The Death of Google Analytics UA

Google’s Universal Analytics (UA) was fundamental to businesses since its introduction in 2012, enabling websites to collect vital traffic, engagement, and conversion data. However, with the release of Google Analytics 4 (GA4) in 2020, experts began speculating when Google would phase out its decade-old workhouse.

That time came in July 2023 when most UA properties ceased collecting new data. If you haven’t already, now’s the time to ensure your site has an active GA4 property, migrate any custom events, and capture needed data from UA properties before they are permanently deleted.

What’s the Difference Between UA and GA4?

Google Analytics 4 is based on event data whereas UA operated from multiple hit types (e.g. page hits, event hits, and ecommerce hits.) GA4 also provides measurement across platforms and devices “using multiple forms of identity” in anticipation of cookie-based tracking soon becoming less prevalent.

Another core difference from Universal Analytics is that GA4 does not currently have the “view” level many businesses utilized to segment different traffic types such as filtering out internal traffic from employees. It remains to be seen if this feature will be incorporated into GA4 at some point.

How to Set Up a Google Analytics 4 Property

If you used UA but didn’t proactively create a new GA4 property during the 2020-2023 transitional period, Google likely auto-generated a GA4 property from your UA installation. You’ll want to confirm new data is being processed properly though this automation did remove some of the heavy lifting for many businesses.

If you’re setting up a new property from scratch, GA4 will be the default option. Upon visiting, Google offers a simple walkthrough of creating the property and deploying it via Google Tag Manager or another method.

When Will Google Analytics UA Go Away?

Google halted the collection of new data in UA properties on July 1, 2023. Access to historical UA data has continued to be provided though Google recently announced it will begin turning off UA services on July 1, 2024.

If you require any historical data from UA, now’s the time to archive that information before the properties become inaccessible. Google’s support resources provide recommendations for exporting UA data.

What’s Next

If you haven’t already, create a GA4 property for your website. This is also an ideal time to connect GA4 data to other digital platforms your business may utilize such as Google Ads or Google Looker Studio reporting.

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Taylor Brown

Taylor is the owner & digital strategist of Go-To Man Marketing. With a passion for digital marketing and analytics, he's helped clients to grow their businesses for more than a decade.

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