Marketing without analytics is like throwing business cards into the wind and hoping they’ll land on a buyer. The industry has been completely transformed over the past several decades, allowing marketers to prove the results of ad dollars and campaigns. Most marketers today are already making use of Google Analytics. It is the industry gold standard for collecting data on your marketing efforts and customer behaviors.
But like all good marketing tools, Google Analytics doesn’t stay unchanged for long. In July of 2023, Google will sunset the popular Universal Analytics tool for tracking web data. It will be replaced with Google Analytics 4 (GA4). This new version of Google’s tracking will help marketers better understand the customer journey across multiple platforms and touchpoints. It’s analytics built for today’s environment.
Benefits of GA4 Over Universal Analytics
One of the biggest improvements GA4 brings is the ability to track a customer’s journey across multiple platforms. GA4 assigns attribution credit to more than just the last click using your Analytics data, and it helps you understand how your marketing activities collectively influence your conversions. You can export that analysis to Google Ads and Google Marketing Platform media tools to optimize campaigns.
Older versions of Analytics used the “last-click” method of attribution mentioned above. Customers could have interacted with multiple ads during their path to purchase, but Analytics would only give credit to the last ad they clicked on. GA4 gives marketers a better understanding of how effective ads are at moving customers down the funnel.
Get More Out of Your Data
GA4 makes the most of machine learning. It gives predictive insights about user behavior and conversions, while also creating new audiences of users likely to purchase. This helps marketers expand their reach and removes a sizeable amount of manual analysis and adjustment.
Here’s an example of how one business has benefited from GA4:
McDonald’s Hong Kong met its goal to grow mobile orders using a predictive audience of “likely seven-day purchasers” and exporting it to Google Ads — increasing app orders more than six times. The team saw a 2.3 times stronger ROI, a 5.6 times increase in revenue, and a 63% reduction in cost per action (Google, 2022).
According to Google, all standard Universal Analytics properties will stop processing new hits on July 1, 2023, and 360 Universal Analytics properties will stop processing new hits on October 1, 2023. After that, you’ll be able to access your previously processed data in Universal Analytics for at least six months
To get ahead of the game and make sure you don’t miss valuable data, it’s better to make the switch to GA4 sooner than later. Not all website platforms currently support GA4, but as support rolls out, you can work with your digital marketing team to upgrade your Analytics. For a smooth transition, get in touch with us at Strong Automotive Merchandising.
John Paul Strong
John Paul Strong combines his two decades of automotive marketing experience with a team of more than 140 professionals as owner and CEO of Strong Automotive.