But there was so much I didn't experience with the OLD analytics!
Okay so Google just upgraded their analytics platform, but what does that mean for you and your small business?
Now is a scary time to have to deal with digital curve balls. With so many businesses shifting to an online model over an in-person sales strategy, this seems like the most inopportune time to change a platform that delivers insights to how your visitors navigate and utilize your website.
The thing is...we don't really have a choice. It's like this is Google's world, and we're just living it. So let's break it down to what these new changes mean for you.
Google Analytics is integrating machine learning
Full disclosure this is really cool to me. As a marketer, I've spent hours in various web analytics accounts trying to compile and view data in a way that reveals trends and opportunities for improvement. We've spent time flipping between analytics modules trying to find patterns that will inform smarter digital marketing choices for our clients.
With this machine learning focus, Google Analytics will actually identify trends for you, not only in your own site, but in your industry as a whole.
This will be a huge time saver, and something I'm really excited to learn more about.
Google is getting better at identifying attribution
The customer journey is a long one. Rarely do your potential customers encounter one piece of advertising and make a purchasing decision - it's called the customer journey, not the customer shot gun decision.
Using this new analytics platform, you can follow along with your ideal customer, determining whether they first saw your ad in a search, but made their purchase decision weeks later in an app. With improved attribution measurements, you're able to assign a higher value number to marketing efforts that may not convert right away, but are an integral part of that customer journey.
Google is preparing for increased privacy demands
Your customers are getting more and more savvy about how their data is used on the internet. To prep for this, the new Google Analytics is again using machine learning and modeling to help fill in the knowledge gaps without stepping on anyone's privacy toes. As with all machine learning, it'll take a while before the data is fully reliable, but it's exciting that Google is working their AI magic to help marketers make the best decisions possible in the face of missing customer data.
Google is getting better at integrating information from your ad campaigns
Google will now be monitoring how your advertising performs across the web AND in apps. For example, it will bring in information on YouTube engagement from both the desktop site and in app.
I'm really interested to see where this bit goes. Generally I have noticed that Google Analytics doesn't always reflect what Google Ads reports, or even YouTube ads report. I hope this will help clear up some of that muddy water.
Google has already rolled out this updated platform, and every new analytics property will now be a Google Analytics 4 property. They'll no longer be supporting the Universal Analytics platform, and they do suggest that you create a new Google Analytics 4 property to run alongside any existing analytics account you may have.
Founder & Partner
Emily is N8's Chief Operating Officer. She's a data nerd and loves talking shop with other marketers.