Those of you who have switched over to the new version of Google Analytics – GA4 – congrats! I hope you are enjoying the new experience. For those marketers who are procrastinating about the GA4 switch – join the club! I’m right there with you. I am excited about the newer Google Analytics and its use cases for B2B companies. There is quite a bit to learn about how GA4 is different from Universal Analytics (or UA, the version of Google Analytics we know and love). I recommend this quick post to start learning.
One of the significant changes in GA4 is the shift away from pageviews as the primary measure of traffic or general user behavior. Google Analytics is pretty much entirely built on a cookie-based data model. And since the world is moving away from that, they are changing how marketers can leverage web data to get insights about their marketing programs and user behavior. GA4 users will be responsible for creating more customized “events” to measure their web or app traffic.
Pageviews will still live in GA4 as an “event” tracked by default. Cookies will become less reliable over time, as will the marketing data associated with them (like the traffic going to your demo page).
Does this mean the end for UTM codes? No. In fact, Google has added three more UTM parameters to the marketer’s toolkit:
- Source Platform
- Creative Format
- Marketing Tactic
This shows Google’s commitment to the UTM system. Performance-minded marketers will continue to use UTMs in GA4 to ensure their marketing campaigns are measured accurately.
Read more about the new parameters here!