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Google Analytics deadline day is almost here

Digital clock
Technology, Media & Telecomms
Digital and Insight

It may not come with the drama of a transfer deadline day, but the big cut-off date for migrating data to the new Google Analytics 4 — July 1st 2023 — is fast approaching. After this, you won’t be able to migrate historical data and your old analytics will stop measuring website visits. And you don’t want to be worrying about goals after the window closes. 

Now is your chance to make changes and improve performance. 

What’s this all about? 

If you work in digital, marketing or IT, you’ll probably be aware of the drawn-out transition from Google’s Universal Analytics (UA) to the new and improved Google Analytics 4 (GA4), which was first announced way back in October 2022. For business leaders and other teams, it’s worth checking to make sure this hasn’t been forgotten – and talk to us if you’d like more information. 

Google Analytics is an integral tool for any business with a website or app, used for the simplest of metrics such as page views and sources, through to complex goals and measuring ROI or monetisation of digital marketing. UA has been a stalwart in digital measurement for over a decade and will be remembered fondly for its bounce rates and its source/mediums. But while we thank UA for its loyal service, attentions turn to its bigger and more streamlined successor. 

So, what’s next? 

Overall, GA4 can provide a more holistic, omnichannel view of a brand’s online audience and activity across platforms, which is a significant improvement to previously having to view website, app and other platform activity separately. 

Privacy is another element that Google has taken seriously in the update. Among other things, differential privacy and anonymous IDs help protect user data whilst still identifying patterns and trends. 

Some of the new and improved features include automatic ‘event’ tracking (instead of custom metrics and dimensions) and the fact that these are tracked at the user level, giving you a clearer picture of experiences and not just conversions. 

What about AI? 

While AI chat platforms have stolen the spotlight over the past few months, it’s worth remembering that GA4 and many other digital platforms use AI cleverly, too. A few new features in GA4, including Predictive Metrics and Predictive Audiences, use AI to predict future behaviour of users and provide a likelihood of a user to hit a specific goal or conversion event. This can be very useful for testing different tactics and content. Automated insights, another new feature, uses recorded and predictive data to detect changes and trends, identifying opportunities to improve specific points in user journeys. 

Anything particularly important right now? 

Amid continued uncertainty of whether brands should advertise or even stay active on certain social platforms, it’s now as important as ever to measure traffic referral sources to your website — and what users do, or how well they engage, when they visit. We are seeing an increased demand in monitoring around this as businesses weigh up whether or not to change their social strategy or reconsider use of specific platforms. Having a smart and well-organised website analytics dashboard in place makes this information easily accessible and visually engaging for sharing with wider stakeholders. 

Let’s go 

Ultimately, if you only have fifteen minutes and you don’t want to be left behind or lose future-valuable data, simply access your Google Analytics and go through the migration process before July. (And in another fifteen minutes, try to play with some of the new features.) 

Otherwise, if you need help or if you’d like experienced and tailored advice on how to migrate – and what to do once you get there – talk to us and we would be happy to assist. 

Be prepared for the new season of Google Analytics and give yourself the best possible chance of positive results.