Google has announced the end of Universal Analytics – Google Analytics 4 (or GA4) will be replacing UA on July 1, 2023, when standard Universal Analytics properties will no longer process data. You'll be able to see your Universal Analytics reports for a period of time after July 1, 2023. However, new data will only flow into Google Analytics 4 properties. Eventually, historical UA data may also become unavailable.
How is Google Analytics 4 different from Universal Analytics?
Universal Analytics was built in mind with desktop sessions and cookies. Meanwhile, GA4 does not rely exclusively on cookies, operates across platforms and devices more effectively, and uses an event-based data model.
In a time of increasing mobile internet browsing and stricter user privacy controls, GA4 is able to offer more meaningful insights than Universal Analytics, especially in terms of the customer journey which will help you spend less time and resources on analysis and more time on optimising your marketing efforts.
What this means
This means that if you are currently using Universal Analytics and do not have GA4 set up, you will only be able to collect universal analytics data until 1st July 2023. After that, you will no longer have new data flowing into your analytics.
Google stated “All standard Universal Analytics properties will stop processing new hits on July 1, 2023, and 360 Universal Analytics properties will stop processing new hits on October 1, 2023. After that, you’ll be able to access your previously processed data in Universal Analytics for at least six months. Learn more about what to expect.”
What you need to do
To maintain analytics for your website, you need to set up GA4 as soon as possible. We recommend that you set up your GA4 by July 1, 2022, at the latest so that you have 1 year’s worth of data to compare in GA4 already before UA stops working. Getting your GA4 set up early also means you will have more time to get familiar with the new interface and functionality of GA4 before the official switch in July next year.
Official resources currently available from Google:
- Google Analytics 4 training and support
- Introduction to Google Analytics 4 for Developers
- Meet the next generation of Google Analytics
- Prepare for the future with Google Analytics 4
If you require any assistance setting up Google Analytics 4 (GA4) please reach out via the form below: