Google Analytics 4 – A significant upgrade

Google Analytics 4 (aka GA4) is the latest version of Google’s web analytics platform which provides website owners with insights into their audience and how they interact with their web content.  GA4 is designed to be more intuitive and user-friendly than its predecessor, Universal Analytics, and it includes several new features and improvements.

One of the key differences between GA4 and Universal Analytics is the way that data is collected and processed. GA4 uses an event-based model, which means that it collects data based on user interactions with the website or app, rather than relying solely on pageviews. This allows for a more detailed understanding of user behavior and helps website owners identify key actions that users are taking.

GA4 also includes several new features, such as advanced machine learning capabilities that help predict future user behavior and automated insights that highlight important trends and anomalies in the data. It also offers more granular data controls, allowing website owners to better manage and control their data.

Overall, GA4 represents a significant upgrade over Universal Analytics and offers website and app owners more powerful insights into their audience and how they interact with their content. However, migrating to GA4 can be a complex process, and it’s important to carefully plan and execute the transition to avoid any data loss or disruptions to tracking.

Google Analytics 4 - Getting the best statistics from your website

How do you implement Google Analytics 4

Using Google Analytics 4 (GA4) involves several key steps:

  1. Set up a GA4 property: To use GA4, you first need to create a new GA4 property in your Google Analytics account. You can do this by navigating to the Admin section of your account and selecting “Create Property” under the “Property” column.
  2. Install the GA4 tracking code: Once you have created a GA4 property, you need to install the GA4 tracking code on your website or app. This involves adding the code snippet provided by Google to your website’s header or footer.
  3. Configure data streams: Data streams are used to collect data from specific sources, such as your website or app. You can create and configure data streams in the “Data Streams” section of your GA4 property.
  4. Set up events and conversions: In GA4, events are used to track user interactions with your website or app, while conversions track specific actions that users take, such as making a purchase. You can set up events and conversions in the “Events” and “Conversions” sections of your GA4 property.
  5. Analyze your data: Once you have set up your GA4 property and configured your tracking, you can start analyzing your data. The GA4 dashboard provides a range of data visualizations and reports that allow you to see how users are interacting with your website or app and identify areas for improvement.
  6. Take action: Finally, based on your analysis, you can take action to optimize your website or app and improve user engagement and conversions. GA4 provides a range of tools and integrations to help you take action, such as Google Ads and Google Optimize.

Overall, using GA4 requires a deep understanding of your website or app and your audience, as well as a willingness to experiment and iterate to improve your results.

Alternatives to Google Analytics

There are alternatives to Google Analytics that you can consider for tracking your website’s traffic and user behavior:

  1. Matomo: Formerly known as Piwik, Matomo is an open-source analytics platform that offers features similar to Google Analytics. It allows you to track website traffic, user behavior, and conversion rates.
  2. Clicky: Clicky is a real-time web analytics platform that offers features such as heatmaps, session replays, and goal tracking. It has a simple and easy-to-use interface.
  3. Adobe Analytics: Adobe Analytics is a powerful analytics platform that offers advanced features such as customer segmentation, predictive analytics, and marketing attribution.
  4. Mixpanel: Mixpanel is an analytics platform that specializes in tracking user behavior and engagement. It allows you to create funnels, track retention rates, and run A/B tests.
  5. Woopra: Woopra is an analytics platform that offers real-time tracking of website and mobile app user behavior. It also provides features such as customer profiles and journey reports.
  6. Open Web Analytics: Open Web Analytics is a free and open-source analytics platform that allows you to track website traffic, user behavior, and conversion rates. It also provides features such as heatmaps and funnel analysis.

These are just a few examples of the many alternatives to Google Analytics that are available. It’s important to evaluate your specific needs and choose an analytics platform that best suits your business goals and objectives.

Using Google Analytics 4 with Woocommerce

To use Google Analytics 4 (GA4) with WooCommerce, you need to set up a GA4 property and link it to your WooCommerce store. Here are the steps to set it up:

  1. Create a GA4 property following the steps outlined previously
  2. In your WooCommerce store, go to “WooCommerce” > “Settings” > “Integrations” > “Google Analytics”.
  3. Under the “Google Analytics 4” section, enter your GA4 measurement ID, which can be found in your GA4 property settings.
  4. Choose the data streams you want to track, such as your website or app.
  5. Configure the advanced settings as needed and click “Save Changes”.

Once your GA4 property is linked to your WooCommerce store, you can start tracking your website or app data using GA4. Some things to keep in mind when using GA4 with WooCommerce:

  1. Make sure you have enabled Enhanced Ecommerce tracking in your GA4 property settings to track important e-commerce metrics such as product views, add to carts, and purchases.
  2. Use custom events to track specific actions on your website or app, such as clicking on a button or completing a form.
  3. Take advantage of the advanced analysis features in GA4, such as machine learning insights and predictive metrics, to gain a deeper understanding of your customer behavior and make data-driven decisions.