Google Universal Analytics Vs. GA4 – What is the difference?

If you have been using Google Analytics, you might be considering making the switch to Universal Analytics but aren’t sure which one to choose or why the changeover is necessary. Google Analytics and Universal Analytics are essentially the same services, but Universal Analytics gives you more flexibility and options for data collection. This guide will look at what exactly Universal Analytics does and how it can benefit you and your website going forward.

What Is Google Analytics 4?

A few months ago, Google released a new product called Google Analytics 4 (GA4), but the key differences between it and Universal Analytics have not been explained clearly. On October 14, 2020, Google Analytics 4 became the default Google Analytics property type. This property type can measure both website traffic and app usage.

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is now officially the preferred property type for Google Analytics. It was previously called App+Web Property before it first came out in beta. What is the reason for App+Web? The new application will be able to track each app and Web visit within one Google Analytics property instead of having the different platform visits split into separate GA properties. In the autumn of 2020, App+Web Property was rebranded as App+Web and released as Google Analytics 4 (GA4).

Google Analytics 4.0 release as a complete rewrite of Google’s free analytics software. It completely redesign to be more intuitive, easier to navigate, and look better than ever before. However, most notable of all is that Google took an entirely new approach with its data collection and reporting system: Universal Analytics. This post breaks down how it works and differs from Google’s previous incarnation of their software. Read on for a full breakdown!

Google Analytics 4 Benefits

You can see more of the user experience

Google Analytics has changed. It’s not just how it structures its reports in the user interface. It has changed its fundamentals. Does not emphasize steps that can easily dispersed by sessions, such as a platform or device. The focus is on the user and their recorded interactions.

Analytic tools are more focused on user interaction

Alongside being in a position to gather and aggregate more information, Google has made it easier for analysts and marketers to look into user-centric reports by aligning menus for reports with the user journey. Build more powerful audiences for your advertising campaigns GA4 equipped with stronger measurements and more powerful analytical tools and integrations. It means that GA4 will have a more influential audience that can use in marketing advertising campaigns. It leads to more ROI from advertising.

More advanced tracking and privacy features for users

Google Analytics 4 gives you and your customers more understanding and careful oversight of the personal data being collected and how it is used to help you adhere to the latest and future privacy regulations. For example, using GA4, you can now exclude certain events and user properties from the personalization of ads.

Simple Goals and Event setup

The term referred to as ‘Event Editing and Synthesis’ in the eyes of Google. It allows users to refine the goal tracking process and gather precise behavioural data, with no requirement to edit code or edit and optimize goals setup. What was once a complex task is now easy and will be especially helpful when transactional functions like checkout and application forms are located on a sub-domain or third-party website.

How To Use Google Analytics 4?

Create an account with Google Analytics 4

The first step is to create your account with a Google Analytics account. You can also sign in to your existing account.

Include the URL, name, and the industry of the site you’d like to track

Select the account you would like to include to add the Property. This step recommends creating a name for your property and adding a website URL along with the industry and reporting time zone. After that, you will be able to create and complete this phase of the process.

Include a view of your Property

Log in to the account and property to which you want to add views. Click the menu option to create a view, name your view, select the type you want to view (web or application), and then you’ll asked to answer additional questions. Keep in mind that it’s possible to add up to 25 views of your property within GA.

Include your tracking number directly after the tag of your website

When you create a property, you’ll have a unique tracking code and site tag that you need to place on all the web pages you want to measure. Then, add your global website tag after the opening tag on every website page you plan to use for measuring.

You’ll asked what kind of site you’re looking for (static or dynamic, web hosting, Google Tag Manager) to ensure that you establish the data collection precisely.

Go to your GA portal to verify that the code is functioning

Finally, verify your code is working. It can be done by reviewing your Reports in the Real-Time section when clicking on your website in a different tab or using your mobile. The report should contain at least one user who has visited your site!

Difference Between Google UA Vs GA4

1. Different Measuring Models

The main difference between Universal Analytics and GA4 is their model for measurements. Universal Analytics uses a model based on sessions and pageviews.

In general, a session is a period (it may last hours, days, or weeks) in which one user visits the site, such as thirty minutes. Sessions may contain one or more of the following: Pageviews, Events, or Ecommerce Transactions.

Contrastingly, Google Analytics 4 makes use of an event-oriented measurement model. The notion is that any interaction can be categorized as an event. As a result, all Analytics hit types translated to GA4 events.

What can be confusing is that in Universal Analytics (and all previous versions of GA), an event is of three parts: the category, the action, and the label. GA4 events do not have categories, actions, or labels. Every interaction can be an event, and an event doesn’t have to have parameters.

2. Elimination of the Monthly Hit Limits

A significant distinction between Universal Analytics and GA4 is eliminating the monthly hit limit. The monthly limit of the free version coming with Universal Analytics was 10m hits. He went.

However, GA4 limits the number of events that can be recorded (500). As of the time of writing, there is no limit on the amount of recorded data. It has led to some clients opting to use GA4 as the primary strategy for their analysis.

3. Free Connection to BigQuery

So the last thing I’m going to talk about is GA4’s free connection to BigQuery. Before this, this feature was only available to GA360 customers.

It might sound like gibberish to those unfamiliar with BigQuery. Still, if you have ever tried to build large and complicated segments in Google Analytics, you’ll know how badly sampling can disrupt your ability to get an insight into your data.

In other words, Big Query brings the data out of GA so you can interrogate it without sampling the data.

How to Upgrade To Google Analytics 4?

  1. Consider account structure
  2. Create a Google Analytics 4 property
  3. Create data stream(s)
  4. Enable data collection
  5. Activate Google Signals
  6. Link to Google Ads
  7. Map Universal Analytics custom events to Google Analytics 4
  8. Migrate Universal Analytics goals and conversions to Google Analytics 4
  9. Validate and bid to conversions in Google Ads
  10. Migrate audiences
  11. Migrate eCommerce measurement
  12. Add users