7 Incredible Features You Should Use in Google Analytics 4

Google announced that the original Google Analytics (Universal Analytics) will be discontinued come 2023. This leads to a very tricky question. What next? 

Fortunately, the good developers at Google have created an even better version of Universal Analytics, Google Analytics 4 or GA4 for short.

In this article, you will learn how Google Analytics 4 is better than its predecessor, its features and benefits, and how to get started with GA4. So grab your favorite beverage and take a seat; you don’t want to miss this.

What is Google Analytics 4?

The previous analytics tool — Universal Analytics (UA), purpose was to help businesses understand how their target audience uses the internet and what they want. UA’s job was to track user data from websites on desktop computers. Technology and people’s habits change, and over time, people started using different devices to access the world wide web.

As you can imagine, tracking users on desktop only wasn’t feasible, so Google had to change tact. Google Analytics 4 was born, and it helps you measure activity from other platforms. GA4 accomplishes this by using events to track user data as opposed to only using cookies.

Another feature that makes GA4 unique is its design, that’s engineered to ensure maximum privacy. GA4 will no longer keep IP addresses in its database. This ensures that people control how their data is collected and used.

As you have seen, Google Analytics 4 is the solution for the modern business that wants to know how their clients interact with the internet. As you’ll see below, it is more advanced and follows data privacy regulations.

(Source: Search Engine Journal)

New Google Analytics 7 Features

So what GA4 features should make you most excited? Check out the following.

Predictive Analytics

Universal Analytics had artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities. However, GA4 takes AI and ML to a whole new level. Once you set it up, GA4 starts gathering data to create predictive audiences.

With GA4, you can now predict who is likely to purchase your products. The best part; it’s free!

Custom Reports

GA4 now lets you create detailed custom reports. Unlike Universal Analytics’ less than comprehensive dashboards, reports in GA4 are designed like an Excel workbook. That’s a high level of detail that the reports provide to you.

You can better understand data by creating reports, tables, and visualizations of almost any data, such as funnels, segments, or paths.

Once you have your tables and visualizations, you can share them with your team, print them as PDFs or download them as excel documents easily.

Create and Track Events

GA4 has made tracking events easy and quicker. GA4 tracks basic events automatically, letting you decide which other events you would like to track. You can quickly create new events if you don’t see an event you would like to track on the automatically tracked or enhanced measurement events.

You can do this in two ways;

  • Placing conditions using already tracked parameters or
  • Modifying an already tracked event.

Create and Track Conversions

GA4 has made it easier to track conversions. Once an event is tracked, you have the option to mark it as a conversion by toggling it on. Simple.

Universal Analytics lets you track only 20 permanent conversions, while Google Analytics 4 lets you track 30 conversions you can delete when you no longer need them.

Customizable Automated Tables

Simply put, GA4 lets you see data. For example, Universal Analytics offers lots of data that is useful. However, these data tables aren’t easily manipulated to view them in a particular way—there aren’t many options to manipulate the data.

However, with GA4, you can customize data in any report. You can even save the view so you can view your data the way you want.

Anomaly Detection

GA4 can help you learn any issues and problems on your site’s line graphs. For instance, if your site normally gets a certain number of visitors daily and doesn’t, GA4 will alert you.

To use this feature, head over to Explorations and turn on anomaly detection for line graphs. GA4 will need some time to learn about your site and, once ready, will tell you of any anomaly.

Easily Create Audience Segments

In UA, you had to save every segment you created. However, GA4 makes it easy to create segments without saving them. You can do this using the comparisons tool on each reporting page.

How Will Google Analytics 4 Help Your Business?

First, you need clear business objectives — like app installs or generating leads. Once you have your objectives, here are some of the ways GA4 will help your business;

Better Knowledge of Customer Wants

Due to GA4’s ability to track events, you can now understand what your customers want. How? Getting data from many devices gives you a complete picture of your customer’s lifecycle.

Better ROI

Using Data-Driven attribution, you can see how different marketing campaigns and activities work together and how they affect conversions. This saves you the hustle of making conclusions from incomplete data.

Better Insights

You can measure almost everything on your site’s performance; user interactions, conversions, etc., using GA4 capabilities and other integrations like Google Ads.

Better Data Privacy

You can now measure how people use your website while keeping their privacy. GA4 has better privacy tools such as the country-level privacy settings to minimize user-level data collection while still allowing measurement capabilities.

How To Set Up Google Analytics 4

GA4 has many new features and settings that shouldn’t faze you. Configuring GA4 is pretty simple.

Steps For Configuring GA4

There are 3 ways to set up GA4;

  1. Setting up Google Analytics 4 for the first time
    This option is for a new user of analytics who wants to collect data. You can find a detailed step-by-step procedure on Google Analytics help.
  2. Adding Google Analytics 4 to a website with Universal Analytics
    This option is for a seasoned user of analytics who wants to connect GA4 to a website with Universal Analytics. You can find a detailed step-by-step procedure on Google Analytics help.
  3. Adding Google Analytics 4 to a website builder platform or CMS (content management system)
    You can use this third option to connect GA4 to a website builder platform or CMS. You can find a detailed step-by-step procedure on Google Analytics help.

Final Thoughts

Now that you’ve seen what analytics can do, you can now go ahead and start using its capabilities to your advantage.

In summary, Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the modern solution to analytics for businesses of all kinds. With Universal Analytics (UA) being discontinued in 2023, you need a new solution that is better than UA, and that solution is GA4.

With GA4, you’ve learned that you can customize reports and automated tables, create and track events and conversions and finally detect anomalies.

Using GA4 for your business will help you gain better insights and knowledge of your clients and ensure you fulfill data privacy laws and regulations.