GA4 More Compliant With Data Privacy Laws
Google Analytics will be replaced by Google Analytics 4 next July. Millions of advertisers have already made the switch, while others are dragging their feet. My advice is to link your accounts to GA4 now, if you haven’t already. Here’s why:
- GA4 tracks users across multiple devices—mobile, tablet and desktop. Universal Analytics (UA) sees them all as unique visitors to your website.
- GA4 helps advertisers comply with evolving data privacy laws around the world.
- Start banking data in GA4 now, so that your advertisers have relevant data to help optimize their accounts and campaigns next July and beyond. Without linking GA4 now, that data will be lost forever.
Universal Analytics set a new standard for how user data is collected and organized. Introduced in 2012, Universal Analytics is almost obsolete due to data privacy regulations across the U.S and around the world.
Google Analytics 4 is the next generation of data and measurement. It collects event-based data from both websites and apps to better understand the customer journey. It uses event-based data instead of session-based. It includes privacy controls and behavioral and conversion modeling. Next July, it will be the only game in town.
The GA4 Setup Assistant wizard does not backfill your new GA4 property with historical data. Your GA4 property only collects data going forward. To see historical data, use the reports in your Universal Analytics property. You’ll be able to see your reports for an unspecified period of time. However, new user data will only flow into GA 4 properties.
To link your Google Ads account, go to Tools & Settings on your dashboard. Under Measurement, click on Audiences. Scroll to the left side of the page and click “Your Data Sources.” Just follow the prompts to share and link.
If you have any problems, the following link can help. Otherwise, call 1-866-2-Google.
While you’re at it, switch your account over to Data-Driven Attribution to capture full-funnel data and all touch points. Measurement is the foundation of machine learning and optimization of the algorithm. Better data also promotes better decisions.