This article is part of the Universal Analytics to Google Analytics 4 migration guide. See the migration guide table of contents.

[UA→GA4] Migration reference

Identify and set up the Google Analytics 4 functionality you need to migrate

This article maps Universal Analytics functionality to the corresponding Google Analytics 4 functionality. To find the features you're currently using in your Universal Analytics property, browse the table of contents or search the article (using Ctrl+F or Command+F on your keyboard).

Table of contents

Planning

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Account structure


Measure cross-domain sessions

Use cross-domain measurement to unify Google Analytics sessions across different websites, such as payment portals and other associated sites.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Set up cross-domain measurement on different websites by modifying the Universal Analytics snippet or by updating the Google Analytics Settings variable with Google Tag Manager. To ensure that traffic coming from enabled sites isn't designated as referral, you also need to add measured domains to the referral exclusion list. Set up cross-domain measurement via the Admin page: Property > Data Streams > Web > Configure tag settings > Configure your domains. Identify unwanted referrals in data streams via each stream's settings.

Migration: Things to know

For your Universal Analytics property, you configure cross-domain measurement via code (either in the source code through analytics.js or gtag.js, or via Google Tag Manager). For your Google Analytics 4 property, you do this via the Admin page.

Measure across subdomains

Subdomains that represent a different grouping of pages for a particular primary domain (e.g., blog.website.com, news.website.com) can all be measured in the same Google Analytics property. Both Universal Analytics and Google Analytics 4 properties do this automatically.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Identical page paths in different subdomains are displayed as one page in the Behavior reports. These can be separated by implementing a view filter to prepend the hostname to the page path dimension. Identical page paths in different subdomains are displayed as one page in reports. These can be separated by using report customization to have the hostname included in the Pages and screens report, at the cost of being able to bring a secondary dimension into the report.

Configure roll-up reporting for separate domains

Roll-Up Reporting allows reporting and analysis on aggregated data across different Google Analytics properties that may span across different websites.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.

The Google Analytics 360 Support team creates Roll-Up Properties. Once created, a Roll-Up Property is sourced by other Google Analytics 360 properties.

You have the option to create your own "manual" form of Roll-Up Properties by deploying the same Universal Analytics tracking ID across multiple domains, keeping in mind that:

  • the data collection limit of 10m hits per month still applies to a non-360 property.
  • users aren't deduplicated across domains.
This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.

If you are an Administrator or Editor for your 360 account, you can create roll-up properties.

Learn more about Google Analytics 4 roll-up properties.

As with Universal Analytics, you can create your own "manual" form of roll-up properties by deploying the same tag ID across multiple domains, keeping in mind that users aren't deduplicated across domains.

Migration: Things to know

Roll-Up Reporting is only available for Universal Analytics 360 properties and isn't yet available for Google Analytics 4 properties.

Create a property

A property contains the Google Analytics reports and data for your website and/or app. The reports and user interface that you see vary according to what kind of property you are viewing. A Universal Analytics property has different reports than a Google Analytics 4 property.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create a new property in the Admin page of your Universal Analytics account, in the Property column. Click Show advanced options and switch on the Create a new Universal Analytics property option to get started. Create a new property in the Admin page of your Google Analytics account, in the Property column.

Migration: Things to know

When creating a new property, the default property type is Google Analytics 4, but you can still create a new Universal Analytics property if needed.

Create a data stream

You create a data stream for each website and mobile app that you want to track within a particular Google Analytics 4 property.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
N/A for Universal Analytics Create individual data streams for web and app in the Property column, under Data Streams.

Migration: Things to know

"Data stream" is a new concept in Google Analytics 4.

Programmatically manage the configuration of Google Analytics

Automated account management requires a method to programmatically access Google Analytics.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Use the Management API to programmatically adjust the configuration of your Universal Analytics accounts/properties.

Access the API through existing libraries for common programing languages or directly through HTTP requests.
Use the Admin API to programmatically adjust the configuration of your Google Analytics 4 accounts/properties.

Access the API through existing libraries for common programing languages or directly through HTTP requests.
The API is currently in an early preview version and is subject to unannounced changes that may break your configuration.

Programmatically create and view Google Analytics reports

Automated reporting requires a method to programmatically access Google Analytics.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Use the Reporting API to programmatically access reporting data from your Universal Analytics properties.

Access the API through existing libraries for common programing languages or directly through HTTP requests.
Use the Data API to programmatically access reporting data from your Google Analytics 4 properties.

