GA4 Events: Quick Start Guide for Beginners

GA4 Events: A Quick-Start Guide for Beginners

Curious about GA4 events? Have questions about what they are, how they work, how to track them, and maybe even how to create them?

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) tracks users’ interactions with your website as events. While this is a useful way to figure out how people are using your site, it’s a little bit tricky to understand when you’re a beginner.

So, in this article, we’ll tackle all the questions you might have about GA4 events, event tracking, event parameters, conversion events, and more.

Let’s get started with the basics.

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GA4 Events Video Walkthrough

What Are GA4 Events?

A GA4 event measures a user’s interactions with your site. Many GA4 events are clicks, but they can also be pageviews, scrolls, and more.

So, when a user lands on your website, they trigger the session start event and a page view event. If they click to another page, that triggers another page view event. If your Google Analytics has no data on that user having visited your site before, a first visit event will also fire.

There are four categories of events in Google Analytics 4. Those are:

  1. Automatically Collected Events – Events automatically collected by Google Analytics out of the box, like page views, session start, user engagement, and first visit.
  2. Enhanced Measurement Events – These are optional events that are built into GA4 that you can turn on if you wish. They include outbound link click tracking, site search tracking, video engagement, form submits, scroll tracking, and more.
  3. Recommended Events – These are events that don’t come with Google Analytics initially that Google recommends you set up. Many of them are for measuring eCommerce clicks and transactions.
  4. Custom Events – These are events that you can set up on your own based on interactions you want to track on your website.

Let’s dive a little deeper into some of these event categories.

What Are GA4 Enhanced Measurement Events?

There are some events that just about every website might want to track. So, to help users out, the Google Analytics team created a list of Enhanced Measurement events that can help you track a few things beyond the standard, automatically collected events.

The idea is that you can just switch these on and Google Analytics will start to track them for you.

Enhanced Measurement in GA4

While this is an awesome idea in theory and some of the event tracking works well, some of thm could use some improvement.

For instance, some folks have noticed inconsistencies in the form tracking, scroll tracking only tells you if a user gets all the way to the bottom of your pages, video engagement tracking only works for YouTube videos, and you can’t add more file extensions to track for the file downloads.

Using WordPress? The best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress, MonsterInsights, can help you track all of these events and more with a few clicks! Find out how.

What Are GA4 Recommended Events?

Recommended events are events that don’t come out of the box with GA4, but that they suggest you set up.

The list mostly consists of eCommerce events such as add_to_cart, purchase, and refund. You can also set up events like sign_up, begin_tutorial, and share.

If your website or app is a game, there’s also a whole list of recommended events for those.

Setting up events on your own is a pretty complex process using a tool like Google Tag Manager. If you do need to set up events manually, we suggest getting help from an experienced professional.

Using WordPress? You can set up all the eCommerce events you need with the click of a button! Just use MonsterInsights.

GA4 Events vs. Conversions

As you’ve seen so far, there’s a pretty big list of events that you can track in Google Analytics 4. They can be used to see what your users are clicking on, how they’re interacting with content, how far they’re scrolling, steps they’re taking during the shopping process, and more.

To measure your site’s success, though, you need more than events! You need to track conversions.

While events tell you everything about how users interacted with your site and your content, you need to tell Analytics which of those events are the most important to you. Which ones tell you that someone has converted from a visitor to a lead or customer?

Choose your most important events, like a form submission or purchase, and mark them as a conversion in Google Analytics under Admin » Events.

Mark an event as a conversion in GA4

Then, within your reports, you’ll see a conversion rate and your total number of conversions. This can really help you determine where your best, most likely to convert traffic is coming from, what pages they’re landing on, and more.

Conversions in GA4

The Best Way to Track GA4 Events

Tracking GA4 events can be tricky, but with the right tool, you can make it much easier.

If your website is built on WordPress, you can set up tons of events just by installing the MonsterInsights plugin.

MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress. It allows you to easily connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics so you can view all the data that matters most right in your WordPress dashboard. You can also instantly set up all of your most important GA4 events with a couple clicks.

MonsterInsights Home Dashboard

Simply install MonsterInsights and use our addons to track:

  • eCommerce events
  • Downloads
  • Form submissions
  • Video interactions
  • Average scroll depth
  • Outbound links
  • Affiliate links
  • And more!

Not only will you be able to track all of those events, but you’ll also see report data right inside your WordPress dashboard.

For a tour of MonsterInsights, check out Your Ultimate Guide to MonsterInsights Dashboard Reports.

We hope our article helped you learn all about GA4 events. Want to track custom button click events? Check out How to Set Up Google Analytics Custom Event Tracking.

Not using MonsterInsights yet? What are you waiting for?

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