A Guide to Google Analytics 4 - GenY Medium

A Guide to Google Analytics 4

Introduction

Google announced recently that Universal Analytics will no longer be processing new data in June 2023. Here’s a complete guide to Google Analytics 4, should you wish to familiarize yourself with Google Analytics 4 and its new dashboard.

What is Google Analytics 4?

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is a brand new version of Google Analytics. This will allow marketers to analyze client usage metrics and not just track traffic. Google Analytics 4 tracks customer behavior across multiple platforms. It leverages AI to provide additional insights into how users interact with your website and apps. GA4 also focuses on customer privacy. This is in line with a variety of new privacy laws, such as GDPR and CCPA. GA4 provides unprecedented insights with its privacy-first tracking, cross channel knowledge measurement and AI-driven prophetic analysis.

Google Analytics 4 vs. Universal Analytics

Google Analytics 4 and Universal Analytics have one thing in common. They both allow you to report on the activity on all websites and applications. We will discuss the many differences between them.

Google Analytics 4 incorporates a New Dashboard

The primary change you can notice is the completely new dashboard. It’s very efficient, and many of the reports that you are used to are no longer there or moved. On the main navigation bar users will find new buttons such as home, reports, explore and advertising.

All Measurements are Events in GA4

Universal Analytics identified page views as the most important metric. Google Analytics 4 will allow you to see events and not generalized data. This will give you a better understanding of how users interact with your website and app. Session-level reports will still be available, but you can interrupt it by interaction. This allows for more in-depth reports.

GA4 has a variety of new metrics. These include engagement metrics like:

1. Engaged sessions
2. Engagement rate
3. Engagement time

It also tracks a variety of dimensions such as attribution, demographics and events.

Get Predictive Insights from Google Analytics 4

GA4’s steam-powered prophetic analytics will allow you to make data-driven decisions on a large scale. These AI metrics are:

1. Purchase likelihood
2. Probability of churn
3. Revenue prediction

These metrics can also improve website performance. You can create custom funnels to suit different audiences based on their needs and behaviors. As more data is collected, the suggestions can be improved.

GA4 offers Marketers More Personalisation Options

GA4 allows you to personalize the dashboard. This will allow you to see the most important reports for your business. Users can customize based on trigger events that have occurred on your website or application allowing you to track clients’ interactions in a precise manner .

You can create segments on conversion events that took place in a very specific area, for example. This makes it possible to get a better understanding of your users’ behavior and preferences.

Cross-Platform Tracking

Cross Platform Tracking is used when users are active on more than one platform which was impossible when using Universal Analytics. Google Analytics 4 tracks both web and app in one property, hence the beta name of Google Analytics + Web.

Cross-platform tracking allows you to visualize the client’s journey from acquisition through engagement and monetization. GA4 will allow you to track the user experience, from start to finish, and from one platform to another.
This is often accomplished by using unique user IDs that are assigned to each app or website login.

The acceptable gtag.js code sends the user ID from each session to Google Analytics. It can be sent either from the web site or through the appliance. The GA4 property will determine the ID and all user metrics will be logged. Once the user logs in “again” or “once more often” on another platform, reports can link the user’s data with their unique ID and allow the user to develop from where it left off.

This is often a very useful data source for marketers, as it allows you to better understand the cross-platform expertise and preferences of your users. The data can be used to extrapolate information from a generalized demographic to build better client models.

Set Up Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 can now be accessed via your website or application. It has two options for the setup.

Add it to an Existing Property

If you currently have a Universal Analytics property for your website, then you can set up a Google Analytics 4 property by clicking on “Admin” on the lower left of the screen.

Choose the relevant account in the column: Account.

1. In the Property column, select the Universal Analytics property that currently collects data for your website.
2. Choose GA4 Setup Assistant, in the column titled: Property.
3. Click on Google Analytics 4 – Setup Assistant.
4. Get started by opting to “create a new Google Analytics 4 property.”

Google Analytics for Firebase

Follow these steps to upgrade your Firebase account to GA4:

1. Log in to the Firebase console.
2. Go to Analytics > Dashboard on the left panel.
3. Then, choose “Begin upgrade”, option in the banner.
4. Finish the upgrade with the help of on-screen instructions.

Once complete, you can start using app analytics in both the Firebase console and Google Analytics.

How do I learn Google Analytics 4?

Follow these steps to get started which will help you to understand the basics and navigate the new platform.

  • The New Search Bar

GA4’s search bar gives you a lot more options than before. You can see insights, specific reports, property configurations as well as instant answers to specific queries like “how many users this year compared to last year?”.

  • Learn More about the New Dashboard

It may seem familiar at first glance but if you take a closer look many of the reports you are used to seeing are no longer there in the new dashboard.

Here is an annotated version. The navigation bar and the various displays have been labeled. This walk-through is using GA’s demo account. It may look different from yours, especially if it’s already been customized.

  • Explore the Reports Dashboard

Click on the second icon in the left navigation bar that looks like a graph You will be taken to the reports dashboard. This displays snapshots of various reports. These tabs will have most of the reports but they will look a little different from old Google Analytics reports.

There is a lot of data in this section as different websites track different metrics. For example, if you want to know how many people visited a particular page go to “engagement” and click on the “Views by Page Title and Screen Class” chart.

Here you can also see user demographics, monetization and acquisition.

  • See Suggested Audiences

Google Analytics 4 now suggests new audience members, this information can be used to find new audiences which will be a good fit for your business that can be viewed under the section Audiences.

Conclusion

Google Analytics 4 provides users with valuable insights into your audience including cross-platform tracking and more control over data. You can also get AI-driven insights. It is very simple to set up a GA4 property via your app or website. The setup does not take a lot of time so we suggest not to delay the transition any longer.

December 13, 2022
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