What is the difference between Universal Analytics and GA4? Universal Analytics, the previous version of Google Analytics, was released in 2013. GA4 is the latest Google Analytics version, released in 2020, and offers several significant differences in terms of its event tracking, cross-device functionality, and machine learning capabilities.Data model: Universal Analytics uses a session-based data model, which tracks a series of user actions on a website as a single "session". GA4, on the other hand, uses an event-based data model, which tracks individual user actions, such as page views, clicks, and form submissions, as separate events. This allows GA4 to collect more detailed and granular data about user behaviour.Automatic event tracking: GA4 automatically tracks a wide range of events on your website without requiring manual configuration. This includes page views, clicks on buttons and links, form submissions, and other interactions. Universal Analytics, however, requires manual configuration to track events, which can be time-consuming and error-prone.Enhanced data collection: GA4 uses machine learning to collect and analyze data from various sources, including website interactions, app usage, and customer interactions across channels. This allows it to provide a more complete and accurate picture of customer behaviour and preferences. Universal Analytics is limited to tracking data from website interactions.Improved reporting and analysis: GA4 provides more detailed and customizable reports and new tools for analyzing customer behaviour and predicting future trends. It also includes new features such as "path analysis" and "funnels", which allow you to visualize and analyze the different steps users take on your website. Universal Analytics has more limited reporting and analysis capabilities.Improved integration with other Google products: GA4 is closely integrated with other Google products, such as Google Ads, Google Marketing Platform, and Google BigQuery, making it easier to analyze and optimize your marketing efforts across different channels. Universal Analytics has limited integration with other Google products.Data retention: GA4 includes new data retention controls that allow you to specify how long data is retained before it is automatically deleted. This can be useful for complying with data privacy regulations such as GDPR. Universal Analytics does not have this capability. What are the main features of GA4? GA4 has several new features that are not available in Universal Analytics, including:Automatic event tracking: GA4 automatically tracks events on your website, such as page views and clicks on buttons, without the need for manual configuration.Enhanced data collection: GA4 uses machine learning to collect and analyze data from a wide range of sources, including website interactions, app usage, and customer interactions across channels.Improved reporting and analysis: GA4 provides more detailed and customizable reports, as well as new tools for analyzing customer behaviour and predicting future trends.Improved integration with other Google products: GA4 is closely integrated with other Google products, such as Google Ads, Google Marketing Platform, and Google BigQuery, making it easier to analyze and optimize your marketing efforts across different channels.This article details the five key features Google Analytics 4 offers. Can I use Universal Analytics and GA4 together? Universal analytics will reach end of life on July 1, 2023, till then you can use GA4 and Universal Analytics together, so that you can make use of the exisiting reports and events created there. You need to update your GA4 instance with all the specific configurations before the UA stop taking data. Do I need to migrate from Universal Analytics to GA4? Universal Analytics will reach the end of life on July 1, 2023, at which point Google will stop collecting data on UA. If you are currently using Universal Analytics, it is recommended that you migrate to GA4 before the end-of-life date to ensure that the tracking on your website happens uninterruptedly, and to take advantage of the new features and functionality available in GA4. How do I migrate from Universal Analytics to GA4? To migrate from Universal Analytics to GA4, you will need to create a new property in your Google Analytics account and configure it to use the GA4 tracking code. You will then need to update any custom tracking code, integrations, reports and other configurations that you have set up in UA to GA4. Once you have completed the migration, you can retire your Universal Analytics property and tracking code. Please see the checklist we have prepared to assist you in the migration Will my existing data be lost if I migrate from Universal Analytics to GA4? The historical data will be available in Universal Analytics after the end-of-life for at least 6 months, and you can still use that in read-only mode. UA captures no new data after it reaches the end of its life. We recommend you set up GA4 now along with UA to track the website analytics in GA4 and then take steps to migrate the custom configurations and reports to GA4. Once UA reaches the end of life, you can remove the UA tracking code from your website.You should also take steps to export existing data before Google shuts down UA completely. For the free version of Google Universal Analytics, the BigQuery connection is not available by default. You may need a 3rd party connector to back up your historical data. Matomo offers a GA Data Export plugin to move your data to Matomo. We are using 360 Universal Analytics. Is there any difference? 