The end of Universal Analytics is almost here - are you prepared?

As the digital landscape evolves, so does the fate of Universal Analytics (UA). On 1st July 2024, Google will decommission UA, ushering in the era of Google Analytics 4 (GA4).  

The end of Universal Analytics is almost here - are you prepared?

Since October 2020, GA4 has been the default choice for new projects but users were still able to access historical data in GA4. This will no longer be the case from next week. However, here at ClerksWell we are ready to guide you through this pivotal transition. 

There are a number of key steps you need to take to ensure valuable data and insights are not lost. This can be done in several ways: 

Individual Reports: 

  • If you have specific reports you want to rescue, manually export them. Choose the report, adjust settings, and hit that ‘export’ button, selecting your preferred file type. 

Google Analytics Spreadsheet Add-On: 

  • Google recommends this as the optimal export method. Install the add-on, use the Google UA common reports template, and base your export on it. Enter the view ID of your property, then run the reports. 

Google Analytics Reporting API: 

  • When dealing with large data volumes, consider this option. It requires some technical know-how, but don’t be alarmed. You can use the Google Analytics Reporting API to extract data from UA and store it in the cloud. Google’s quick start guide will be your trusty companion. 

BigQuery (For GA 360 Users): 

  • If you’re a Google Analytics 360 user, you can export data via BigQuery. Just enable BigQuery in your Google API console, and you’re all set. 

Migration to GA4 

Alongside securing UA data, you need to consider migrating to GA4. If you haven’t completed this transition yet, it’s time to start thinking about it. This is simple to get set up with Google’s migration instructions. 

However, there are a few changes that means data is tracked slightly differently. You may want to contact our team to help walk you through the changes and ensure tracking is set up to optimally track relevant insights for your business.  

What are the main differences in tracking: 

Tracking Paradigm: 

  • UA: Relies on sessions and pageviews. It measures user interactions within a given period as sessions or “hits.” 
  • GA4: Focuses on event-based data. It tracks specific events (e.g., clicks, video views) rather than just pageviews. 

User Metrics: 

  • UA: Reports Total Users and New Users. 
  • GA4: Reports Total Users, Active Users, and New Users. 

Total Users: The total number of unique users who logged an event. Active Users: Distinct users who visited your website or app during an engaged session. New Users: Users who interacted with your site or app for the first time. 

Bounce Rate: 

  • UA: Calculates bounce rate based on pageviews. 
  • GA4: Doesn’t have a direct bounce rate metric. Instead, it focuses on engagement and active users. 

Event Tracking: 

  • UA: Requires manual event tracking setup. 
  • GA4: Automatically captures events, making it easier to track specific user interactions. 

Machine Learning Insights: 

  • UA: Lacks built-in machine learning capabilities. 
  • GA4: Incorporates machine learning for predictive metrics and insights.

Privacy Protection: 

  • UA: Doesn’t prioritise privacy to the same extent. 
  • GA4: Offers advanced privacy features, such as IP anonymisation by default.

Reporting Discrepancies: 

Expect differences of up to 10% in pageviews and up to 20% in user and session-related metrics between UA and GA4. 

How can ClerksWell help? 

If you need support backing up UA data or getting set up on GA4, we can help. We host workshops with key stakeholders to asses your business reporting requirements to implement new and improved tracking and build custom reporting.  

Get in touch at if you’re in need of our help with your Google Analytics! 

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