Consumer Privacy Act. These new granular data controls help business owners to get consent for ads and analytics. Moreover, it allows for handling data removal requests easily. 

  • Spam Protection 

You are probably familiar with spam prevention referrals using Google Analytics. Sometimes, you get a traffic spike or receive massive visitors from doubtful resources. This spamming traffic can disrupt your campaign strategies and further complicate data collection accurately. Fortunately, with the use of Google Analytics in marketing, you can quickly figure out this traffic problem. Earlier, spammers could send a fake request for data to Google Analytics 3 account using “Measurement Protocol,” but now, only hits will be sent with the secret key to the Google Analytics 4 property tools. Users can access this key only from Google Analytics 4 data streaming settings. 

  • Cross Platform Tracking 

What if your users are active on multiple online platforms? When users are using multiple platforms, tracking data was nearly impossible with the older Google Analytics tool. However, with Google Analytics 4 tools, tracking data from app data and websites has become easier. Tracking can be done with one single property, “Cross-Platform Tracking.” This feature lets businesses and marketers track customers’ journeys, including engagement, acquisition, retention, and monetization. Moreover, you can also use the tool to track customers’ experiences from start to end, and from a different platform.

The full cross-platform tracking can be done through user ID, which is assigned during website login and app login. Also, the user ID for every logged-in visit will be delivered from the web or the applications to Google Analytics with a proper gtag.js script. Any user metrics will be recorded, and the ID will be transmitted to the Google Analytics 4 property. The reports will link the user’s data to their unique ID and continue where they left off when the user checks in on a different platform. The information can be helpful for business marketers because it allows them to understand the customer’s behavior and experience.

Do You Need to Upgrade to Google Analytics 4? 

Of course, yes. Google Analytics 3 tools will not process data from July 1, 2023. Hence, if you want to track the performance of your customers, you need to upgrade to Google Analytics 4. It would be great if you upgrade as soon as possible because early upgrading will help you get familiar with the incredible features of Google Analytics 4 and its interface.

In addition to this, it also prioritizes customers’ privacy and offers better user control. Moreover, it doesn’t store your IP address and allows you to abide by International Data Protection Regulations. You can also add Google analytics 4 to the existing Universal Analytics account. By using Google Analytics in marketing, you can easily leverage all the analytical tools to collect data and gain better customer insight. The tool helps gain insight into customer purchasing habits and collects vital information about the key interests of the audience. Based on the data, users can easily make their marketing strategies to attract the target audience.

How to Set Up Google Analytics 4?

Configuration of Google Analytics 4 is pretty easy, and anyone can do it in just a few clicks. However, the analytical properties remain unchanged while upgrading, and you’ll continue collecting data. Your Universal Analytics view will be accessible through the admin screen.

Here’s how to set up Google Analytics 4 data streaming to your existing Universal Analytics account-

  • Log in to your Google Analytics account.
  • Click on “Admin” on the bottom left of the navigation corner.
  • Go to the property column and select your desired account.
  • Select the Universal Analytics property you need to collect data for your business website.
  • Now click on the Google Analytics 4 setup assistant given in the property column.
  • Now, in Setup Wizard, click on the large blue button.
  • Create property under the section “I want to create new Google Analytics 4 Property.”
  • Click to create new Google Analytics 4 Property.

Note:- The Google Analytics 4 setup assistant is working automatically with gtag.js. Hence, if you’re using any website builder like Wix and WordPress, you may need to add Google Analytics tags by yourself. Alternatively, you can choose the “enable data collection by using existing Google Analytics 3 tags.”

However, if you are still unable to do so, there are three possible reasons-

  • You are using Google Tag Manager.
  • Your Website Builder or CMS doesn’t support the updated gtag.js tags.
  • Your business website might be tagged with other analytics.js.

In all these cases, you have to add the tags by yourself.

Event Tracking 

Once you’ve created the property, the Google Analytics 4 setup assistant will automatically activate the “enhanced measurement” within the Google Analytics 4 property. However, customized code is still needed for form submission and tracking third-party elements. But most of the forms related to event tracking are automated and ready to go.

How Does Google Analytics 4 Help With Data Reporting? 

With the emphasis on user privacy, it’s getting harder to follow consumers as they move between numerous platforms and devices. Google Analytics 4 is a cutting-edge solution that uses improved machine learning methods to assist in closing the gap left by the absence of data; establishing a single user experience for all data associated with a single identity.

Finally, Google Analytics 4 has made it much simpler for marketers to identify meaningful patterns and data abnormalities by streamlining the reporting interface. In a nutshell, Google Analytics 4 employs overview reports rather than a huge number of preconfigured reports that attempt to cover every use case.

Bottom Line 

Now you have all the vital information about Google Analytics 4 update and why you need to replace the existing Google Analytics 3 tool before July 2023. This new version of Google Analytics for marketers comes with powerful features that are helpful for business owners and marketers to create compelling campaign strategies while keeping a tab on user privacy.

Are you ready to use Google Analytics 4?

Google Analytics 4 also introduces AI-powered insight, which helps reinvent your marketing and campaign strategies for your target audience in a better way. Hence, with the use of Google Analytics in marketing, you can accomplish your sales goals faster.

If you are still unsure about how the recent update of Google Analytics will benefit your business, connect with us and let’s discuss the endless possibilities of business expansion that follow when you work with us.