Get a free advice now!

    Pick the topic

    Developer OutsourcingWeb developingApp developingDigital MarketingeCommerce systemseEntertainment systems

    Thank you for your message. It has been sent.

    Tags

    Google Analytics 4 vs Universal Analytics – what’s new?

    Google Analytics 4 vs Universal Analytics – what’s new?

    Introduction

    GA 4 is a browser-based tool created by Google to analyze and provide statistics on website traffic, quickly becoming one of the most important tools for Digital Marketing. The first version was launched in 2005 and has since been developed often under different names (causing some confusion) with new or different functionalities. GA 4 is the next iteration of the software and is considered an upgrade from the previous Universal Analytics, which had been widely used until late 2020, and many companies still use it this day. Fortunately, you can currently test GA4 without deleting the data from the previous iteration of the tool, which means that marketers do not lose valuable historical information. There are key differences between GA 4 and UA, and we outline some of them below.

    Google Analytics 4 – new features and changes in comparison to Universal Analytics

    The latest installment of GA is an important step forward in many ways. As the notes for the latest iteration take a lot of space, we will highlight just some of the new features.

    • An overhauled reporting menu

    The side menu itself has gone through some changes. It features a waterfall design with an additional sidebar and a big number of options. GA 4 gives users the ability to create customized reports to display only the information deemed most relevant. The reports are now grouped based on specific factors.

    • Events-based tracking

    This is probably the most fundamental change in GA4 compared to its predecessor. Contrary to the previous focus on page views for web versions of GA, in an effort to create a system that would cover both mobile and desktop, a complete transition to event-based tracking was made. Events have become a unifying, overarching concept. You can define those events on your own and add some extra information to them (a parameter) to make them more descriptive. Careful planning is the key to maximize the benefits of the tool.

    • Machine learning supporting custom insights

    The combination of machine learning and the ability to set custom conditions result in insights tailor-made for the user’s specific needs. Any major fluctuation in a trend that a user follows can be automatically reported through an email notification, increasing the chances of a timely reaction to an opportunity or problem. In September 2021, Google has also introduced attribution insights which are focused on showing conversion paths.

    • Native integration with BigQuery

    In a nutshell, BigQuery is a tool for analyzing huge chunks of data, which can be of great help to users who manage websites with a lot of traffic. The tool provides free access to raw, unsampled data. There was no free integration with BigQuery in Universal Analytics.

    • A new set of engagement metrics

    With Google Analytics 4, we get updated methods of measuring user engagement. Instead of page view metrics which we had in Universal Analytics, the section is now divided into 5 columns – New users, Engaged sessions, Engagement rate, Engaged sessions per user as well as Average engagement time, all of which help measure engagement more accurately.

    • A solution for spam

    Efforts have been made to make it much more difficult to send spam data to the new GA. The tool now requires that hits be equipped with a key available only to users with access to the analytics of a specific website.

    • Built-in and always on IP anonymization

    GA4 is more cautious with user data than UA. The software now features built-in, always on, IP anonymization that cannot be disabled. All in an effort to avoid problems with privacy regulations.

    • Improved integration with Google Ads

    Improving upon its predecessor, the software is now more tightly integrated with Google Ads, providing a way to organize customized audiences to maximize the benefit for your clients.

    • Easier debugging

    The reporting interface in Google Analytics 4 enables the user to validate the configuration of analytics through a debugView report.

    Conclusion

    Google maintains a steady stream of updates for GA4, either improving the tool or introducing new features once or twice per month. It’s safe to say there is a lot to look forward to and if you haven’t transitioned from Universal Analytics yet, it might be a good time. The customization-oriented approach alongside the support for both mobile and desktop make GA4 a flexible and future-proof solution that will serve experts for years to come.

    Comments
    0 response

    Add comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

    Popular news

    Digital marketing without third-party cookies – new rules
    • Technology
    • Trends

    Digital marketing without third-party cookies – new rules

    February 21, 2024 by createIT
    eCommerce healthcheck
    • Services
    • Trends

    eCommerce healthcheck

    January 24, 2024 by createIT
    Live Visitor Count in WooCommerce with SSE
    • Dev Tips and Tricks

    Live Visitor Count in WooCommerce with SSE

    December 12, 2023 by createIT
    Calculate shipping costs programmatically in WooCommerce
    • Dev Tips and Tricks

    Calculate shipping costs programmatically in WooCommerce

    December 11, 2023 by createIT
    Designing a cookie consent modal certified by TCF IAB
    • Dev Tips and Tricks

    Designing a cookie consent modal certified by TCF IAB

    December 7, 2023 by createIT
    Understanding the IAB’s Global Vendor List (GVL)
    • Dev Tips and Tricks

    Understanding the IAB’s Global Vendor List (GVL)

    December 6, 2023 by createIT
    Effortlessly transform JSON data into a clear schema
    • Uncategorized

    Effortlessly transform JSON data into a clear schema

    December 5, 2023 by createIT
    Anatomy of WordPress malware: a technical deep dive
    • Dev Tips and Tricks
    • Technology

    Anatomy of WordPress malware: a technical deep dive

    December 4, 2023 by createIT
    Initializing CMP with the Stub Script and cmpapi.js
    • Dev Tips and Tricks

    Initializing CMP with the Stub Script and cmpapi.js

    November 29, 2023 by createIT

    Technology
    Be on the same page as the rest of the industry.

    Contact us