What is Google Analytics 4 and Why You Should Update Now

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the latest iteration of Google’s popular web analytics tool. With a focus on machine learning and event-based tracking, GA4 is set to revolutionize the way businesses gather and interpret data about their online presence. However, any business that uses Google Analytics to measure their digital performance should be aware of what they’re in for when it comes to migrating to the new platform.

A Smarter, Sleeker Analytics Platform

One of the key features of GA4 is its use of machine learning to identify patterns and trends in website and app data. Rather than relying on a session-based model, GA4 utilizes event and user-based models to provide insights that are more intuitive and flexible. This means that businesses can get a more detailed and accurate picture of how their online presence is being used and interacted with.

In addition to its machine learning capabilities, GA4 is also more flexible and can integrate with a wider range of tools. This will make it easier for businesses to get the full picture’s worth of the data they need and to analyze it in a way that is most meaningful to them.

Another major advantage of GA4 is its advanced security features. With data protection regulations becoming increasingly stringent, businesses need to ensure that their data is safe and secure. GA4’s security measures help businesses to comply with these regulations, giving them peace of mind that their data is safe.

Switch Now to Keep Insights Coming

While even Universal Analytics wasn’t a ‘plug and play’ platform, users need to be aware that migrating to GA4 will require technical expertise because the transition isn’t simple process. Some challenges to prepare for below:

Loss of Historical Data

After July 2023, tracking in Universal Analytics will stop which means that you will have already needed to have migrated to GA4 to continue collecting data. The earlier you make the switch, the better – when the time comes that you need it, you’ll be glad to have a few months of data to compare on the new platform.

To avoid data loss and continue to identify trends in their insights, businesses need to migrate to GA4 now. They also need to be aware, though, that it’ll require businesses to “re-learn” how to understand GA reports – and update their own reporting processes internally – which may be different from those of previous versions of Google Analytics. With a focus on user-based models and a shift in how this valuable data is presented in GA4, analysts and other marketers will need to factor in time for a learning curve while they grasp how to use the new Google Analytics platform and interpret the data.

Tracking Basic Website Interactions and Conversions Isn’t Simple

If you’d like insight on specific calls to actions (CTAs) that are being clicked or how your target audience navigates through your marketing campaigns, you’ll need to be comfortable with adjusting your website’s code. The basic tracking GA4 provides is not enough to make decisions on how to optimize your website.

Despite this potentially bumpy transition process, the long-term benefits of GA4 are likely to outweigh any short-term disruption, making it well worth the effort for businesses and agencies alike.

Core Can Help You Migrate to GA4

It’s easy to be intimidated by the adoption of Google Analytics 4 – there’s a complex migration and set-up process, and you’ll want to familiarize yourself with the new platform layout to ensure you’re pulling the right insights from the data.

No need to worry though – Core is here to help with all of that. Our expert Analytics team can guide you through the process or make the move to GA4 for you. Reach out to Core now and one of our Analysts will be happy to help!

Ben Molfetta
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