360 Univeral Analytics users will get one more year to migrate to GA4. However, Google recommends that 360 users start the migration process as soon as possible to take advantage of the advanced features and capabilities of GA4. We are a SME, and using UA as it is. Ie we did not made any customization, just using the default reports. Do we have to prepare for anything? Users with default UA configuration have nothing to worry about; they can use the one-click creation of GA4 tags and set up the tracking code in their websites/apps.GA4 is a different product, and the user interface and reports have changed. There will be a learning curve to start using the new system.Please note that even if you migrate your UA to GA4, you still need to install the new GA4 tracking code in your website or tag manager and double-check the configuration to ensure that the data is being accurately tracked. Is there a Playbook or Checklist available to do the migration? Google offer comprehensive documentation to migrate from UA to GA4. We have documented the best practices we use to migrate UA to GA4. Please review this documentation and let us know if you need further assistance. Is there any professional support available for migrating from UA to GA4? Zyxware Technologies provide expert support throughout the migration process, from creating your GA4 property to mapping your existing GA data to your new GA4 property. Our team of experienced GA specialists can help ensure that your migration goes smoothly and that you get the most out of GA4. Please contact us if you need consulting with our GA expert. Will custom events created in GTM work in GA4? Yes, Custom events created in Google Tag Manager (GTM) will work in Google Analytics 4 (GA4), as long as you've set up your configuration tag to send your data to GA4. GA4 allows you to use existing triggers that you've used for Universal Analytics (UA) to send events to GA4. Is there a report available for session duration in GA4? GA4 focuses less on the idea of sessions and more on engagements. While there may not be an out-of-the-box report for session duration in GA4, you can build custom reports in the Explore section by playing around with metrics and dimensions. Is GA4 suitable to track multiple domains and subdomains? Yes, absolutely. All of your tracking in GTM can be sent to the same data stream. It's good to just have one data stream, but if you have your domain and your subdomains, you can send that to the one data stream if you want. What's the difference between data streams in GA4 and views in UA? A data stream is the source of your data, while a view was more like a filtering of data that was already there. In GA4, we have comparisons, which are kind of like a segment you can apply. We don't go into much detail on comparisons in this session, but we will later on. How can we evaluate user data for different platforms separately, web and app? If a user's data is captured against a single user ID, GA4 provides differentiation. While we have that consolidated idea of user ID, in the data model, we'll still always have those dimensions attached, or the parameters attached, saying, web, app, page view, screen view, where you can separate, or segment, or filter for just the web session or just the app session. Is there any mechanism to track invalid traffic? GA4 automatically detects bot traffic, so that will be excluded by default. In internal traffic, there is a parameter you can attach to traffic called Traffic Type (traffic_type). So whatever you're using for tagging, GTM, for example, you can have a parameter attached to a user with Traffic Type Internal. That will be excluded. Can we add additional parameters to the default page view event? Yes, you can set up automatically collected parameters that you want on all of your page views and use properties if that applies as well. However, these parameters will only apply once to the page you're on, so they should be page-level values. Can page path be an example of a high cardinality custom dimension? No, the page path is automatically collected and not high cardinality. You do not need to create a custom dimension for page_path. A high cardinality dimension isn't automatically collected, like article ID, which would be a custom dimension you must tell GA4 to collect and recognize as custom. Do I have to migrate to GA4? Is there any alternative options? If you are looking for a privacy-first website analytics platform, you should give a try to Matomo or Plausible based on your business need. Is it possible to create custom channel groups in Google Analytics 4? Yes! GA4 offers a new feature that allows you to create custom channel groups based on your own rules and criteria Migrating from Universal Analytics to GA4: A FAQ
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What is an SEO Audit? An SEO audit is a comprehensive analysis and evaluation of a website's search engine optimization. It involves reviewing and analyzing various elements of the website, including the content, technical infrastructure, and inbound and outbound links, to identify any issues or opportunities for improvement. An SEO audit aims to identify any problems or weaknesses in a website's SEO and provide recommendations for improving its performance in search engine results pages. Why is an SEO audit important? An SEO audit is important because it helps businesses and website owners identify and fix any issues or weaknesses in their search engine optimization. By conducting an SEO audit, businesses can improve their search engine rankings, increase their website traffic, and drive more qualified leads to their website. In addition, an SEO audit can help businesses stay up-to-date with the latest search