Google Analytics (GA) is a powerful tool that allows companies to track website traffic and user behavior. With the coming shift from GA3 to GA4, there are some important implications that companies should be aware of. In this article, we will explore the differences between GA3 and GA4, the benefits of upgrading to GA4, and how to set up Google Analytics 4 for your website.
GA3 vs GA4
GA3, also known as Universal Analytics (UA), has been the go-to version of Google Analytics for over a decade. However, GA4 is a major upgrade that offers many new features and improvements over GA3. One of the most significant differences is the way that data is collected and organized.
GA3 uses a hierarchical structure with accounts, properties, and views, while GA4 enables for tracking across multiple devices to one property, using data streams. Another key difference between GA3 and GA4 is how data is collected and organized, with GA4 focusing on users and events, rather than GA3 which based data collection on sessions and hits. GA4 is also more prepared for a future without cookies, while GA3 was built at a time when cookies were prevalent, GA4 does not exclusively rely on cookies and has the capability to use advanced statistics, and machine learning to fill in data gaps where cookies are not an option.
What does that mean? Well, simply put, this means that GA4 can provide more accurate and reliable data, especially for users who access your website from multiple devices or locations. Make sure you have your GA4 correctly set up on your site – do our test here! It’s free!
Benefits of Upgrading to GA4
Upgrading to GA4 offers many benefits for companies, Here’s a short list you might want to consider:
- Better User Tracking: GA4 provides more accurate and detailed information about user behaviour, including cross-device and cross-platform tracking.
- More Flexibility: GA4 allows for more customization and flexibility in tracking events and conversions.
- Improved Data Privacy: GA4 is designed with user privacy in mind, with built-in features like data deletion and consent management.
- Machine Learning Capabilities: GA4 includes machine learning features that can help identify patterns and insights in your data.
How to setup GA4
Setting up Google Analytics 4 for your website is a straightforward process. Here are the basic steps:
- Create a GA4 Property: Log in to your Google Analytics account and create a new GA4 property.
- Add GA4 Tracking Code: Add the GA4 tracking code to your website. This can be done by modifying your website's code or using a tag manager like Google Tag Manager.
- Set Up Data Streams: Set up data streams for your website and any relevant mobile apps.
- Customize Settings: Customize your GA4 settings to match your business needs, including events, conversions, and audience definitions.
- Verify Tracking: Verify that your GA4 tracking is working correctly by testing and reviewing your data.
Upgrading to GA4 from GA3 offers many benefits for companies, including improved user tracking, flexibility, and data privacy. Setting up Google Analytics 4 for your website is a relatively simple process, and the benefits of upgrading are well worth the effort. As GA3 is eventually phased out, it's important for companies to make the switch to GA4 to stay up to date with the latest features and capabilities.
Is your website ready for GA4?
Don’t lose your edge in the GA game. Ensure your website's GA4 setup with our quick test. It is totally free – do the test here.