November 19, 2021

6 min read

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It’s been almost a year since Google released the new & the fourth version of analytics “Google Analytics 4.0”. The previous three updates were Urchin, Classic & Universal Analytics – the one before the GA4.0 People are still confused about the difference between the previous ones. This article will highlight the differences, features & advantages of the new version. 

What Is Google Analytics 4.0?

Google Analytics 4.0 is basically a new & rebranded version of the Google Apps + Web Analytics which came out in beta version in 2020. GA4.0 is capable of providing predictive insights, much better integration with Google Ads, Cross-Device Measurements & finally, giving you more control through granularly arranged data. 

What is Universal Analytics?

Universal Analytics is the previous version of Analytics. This was in practical use prior to Oct 14, 2020, overtaken by GA4.0. 

Difference Between GA4.0 & Universal Analytics

As GA4.0 is the updated version, it looks way different than the previous version. If the other previous versions are compared, the Interfaces of both Classic & Universal Analytics were indistinguishable & people often relied on Google Tag Assistant to spot which version the website was running.  

The GA4.0’s major update resolved this & many other problems as the entire interface has been redesigned. ‘Audience’, ‘Acquisition’, ‘Behaviour’ and ‘Conversion’ have been replaced by the Collective Titles of ‘Life Cycle’, ‘User’, ‘Events’, ‘Explore’ and ‘Configure’.  

Features of GA4.0

We have collected some information on the fundamental differences between the recent & previous analytics. 

1-Event-Driven Data

The Event-Driven Data replaces the complex system of Page Views with a more simplified & flexible system of Events. In the previous version, Page Views & Sessions were separated into reports that were pretty difficult for marketers & data analysts to find the correlation among the two. Also, the Events were to be configured & set up manually, leaving the site owners with the disadvantage of being unaware of what visitors were doing on their sites. The GA4.0 divided the events into four categories:

  • Automatically Collected Events
    This feature removed the Manual Hassle of Events set up as the new version automatically tracks the events like page_view, first_visit, and session_start when the GA4.0 Base Code is installed.
  • Enhanced Measurement
    This, too, is automatically collected – which you can enable or disable based on the website’s functionality. This includes any File Download, Outbound Link Click, Scroll Tracking, Video Engagements, or any Site Search.
  • Recommended Events
    This event requires a manual setup, but it is being supported by Google’s already defined parameters & names. It includes the recommendation by Google divided into Industry types like Real Estate, eCommerce, Travel, etc.
  • Custom Events
    Different types of sites call for different event tracking. This feature serves those requirements through which you customize based on what your website needs. The previous version’s Category, Label & Action features have been replaced by Parameters. It is currently limited to 500 distinctively named events which might increase in near future.

2-Cookies & Data Analysis

The GA4.0 version has been designed by keeping the future insight that could be with or without the cookies. The Third Party Cookies system has been phased out, and the new version is modeled around the concept of Machine Learning that shall fill the gaps where the data is not completed and give a broader understanding of the potential impact of both Multi-device & Offline Conversions which apparently goes beyond Cookies.

3-BigQuery’s Connection

The final feature of the newly released version of GA4.0 is the Free Connection to BigQuery. Prior to this update, only GA360 users had the access to this feature which actually differentiated between the paid & free GA Users. Through BigQuery, Complex & large data sets can be queried in no time which is a huge benefit to those Users who had to deal with Complex Segments, Sampling & then Analysing. BigQuery removes this hassle by providing the ability to interrogate the Data Sets without Sampling.   

 

4-Firebase & Google Analytics

Google Analytics basically helps you to gauge Consumer Behavior on your Web and App. This Software Development Kit allows the marketers to define their own Custom Events relevant to their business needs. Once the Data is collected, it can be checked in the Firebase Console Dashboard through which you can make informed decisions about the App’s Marketing & Optimisation.   

5-Advantages of GA4.0

Through the newly updated version of Google Analytics, you can make use of the techniques offered in the GA4.0 like focusing on specific insights & exporting the Data Sets. 

  • You can do the Funnel Analysis which takes you through the Customer Journey Cycle which can pretty much tell you about the Starting & Ending points of the Sessions. 
  • The second advantage is the Segments Overlap Study through which you can compare up to three user segments & check how they overlap.
  • The final advantage is the User Exploring through which you can check the behavior of the Anonymous Users.

What Does GA4.0 Mean For You?

It is now been clear that Google Analytics 4.0 consists of features & techniques that can be utilized in more professional & mannered data analysis to up your game in the Industry. The new version is based on Machine Learning which equips you with insights & a broader understanding of how visitors are behaving on your site. Sooner or later, the Concept of Cookies shall fade away while the world of Machine Learning will be unveiled. Only those, who’ll start paying heed to adapt to these changes shall take the lead in their relevant industries. 

Why Take BoostRoas On Board With You?

BoostRoas can help you transform Consumer Behavior into Actionable Insights through our Reporting & Analytics Services. To make the most of your Digital Business, you need to have a partner that helps you set up the Analytics & Reporting System to help you bring your clients/customers what they need. 

BoostRoas has extensive experience in Google’s Universal Analytics and has mastered the whole process of migration & execution of the new version – Google Analytics 4.0  We have a team of Expert Professionals with a Solid Sense of Collecting & Analysing Data through BigQuery & SQL which can make your future pretty much safe. 

 

 

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Written by:

Erdem Demirli

Analytics Technical Lead

The number of pixel colors in digital is increasing day by day. This means a more colorful digital future. Erdem loves to use these colors. For him, patience is the greatest strength, learning is a never ending story.

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