engine algorithms and best practices, ensuring that their website is optimized for the best possible performance. What is included in an SEO audit? An SEO audit typically includes a review and analysis of a wide range of elements, including keyword research, on-page optimization, content quality and relevance, technical SEO, and link building. Keyword research involves identifying the most important and relevant keywords for a website and ensuring that they are being used effectively throughout the website's content. On-page optimization involves optimizing the various elements of a website's individual pages, such as the title tags and meta descriptions, to ensure that they are optimized for search engines. Content quality and relevance involves evaluating the quality and relevance of the content on a website to ensure that it is useful and informative for the target audience and helps to improve the website's search engine rankings. Technical SEO involves reviewing and optimizing the technical aspects of a website, such as its speed and mobile-friendliness, to ensure that it is easily crawlable and accessible by search engines. Link building involves acquiring high-quality links from other reputable websites to help improve the authority and credibility of a website in the eyes of search engines. How is an SEO audit conducted? An SEO audit is typically conducted using a combination of manual analysis and specialized tools. The process typically involves reviewing and analyzing various elements of a website, including its content, technical infrastructure, and inbound and outbound links. The audit may also involve conducting keyword research, analyzing the website's performance in search engine results pages, and reviewing the website's analytics data. Once the audit is complete, the results are typically compiled into a report that includes a list of recommendations for improvement and actionable items. What should you expect from an SEO audit? Businesses and website owners can expect to receive a report from an SEO audit that includes a detailed analysis of their website's search engine optimization and a list of recommendations for improvement. The report may also include a prioritization of the most important items to address, based on the potential impact on the website's search engine performance. In addition to the report, you may also receive a presentation or consultation from the audit team to discuss the findings and recommendations in more detail. You can expect to receive a clear and actionable plan for improving your website's SEO, along with guidance on how to implement the recommendations and track your progress over time. How do you use the results of an SEO audit? Once you have received the results of an SEO audit, it's important to review and act upon the recommendations provided. This may involve implementing the recommended changes to your website, such as optimizing your content or improving your website's technical infrastructure. It's also important to track your progress over time to ensure that the changes you've made are having the desired effect on your search engine rankings and website traffic. This may involve reviewing your analytics data and conducting regular follow-up audits to assess the effectiveness of the changes you've made. By continuously improving your website's SEO, you can stay ahead of your competition and ensure that your website is always optimized for the best possible performance. How often should an SEO audit be conducted? The frequency of SEO audits will depend on the size and complexity of your website, as well as the rate at which your industry and the search landscape are changing. As a general rule, it's a good idea to conduct an SEO audit at least once per year, and more frequently if your website is large or you are seeing significant changes in your search engine performance. Some businesses may choose to conduct an SEO audit more frequently, such as every six months or even quarterly, to ensure that their website is always optimized for the best possible performance. What tools are used to conduct an SEO audit? There are many tools that can be used to conduct an SEO audit, including both free and paid options. Some common tools that are often used for this purpose include Search Console, Google Analytics or other Analytics tools, SEMrush or Ahrefs or simlar tools, Screaming Frog or other page crawlers, PageSpeed Insights, GTmetrix, and the Structured Data Testing Tool. These tools can be used to conduct a variety of different types of analysis, including keyword research, on-page optimization, technical SEO, and link building. Some tools may focus on specific areas of SEO, while others offer a more comprehensive suite of features. It's important to choose the right tools for your specific needs and to use them in conjunction with manual analysis to get the most comprehensive and accurate results. Can an SEO audit be conducted in-house or does it require the services of an external agency? Both options are possible. Some businesses choose to conduct their own SEO audits in-house using a combination of tools and manual analysis. This can be a good option if you have a dedicated team of SEO professionals or if you have a smaller website with relatively simple SEO needs. However, if your website is large or complex, or if you don't have the in-house expertise to conduct an audit, it may be more effective to hire an external agency or consultant to conduct the audit for you. External agencies and consultants typically have a wealth of experience and specialized tools and techniques that can help to identify and address any issues or opportunities for improvement