We all know that Google Analytics helps with tracking and analysing key metrics of your website. With its latest release, Google Analytics GA4 has created a lot of buzz and excitement. Many marketers are eager to understand how it differs from Universal Analytics (UA), and what the most important changes are when switching over to GA4.
But did you know that there is a major difference between Google Analytics GA4 and Universal Analytics? In this article, we will discuss Google Analytics GA4 vs UA with regard to the key differences between these two important analytics tools, as well as the benefits of Google Analytics. So if you are ready to learn more about these important analytics tools, read on!
What is Google Analytics UA and How Does it Work?
Revolutionizing how user data is analyzed and stored, Universal Analytics was launched in 2012 to provide a more powerful method for tracking website activity. With enhanced tracking codes as a universal analytics property, websites could now leverage features that provide deeper insights into user behaviour than ever before!
Compared to traditional analytics tools, Universal Analytics operates in a more intelligent way that can tailor user experiences and web content based on Google Analytics data collected from multiple devices. With this powerful tool, you can gain stronger insights into how your users are interacting with your website – whether they are returning customers or new visitors. Some of the key benefits of Universal Analytics properties include:
- Offline conversions
- Advanced segment for visitors
- Custom dimension
- Custom search engines
- Data collection and activation
- Flexible session and campaign timeout settings
What is Google Analytics GA4 and How Does it Work?
Google Analytics 4 provides a powerful web analytics service to help you track your website and application engagement, all in one place. With the insights gained from this comprehensive platform, a Google Analytics expert can make informed decisions about how best to reach and engage with potential customers.
Google Analytics 4 not only tracks customer behaviour across multiple platforms but also uses AI and machine learning to give you deeper insights into how users interact with your website or app. GA4 takes customer privacy seriously, which is necessary in the wake of laws like GDPR and CCPA.
Its state-of-the-art features – such as its privacy-first tracking, Google tag manager, cross-channel data measurement, and AI predictive analytics – give unparalleled insights that no other tool can match.
What are the key differences between GA4 and UA?
One of the biggest distinctions between Google Analytics 4 and Universal Analytics is that GA4 provides the Google Analytics expert with the capability to track the activity on both websites and apps. Additionally, there are several distinctions between these two options, some of which include:
A Different Dashboard
The most evident change you’ll see is the completely revised dashboard you find on GA4. It has been streamlined significantly, and some of your custom reports relocated elsewhere. On the right side of your screen, you’ll find a navigation bar that has buttons to access Home and Reports pages, as well as features like Explore, Advertising, and Configure options plus an extensive library.
Comprehensive Google Ads Integration
Google Analytics’ latest feature – the ability to measure app and web integrations together – is a huge step in helping advertisers make informed decisions. With this new tool, businesses have access to comprehensive insights that allow them to make more data-driven decisions.
With this integration, you can gain a comprehensive understanding of your performance on Google Ads, YouTube Ads, and other paid channels like Facebook. In addition to those sources of traffic, a Google Analytics expert will also be able to measure the success of organic search engine results pages (SERPs), social media platforms, and email marketing campaigns. Finally, this mobile and app data integration makes it easier to gauge the success of your marketing efforts, no matter what channel you used to acquire customers.
A Revolutionary System for Data Regulation
Google Analytics has been redesigned to accommodate the constantly-changing privacy regulations with more precise control over collecting, storing, and assessing user data. To build a more comprehensive understanding of their customers, Google is designing an approach to collect data that does not rely on cookies or identifiers.
This novel platform will use advanced data modelling techniques and extrapolate customer journey patterns from existing incomplete or inaccessible sources of information.
Which Is the Better Option for Your Website – GA4 or UA?
Overall, if you are looking for a robust analytics tool that can provide accurate insights into both website and app activity, Google Analytics experts recommend GA4. With its streamlined reporting, comprehensive integration with Google Ads, and innovative data privacy features, GA4 gives you powerful tools to measure performance across all channels while offering search engine optimization. However, if you are satisfied with your UA experience, there might be no need to upgrade. Want expert advice? Consider hiring Google Analytics consultants to give you the best advice for what works for your website.