The New Google Analytics & Why it Matters

Google Analytics is one of the most important tools for nonprofit marketers to understand website visitors and their behavior. From ecommerce tracking to funnel visualization, Google Analytics provides marketers with all of the data they could possibly need to know how marketing materials are performing. You can even link your Google Ads Grant account! But the system is changing a bit this fall.

On October 14th, Google released a “new, more intelligent” Analytics tool that builds on their App + Web analytics tools. Powered by machine learning, this new tool will automatically provide insights into your data, use cross-device tracking, and fill in the gaps created by market privacy standards. It also has an even deeper integration with your Google Ads account.

What’s new?

The new Analytics is supposed to gather data that is more customer centric, as opposed to splitting data by device or platform. This means you’ll be able to better understand customer behavior across their life cycle. There will also be more simplified reporting based on the part of the customer journey you’re interested in. This feature will be key to how you can best serve your website visitors based on where they are in their journey with your organization.

What we’re excited about

User engagement data. We have been talking about engagement for a while as the most important phase in a user’s journey on a website, so we are so excited to see that Google built this metric into the new Analytics. Engagement is a critical metric, but not always easy to determine. We even have it built into our 5 Impact Multipliers! To put it simply, the more engaged people are with your content – and organization as a whole – the more likely they are to convert and retain. Google says that the new Analytics will put the focus on users – and their value to your organization – instead of traffic.

So what do I do next?

Google is encouraging organizations to create a new Google Analytics 4 property alongside their existing Google Analytics account. This will allow you to begin gathering data on the new platform while keeping the current Google Analytics implementation intact. So for now, we recommend getting a new Google Analytics 4 account, but not stressing about switching your website over completely or losing any data.

Over the next few weeks, the Five Q team will dive into the new Analytics to see if the data Google promises lives up to the hype. Stay tuned for another blog post by the end of the month giving our recommendations moving forward!