Whether you opted into automatic migration or updated GA4 manually, you’ll likely still have some changes to update, both to the data itself and for the stakeholders who review the data.
To break this down into a manageable process, here are three concrete steps you’ll need to take.
Step 1: Understand the differences between UA and GA4
Generally speaking, GA4 covers more than just traditional ‘conversions,’ but the extension of events now also heavily tracks customer engagement. Overall, customer engagement tracking is super important nowadays with so much competition for every industry, as well as a new focus on content optimization for long-term strategies.
Here is an overview of the differences between UA and GA4:
GA4 goes beyond the traditional concept of conversions, which typically refer to specific actions like purchases in e-commerce or demo requests in B2B SaaS. While tracking these conversions remains essential, GA4 recognizes that user engagement is a more nuanced and comprehensive metric to consider, which is why GA4 focuses on the concept of “event tracking.”
GA4 relies heavily on event-based tracking. It allows you to track a wide range of user interactions and events on your website or app. These events can encompass traditional conversions but also include a broader spectrum of user engagement activities like engaged sessions and other customer engagement metrics.
Customer engagement refers to the interactions and behaviors of users on your platform. GA4 provides the tools to track various customer engagement metrics, such as:
Content Consumption: Tracking how users engage with your content, including pageviews, time spent on pages, and scroll depth.
User Interactions: Monitoring actions like clicks on specific elements, video views, social media shares, and downloads.
Site Search: Measuring how often users utilize your site’s search feature, what they search for, and how successful their searches are.
User Journeys: Using the path exploration report, you are able to understand the path the user takes through your site or app. You can see all engagement metrics for each touchpoint on your website, allowing you to understand the user journey better and make decisions around improving the lead or purchase cycle.
Audience Engagement: Analyzing how users engage with your website or app over multiple sessions and their frequency of visits.
Tracking customer engagement is vital because it provides insights into how effectively you’re capturing and retaining your audience’s attention. By understanding how users engage with your content, you can adapt your strategies to better meet their needs, address pain points, and create more compelling and relevant website experiences.
This step should also include comprehensively updating event tracking, which you can find instructions on in the section “How do I track an event in GA4?” below.
Step 2: Update all ongoing KPI reports & tech stack integrations
Many marketers use GA4 to live import marketing data to other dashboards such as Looker Studio, so updating these reports to ensure a smoother transition (particularly when stakeholders review them) is essential.
Another area to consider is utilizing the GA4 reports, including Event reports, User reports, and Conversions reports. GA4 offers more flexibility in customizing and creating reports, so it’s worthwhile to explore the options available.
You also have the ability to create endless custom reports tailored to your specific reporting needs. Use the “Analysis” section in the GA4 interface to build custom reports and dashboards that provide insights into your marketing KPIs