Source: wpmudev

Why is Google Sunsetting Universal Analytics?

The biggest reason Google is discontinuing Universal Analytics is that UA was originally built to report-on and track independent sessions, rather than considering the multiple touch points visitors will have with any given website.

Google thought this method of measurement and reporting was outdated, and it’s where Google Analytics 4 comes into the picture.

Because GA4 on the other hand, runs across the web, apps, and doesn’t rely exclusively on cookies. It also uses an event-based model to deliver more accurate, user-based reporting.

What is an event-based model?

According to Google: “An event allows you to measure a distinct user interaction on a website or app.”

For example: Loading a page, clicking a link, and completing a purchase – these are all interactions you can measure with events.

GA4 Reports Snapshot
GA4 Reports Snapshot.

Finally GA4 is a lot more privacy-focused than UA, for example, it does not store user IP addresses.

Upgrading Universal Analytics Properties To Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 is now the default for all new properties created in your Google Analytics account.

And depending on the date you created a GA property, you may or may not need to upgrade it.

More specifically:

  • If you created your property before October 14, 2020, you’re likely using a Universal Analytics property.
  • If you created your property after October 14, 2020, you’re likely using a Google Analytics 4 property already (no action is required).

But you can also create a new GA4 property from an existing Universal Analytics property and they will be nicely integrated.