Even if you have only a passing interest in Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) and website analytics, you can’t help but be aware that a major data migration is about to take place between Google Universal Analytics (UA) and Google Analytics 4 (GA4), with the former ceasing to process new data hits from July 2023.
While that may seem a while away, it’s important that you set up a data migration plan in advance to smooth the transition, which is going to happen in any case. In this article, we’re going to look at the differences between UA and GA4 and why early migration can be beneficial to you.
Both versions of Google Analytics provide the same basic function — that of monitoring traffic to and from your website, as well as your visitors’ behaviour while they are there. This covers everything from what search terms bring them to your site, what pages they access during their session, how long they stick around, where they go when they leave, where they are in the purchase cycle, and so much more. Whether you favour UA or GA4, Google’s analytics tools are some of the most impressive and user-friendly in the business.
While the fundamentals remain the same, GA4 brings several new touches to the data analysis game. These are just some of the key changes:
Mobile App Activity Tracking
Instead of logging mobile and website activity separately, GA4 can log them alongside one another, building a more detailed picture of your visitor’s journey.
Less Reliance on Cookies
GA4 no longer relies exclusively on cookies, nor does it store visitors’ IP addresses. This makes things safer and more secure for your visitors and complies with various international data privacy legislation.
Not only does this help you see how your marketing strategy influences conversions, that analysis can be exported directly to both Google Marketing Platform and Google Ads to optimise your next campaign.
Any software can tell you what your site visitor has just done. GA4 takes it a step further by predicting what they’re going to do next. This includes metrics such as Purchase Probability (likelihood of making a purchase in the next 7 days), which helps you build an image of your target audience, and Churn Probability (likelihood of not visiting your site or app over the next seven days), which helps you identify likely targets for retention via a marketing campaign.
Google will stop creating data for UA accounts in July 2023, so you might be wondering what the rush is to migrate. It’s nine months away – that’s ages!
Except that it isn’t… not really.
When it comes to any kind of data migration process, leaving things to the last minute is rarely a good idea. If you make the switch on June 30, 2023 and something goes wrong, what then? It’s better by far to migrate well ahead of the deadline to give you and your tech team the opportunity to recover from any slip-ups.
Perhaps a more pertinent reason why you should begin your data migration early is that GA4 is really good. It offers greater detail concerning your customers and their paths from first visit to final sale, making it easier to spot key conversion points. Knowing your client base and their motivations is key to engaging them and winning more business, and GA4 can help you do that.
Website hosting – or web hosting – refers to the place where your website lives. This is normally a remote computer server that holds all the information that forms your website.
Simply put, website maintenance involves checking your website for any issues and mistakes, as well as keeping it updated and relevant.
Data migration can be tricky if you don’t know what you’re doing. Fortunately, help is at hand. Here at Be Bold Studios, we can help you migrate all your website analytics data from UA to GA4 in plenty of time for the big switch-over, as well as provide you with additional assistance in maximising user engagement through first-class SEO. To see what we can do for you, call Be Bold Studios today on 0747 688 7743 to arrange a consultation with one of our data migration experts.