The Shift from Universal Analytics to Google 4

The Shift from Universal Analytics to Google 4

Google announced on March 16th, 2022, that they would be replacing the current version of Google Analytics (3 or Universal Analytics) in 2023 with Google Analytics 4 (4 (GA4).

Google is trying to develop new measurement standards and protect user privacy.

Universal Analytics will stop data processing from July 1st, 2023, and Universal Analytics 360, October 1st, 2023. It is now the right time to switch to GA4 for your cross-platform analysis solution.

Find out the top benefits of Google Analytics 4 for your business and how it can help you:


1. Monitoring of events across platforms

Google claims Universal Analytics was created for online measurement. It was designed to be anchored on the desktop web, independent sessions, and easier to observe data from cookies.

GA4 will, on the other hand, not rely upon cookies but will measure and track events across multiple platforms and websites (e.g., desktop, mobile, and apps).

2. Data-driven attribution 

GA4 users will be able to measure both conversion and non-converting activities using the data-driven Attribution feature. This will give them detailed information about how marketing activities impact customer journeys.

3. Integration with Google products enhanced

Integrating GA4 and other Google products, such as Google Ads, will give you better Analytics insights and help you optimize your campaigns. All customers now have Display and Video 360 integrations that enhance your marketing campaign performance.

4. Security and privacy 

GA4 will provide greater privacy protection through extensive data collection controls. GA4 will not keep IP addresses, unlike Universal Analytics.


1. Session Counts 

Different platforms have different ways of counting sessions. This will likely result in a lower overall session count and impact year-over-2018 reporting. This discrepancy should be monitored for reporting purposes.

2. Conversion Count 

The new Google Analytics platform will probably result in slightly higher conversion numbers, as the logic has also changed. This discrepancy should be taken into consideration when reporting year-over-year.

3. Bounce Rate 

The GA4 bounce rate metric has been removed. This KPI must be replaced by engagement rate. The new engagement metrics will be placed into the business's specific operations.


You can take many steps to correctly capture and track data when setting up a Google Analytics account.

1. Linked Accounts

All existing Google Ads accounts should be linked to the new GA4 property.

2. Conversion Import

Incorporate new web conversion events from GA4 into your existing Google Ads accounts. Use new conversion actions to automate bidding strategies, data analysis, and future optimization.

3. Importance of Audience List

After linking the account, import the audience lists from the GA4 account to Google Ads. This will support audience creation and remarketing.

4. SA360 Integration

To support data retention, reporting, Darwin budget optimization, and bid optimization, integrate GA4 with an existing SA360 Account.


1. Tracking 

Universal Analytics uses hit-based trackers, which track hits to the following types of hits: Page Hits (Event Hits), Ecommerce Hits (Social Media Hits)). GA4, however, uses event-based tracking. This means that every.

An event can be created from user interaction on the site. Universal Analytics also allows a new campaign to trigger a session regardless of activity. GA4 does not allow for new campaign interactions, which could lead to lower session counts.

2. Goals

GA4 will no longer use Goals as a measure like Universal Analytics. Instead, GA4 users can label specific events with conversions.

3. Events

GA4 will not include Event values like Categories, Actions, and Labels. Instead, GA4 will have four types of Events: Automatically Collect, Enhanced Measurements, and Recommended Events. GA4 allows you to create custom events, but GA4 users should only use the automatically generated events unless the conversion is not included in the automatically collected events.


Universal Analytics will stop data monitoring on July 1st, 2023.

Enable GA4 as soon as possible to ensure year-over-year data when Universal Analytics data is unavailable.

To ensure data continuity and familiarity with the new GA4, set up dual tracking in Universal Analytics and GA4.

Google states that historical Universal Analytics data will remain accessible for six months. However, switching to GA4 as soon as possible is recommended to avoid manual comparisons, and cross-platform data pulls.

Here at EWM, we're well aware of the constant changes taking place at Google. Why not reach out to our experts for the latest updates, information and support?

Contact EWM today!



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