that may not be obvious to an in-house team. How long does an SEO audit typically take? The length of time it takes to complete an SEO audit will depend on the size and complexity of your website, as well as the level of detail and coverage you want to achieve. The first level report with the help of tools can be generated with in an hour, but the key value comes from the detailed analysis done by the SEO expert. For a detailed analysis report, smaller websites with less than 50 pages, it may take anywhere from a few days to a week to complete. For larger websites with hundreds or thousands of pages, an audit may take several weeks or longer. It's also important to note that the actual implementation of the recommendations from an SEO audit can take additional time, depending on the resources and priorities of your business. Some businesses may choose to implement the recommendations gradually over time, while others may prioritize a more rapid implementation. Can an SEO audit improve my website's search engine rankings? Yes, an SEO audit is an effective way to identify opportunities to improve a website's search engine rankings. By identifying and addressing any issues or weaknesses in a website's SEO, businesses and website owners can improve their search engine rankings, increase their website traffic, and drive more qualified leads to their website. It's important to note, however, that an SEO audit is just one component of a comprehensive search engine optimization strategy. To achieve lasting improvements in your search engine rankings, it's important to implement the recommendations from an audit and to continuously monitor and optimize your website's SEO over time. How do I prioritize the recommendations from an SEO audit? There are a few key steps you can take to prioritize the recommendations from an SEO audit: Identify any technical issues that could impact your search engine rankings, and prioritize those items for immediate attention. Look for opportunities for quick wins, such as optimizing low-hanging fruit like title tags and meta descriptions. Consider the resources required to implement each recommendation. Prioritize items that will require the effort of your development team or will take longer to implement. Focus on recommendations that are most likely to improve your organic performance, such as improving your keyword rankings, conversion rate, or website traffic. Why does a website need an SEO audit? There are many reasons why a website might need an SEO audit. Some common reasons include: To identify and fix on-page errors that could be affecting the website's search engine rankings. To identify the competitors of the website and understand their strategies. To identify any gaps in the website's keyword coverage and identify opportunities to improve its search engine rankings. To identify opportunities to improve the performance of individual pages on the website. To identify any gaps in the website's content and identify opportunities to improve its search engine rankings. Can an SEO audit help improve my website's conversion rate? SEO Audit report will not help in improving the conversion rate, but if the recommendations are implemented properly, it can improve the performance of the website for Search Engines. By improving the website's search engine rankings and increasing its visibility to potential customers, an SEO audit can help drive more qualified traffic to the website and increase the likelihood of conversions. In addition, an SEO audit can help identify opportunities to optimize the website's content and design to better meet the needs and expectations of the target audience, which can also help to improve the conversion rate. Is an SEO audit different from a website audit? While an SEO audit and a website audit may overlap in some areas, they are generally focused on different aspects of a website. An SEO audit is specifically focused on evaluating and improving a website's search engine optimization, while a website audit is typically broader in scope and may include areas such as usability, accessibility, security, and performance. A website audit may include an evaluation of a website's SEO, but it is likely to include other areas as well. How do I know if my website needs an SEO audit? There are a few key signs that your website might benefit from an SEO audit: Your search engine rankings are declining or stagnant. Your website traffic is declining or stagnant. You are not seeing the level of conversions you expect from your website. You are not sure if your website is optimized for search engines. You have made significant changes to your website Are there any legal or ethical considerations to be aware of when conducting an SEO audit? Yes, there are a few legal and ethical considerations to be aware of when conducting an SEO audit: Be sure to adhere to all relevant laws and regulations, such as the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in the European Union and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA) in the United States. Avoid using any black hat or unethical techniques that could potentially harm your website or the websites of others. Respect the intellectual property rights of others, and ensure that you have the necessary permissions and licenses to use any content or materials that are not your own. Make sure to fully disclose any conflicts of interest that may arise during the audit process. Consider obtaining the consent of website visitors before collecting and using their personal data for the purposes of an audit. Understanding the SEO Audit Process: Common Questions Answered
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