This year Google released a notice that they will no longer process new data in Universal Analytics beginning July 1, 2023. Below is a notice you’ll receive if you sign into your Google Analytics account and have yet to configure the new Google Analytics 4 (GA4):
Why is Google enforcing a switch over to GA4?
Congress has been getting more involved with big tech and what data they can collect. The EU has strict laws (GDPR) of which protects the user and adds even more restrictions. It’s only a matter of time before the United States (and other Countries) follow suit in adopting their own laws. As such, Google, Facebook, and other big tech giants are now restricting specific data collection.
What happens to my old Universal Analytics data?
According to https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/11583528, Google announced that you will still have access to your data for at least 6 months, post July 1, 2023. After that, they will eventually retire Universal Analytics which has angered many people, including myself. I personally have built websites for over 20 years and I still have properties that were set up in 2005, which is when Analytics was first introduced. Losing all that historic data is sad, because it’s historic data. Sometimes I like to go way back and see the growth of a website over time, including conversions and other historical metrics and improvements. I’m a data guy (among many other web marketers) so it’s upsetting to see all this vanish.
Do I need to do anything?
Yes and No.
If you are an existing client of Kingsbury Web, we have already started the process in setting up Google Analytics 4 for you, all complimentary. We will configure the tracking code on your website to run both Universal Analytics & Google Analytics 4 simultaneously, that way we can compare metrics before switching over completely. This will also give us time to configure your new conversion tracking code and ensure metrics are being recorded properly.
Again, if you are an existing client of ours, you don't have to do anything. Otherwise, you'll have to manually configure GA4 on your own website.
Managed Google Ad Services and GA4
Any clients that have Google Ads services managed by us, we’ll migrate you over to GA4 as a top priority. Over the past few months we have noticed in the Google recommendations report a 6% optimization score adjustment for those who have not adopted GA4. This is important as your optimization score affects your cpc “cost per click”, ad ranking and conversions. We strive to keep your account as close to a 100% optimization score, so considering this will impact your account, we will be sure to migrate you over to GA4 right away.
Recommendations going forward
If you have important data you need to retain in Universal Analytics, we highly recommend generating reports and saving them to PDF format right away. Keep those files stored securely as Universal Analytics WILL go away sometime in late-2023.
If you are not a client and wish to do your own coding, we recommend setting up GA4 as soon as possible. This way you can get some historical data in GA4 when the time comes for the official cutoff.