Set up your GA4 before the end of June 2022 !

Google Universal Analytics features will stop working in July 2023. Although they will be available until then, they have become obsolete, according to Russell Ketchum (director & product management at Google). Find out more about the ins and outs of this change and about GA4 technology, the replacement for Google Universal Analytics.

Context of the change: why GA4 technology?

Universal Analytics was built for a generation of online measurement that was anchored in the desktop web, independent sessions and more easily observable data from cookies.”

“This measurement methodology is quickly becoming obsolete.”

Russell Ketchum, director, product management at Google

According to the product manager at Google, Google Universal Analytics (UA) is no longer relevant to current practices.

In fact, that’s why Google Analytics 4 (GA4) was officially launched on October 14, 2020. Unlike its predecessor, GA4 works across platforms and does not rely on cookies. This technology gains in accuracy regarding user behavior. In addition, GA4 does not store IP addresses, which helps brands stay in line with privacy regulations.

Who is concerned by this change ?

Everyone who uses Google Universal Analytics on a daily basis is affected, in one way or another, by this announcement. Indeed, from July 1st, 2023, this platform will definitely disappear. Thereafter, your data will be accessible for at least 6 months. But Google strongly recommends to all its users to export their data to avoid any bad surprise.

How do you check the type of property you own? Look at your ID!

The Google Universal Analytics property ID begins with “UA”, and ends with a number (UA-XXXXXXXXX-1). As for the Google Analytics 4 ID, it contains only numbers.

If you are already using a GA4 property, then this article does not concern you.

What happens after July 1, 2023?

After this deadline, Google Universal Analytics will be down, but you will still be able to access your data for a period of 6 months. But if you don’t upgrade in time (July 2023), you risk losing the tracking history. That is why Google highly recommend you to migrate your data to GA4 before July 2022. This way, you will have one year of history in July 2023 and can continue to compare your data with year N-1.

What’s new with GA4?

Its functionalities will allow you to better understand the users’ behaviors. In addition, GA4 will predict their future actions in order to improve the user experience. Major changes prepare you for what comes next.

Here are the other new features that GA4 offers:

  • A model based on users and events (to help you understand how users interact with your site or app) ;
  • Machine learning replaces cookies (to allow you to send ads to groups of customers instead of specific individuals);
  • Revenue prediction (within the next 28 days) ;
  • New layout (clearer and more detailed presentation).

What Maras IT will do for their clients?

Whether you are already using GA4 technology or not, you must have received an e-mail from us before the end of May concerning this change. At Maras IT, we will make sure that you are using Google Tag manager to handle Analytics Properties. And if you need to set up and configure GA4, we will send a budget request to implement what’s required.

Be reassured, we take care of the migration to GA4!

With this change, you will start collecting data on GA4 for N-1 data comparison starting July 2023.

Another benefit of migrating from Google Universal Analytics to GA4 before July 2022 is that you can get used to using this technology before the old one goes away.

Finally, Lastly, we recommend you to set up dual-tagging on your website and app to run GA4 alongside Universal Analytics. This way you will be able to use Google Analytics until GA4 is fully equipped with everything you need.

Need help setting up GA4? Contact us! We will make this change inherent to the hidden side of web development.


Sources

  • https://searchengineland.com/google-deprecate-universal-analytics-on-july-1-2023-382648#:~:text=GA4%20was%20released%20in%20October,and%20cross%2Ddevice%20measurement%20capabilities. (EN)
  • https://www.blogdumoderateur.com/google-analytics-proprietes-ua-cesser-fonctionner-juillet-2023/ (FR)
  • https://cxl.com/blog/google-analytics-4/ (EN)
  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QfUSKYJz5QE&list=WL&index=1&t=487s (EN)