Have you seen notices in your Google Analytics account telling you to go through with a Google Analytics 4 upgrade? Wondering if you should do it, and why?
Google Analytics 4 is Google’s newest version of their wildly popular website analytics tool. It’s quite a bit different from their previous version, Universal Analytics. So, it can be pretty intimidating to think about going through with the upgrade to Google Analytics 4.
At MonsterInsights, we recommend that you do upgrade, but with an important exception: keep using your Universal Analytics property alongside the new one.
In this article, we’ll take a look at:
How to Complete a Google Analytics 4 Upgrade
If you do have a Universal Analytics property and you’d like to add a GA4 property, follow these simple steps:
You can go through the process of upgrading to a GA4 property pretty easily by following Google’s Setup Assistant. To access the assistant, head to the Admin cog then GA4 Setup Assistant in the middle Property column.
Next, click the blue Get Started button.
Then, click the Create Property button. The last option will either be checked or not based on which version of the tracking tag you currently have installed.
That’s it! You now have a Google Analytics 4 property in addition to your Universal Analytics property. Pretty easy, right?
If you don’t have a Universal Analytics account at all and you’d like to set up GA4, read How to Add Google Analytics 4 to WordPress (Best Way).
Why You Should Upgrade to GA4
Google Analytics 4 is the next generation of web analytics, and it’s very smart. Google is really working hard to bring automated insights, upgraded event tracking and more to all its users.
Also, there won’t be any further improvements made to Universal Analytics. The Google team is working on Google Analytics 4 and won’t be releasing anything new on the old platform.
That said, there are definitely some things they’re busy working out, and GA4 doesn’t yet have all the features that Universal Analytics does. It also doesn’t have any of your historical data – it’s like starting over from scratch with new data. That makes it hard to recommend as a stand-alone solution.
So, what we recommend here at MonsterInsights is having both a Universal Analytics property and a Google Analytics 4 property. That way, you’re building up some data in your new GA4 property, while still keeping all the features from Universal Analytics.
WordPress Users Can Set Up Dual Tracking
If your website is on WordPress, you can actually connect both your Universal Analytics and Google Analytics 4 properties to your WordPress dashboard. That way, you can keep aspects of Universal Analytics that no longer exist in GA4 (like bounce rate) while also feeding data into your GA4 property.
To do that, use MonsterInsights.
MonsterInsights is the best Google Analytics plugin for WordPress. It allows you to easily connect your WordPress site with Google Analytics (both Universal Analytics and GA4), so you can view all the data that matters most right in your WordPress dashboard.
Plus, with the click of a button, you can set up sophisticated tracking features such as event tracking, eCommerce tracking, form tracking, custom dimension tracking, outbound link tracking, and more.
When you’re setting up MonsterInsights, you’ll see a box that lets you add your dual tracking profile:
MonsterInsights is the only WordPress analytics plugin with dual tracking capabilities!
For a full tutorial on getting started with MonsterInsights and dual tracking, read How to Add Google Analytics 4 to WordPress (Best Way).
We hope our article on Google Analytics 4 helped you make the decision that’s right for your website. For a deeper dive into Google Analytics 4 and its differences from Universal Analytics, read What is Google Analytics 4? Should You Use It?.