Whether you’re new to Google Analytics or a veteran, you’ve probably heard about the latest iteration of the software giant’s tracking platform. At the very least, having a grasp of Google Analytics (GA4) basics will help you lead the curve ahead of rivals who (a) aren’t using the software or (b) or haven’t familiarised themselves with it.
If you’re already using the platform now’s the time to get to grips with GA4 basics before it becomes mandatory on July 1st 2023.
In this beginner’s guide to GA4 we’ll explain:
- How the latest release is different to its predecessor
- Why you should strongly consider upgrading now
- How to configure and start using the platform
Are businesses using GA4 yet?
GA4 is still new. Become an early adopter and you can get to grips with the platform before your competitors.
How many law firms use GA4? These figures are not yet available. That said, indicative figures are trickling through.
Marketers are already getting to grips with GA4 basics – with figures stacking up as follows…
- 54% want to use it on behalf of their clients
- 69% plan to start using GA4 in the future
- 42% think the platform is useful
Soon, marketers working for your competitors will start leveraging the benefits of the platform. Other rivals in your sphere will soon have a grasp of GA4 basics too – so now’s the time to lead the pack.
Google Analytics versus Google Analytics 4: how are the two different?
If you’re expecting minor tweaks, think again. A lot has changed – both in terms of data collection and data structure. The vastly remodelled version is now user- and event-centric – rather than focusing on sessions.
Previously, user interactions were grouped together within specified timeframes. The switch to an events-based model means you’ll be able to understand user behaviour across multiple platforms and predict their actions.
Should I switch to Google Analytics 4 or stick with the current version?
Next year GA4 will become the default. This means you’ll have to familiarise yourself with the new version eventually. So why wait?
Because Google Analytics offers superior data collection you’ll benefit from improved insights that translate into better strategies.
GA4 for beginners: getting started
Mastering GA4 basics needn’t be hard. By following a structured approach you can get to grips with the fundamentals quickly and benefit from insights that’ll help you build superior marketing strategies.
#1 Configuration is as simple as A, B, C
Please note: the following steps assume you already have an Analytics account. If you’re starting from scratch visit Google’s GA4 set-up page to get started.
To configure GA4:…
- Login into your account
- Click on the admin button
- Go to the Gear icon (bottom left)
- Check the right account has been chosen
- Visit GA4 Setup Assistant (option 1)
#2 Use the Setup Wizard to create your Property (no wand required)
Once inside the Setup Wizard click on the blue Create Property button to get started. Don’t worry – your original data won’t be affected and you can manually replicate your settings if required (as the platform develops over time Google will create migration tools to make this process easier
Once you’ve set up your property GA4’s set-up assistant will take care of the rest – so you won’t need to automatically activate enhanced measurements
GA4 basics: three ways to generate great reports
Having set up your account it’s time to start generating reports.. The GA4 Home Page provides a high-level overview designed to show you which campaigns are succeeding, pages with the most digital footfall, and users’ locations.
Once inside, the following reports will be useful:
- Use GA4’s Realtime Report to verify your tracking code is functioning correctly and monitor activity in the moment. You can even focus is on a single user and ‘spy’ on them as they use your website.
- The View User Snapshot feature tells you all you need to know about visitors at a glance – including their device, location, and engagement behaviour.
- Use the Life Cycle reporting option to understand:
- How prospects access your conversion funnel
- Their behaviour once they’re inside of it
Learning the GA4 basics now will save you time later. Yes, there’s a lot to learn, even if you’re familiar with the current version (more so if you’re a novice). But do you really want to give your rivals a headstart?
If you don’t have the time to learn the ins and outs of Google Analytics 4 then why not invest in experts who can manage and monitor your marketing efforts instead.
With extensive experience in helping professional services firms generate more website traffic and leads we’re perfectly positioned to help.
Contact us now to start the conversation and take the next step.