In case you haven’t noticed, when you set up Google Analytics lots of things have changed. Google Analytics 4.0 (GA4) includes several improvements that will benefit marketers and webmasters. Here are some highlights:
GA4 Tracks Website Goals by Event
In the past, Universal Analytics tracked user interaction by session. This meant that no matter how many actions the user took on your website, it only counted as one goal (or conversion).
In Google Analytics 4, user interactions with your website are event based. This means that you can determine what goals you want to achieve and then measure them specifically. For example, perhaps you have a goal of getting users to watch videos on your website. If someone watches 4 videos, that would now count as 4 conversions in GA4
Events such as file downloads, first sessions, and clicks are automatically tracked in GA4. Here is the full list of tracked events in GA4. Make sure when setting up your data stream, you turn on Enhanced Measurement. You can click the gear icon to see what all is being measured.
Bounce Rate No Longer Exists in GA4
All that time you spent reducing the bounce rate on your website and suddenly it doesn’t matter? Well, yes. Since GA4 is tracking user interaction by event, there is no longer a need to track users who are not interacting with your website. Instead, GA4 tracks Engagement Rate. Engagement rate is calculated by engaged sessions / total sessions.
An Engaged Session is one that:
- Lasts longer than 10 seconds
- Contains more than one pageview
- Contains at least one conversion event
How to View Engagement Rate in GA4
Engagement Rate is found in the following Reports
User Acquisition Report
Traffic Acquisition Report
Remember the days when you did your analytics reporting and saw a huge spike in data, only to find out it was a bot hitting your site? Well, those days are gone! GA4 has built in spam detection, so no more crazy numbers or dashed hopes.
You Can Build Predictive Audiences to Use for Your Google Ads Account
You can use Google’s predictive metrics to build predictive audiences for your Google Ads campaigns. For example, you can set up custom audiences of people who are likely to make a purchase of a product you are offering within the next 7 days and you can target your Google Ads towards that audience.
To create predictive audiences, go to Configure, Audiences, and click on New Audience. Then Click on Predictive. In order to be able to collect data for Predictive Audiences, you must meet the prerequisites which include setting up a purchase event.
Change isn’t always easy and for some, GA4 might seem overwhelming at first. However, with some adjustment, you will be on your way to collecting meaningful data to inform all your User Experience and Marketing Decisions surrounding your website.