Access the API through existing libraries for common programing languages or directly through HTTP requests.
The API is in a beta version. While no changes that might break your configuration are expected, any automation created before the full release will have limited support.

Migration: Things to know

Read Migrating to the Google Analytics Data API v1 for instructions on how to transition your existing setup to the new API.


Remove unwanted data

Not all data sent to Google Analytics will always be in the correct format or from a source you want to collect data from. In these cases, you need to filter the data coming into Google Analytics.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create reporting view filters to modify the data coming into your Universal Analytics views. There are many different types of filters available that allow for the replacement, modification, and removal of data as it comes into Google Analytics.

Google Analytics 4 subproperties, a 360 feature, are designed to give you the capabilities of views in the form of fully functioning properties. Subproperties get their data from 360 properties and constitute a full or partial subset of that data depending on how you configure them.

Create data filters to remove unwanted data as it comes into your Google Analytics 4 properties. You can create filters to remove both developer and internal traffic. There are also other Google Analytics 4 features that are similar to Universal Analytics view-related features.

Migration: Things to know

In Universal Analytics, you create filters at the view level. In Google Analytics 4, which doesn't have the concept of a view, you create data filters at the property level.

Transform data and maintain data hygiene

Remove extraneous data and consolidate fragmented values (such as URL variations) that have the same meaning for the purpose of analytics.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Universal Analytics has various types of filters that change data in different ways, from including or excluding certain types of data, to changing casing, to completely replacing the formatting of data that's already been collected into a different format. Some examples include custom filters (like lowercase and uppercase), search-and-replace filters, and Advanced filters. In Google Analytics 4, you can modify and create events via the user interface to standardize event names and parameters based on specific conditions, including correcting and/or updating events. Other types of filters allow you to include or exclude certain traffic types, like developer traffic or internal traffic.

Exclude internal traffic

Filtering out data from development environments and internal users is important for making sure that your data is from live users in a production setting.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4

In Universal Analytics, you normally exclude internal traffic from your main reporting views by applying a view filter based on IP address.

As a best practice, apply filters to a test view before applying them to any main working views.

In Google Analytics 4, two settings work in conjunction to exclude internal traffic.

First, if you click into your web data stream and then go to Configure tag settings > Define internal traffic, you can define an internal traffic_type value based on IP address. You can specify other values for traffic_type as well, for instance, internal-headquarters.

When you've defined one or more traffic_type values for internal IP addresses, you can then use data filters (Admin > Data Settings > Data Filters). Data filters allow you to exclude (or include) traffic corresponding to the internal traffic_type value(s) from your processed data capture in the Google Analytics 4 property. When you create a Google Analytics 4 property, Analytics creates a default filter for internal traffic. That filter defines internal traffic as any traffic that includes the event parameter traffic_type with the value of internal.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 has three different filter modes to allow you to test out filters before applying them to production data. These modes include "Active", "Testing", and "Inactive", which dictate whether changes to data are temporary or permanent.

Exclude developer/debug traffic from your final data capture

You normally want to keep any data originating on your development environments separate from production data.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4

In Universal Analytics, excluding developer traffic is often thought of as excluding traffic that occurred in a development environment, such as dev.mysite.com.

You can configure filters based on hostname or subdirectory to exclude or include development website data as part of your Google Analytics data capture.

Alternatively, you can use a separate property for your development site, but you need to configure the property similarly to the property that is tracking your production site.

In Google Analytics 4, you can configure a data filter to exclude traffic that is sent in debug mode. Traffic sent in debug mode is visible in DebugView.

Migration: Things to know

The ability to see debug traffic in DebugView, and to easily exclude debug traffic from your final data, was merged into Google Analytics 4 from Google Analytics for Firebase and is now available for web data streams in addition to app data streams. You can also enable debug mode for your Google Analytics 4 tags in Google Tag Manager by entering GTM Preview and Debug mode. In this way, you can take advantage of DebugView in Google Analytics 4 as well as a separate debug tab or panel for all tagging that you have applied to GTM.

Filter bots

Filtering out known bots and spiders can help maintain the quality and relevance of your Google Analytics data.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Enable bot filtering under View Settings. Google Analytics 4 automatically excludes known bots.

Migration: Things to know

In Google Analytics 4, there isn't a setting to enable/disable this feature. Bot filtering is automatically enabled, and the list of known bots and spiders is maintained by the Interactive Advertising Bureau.

Replace specific phrases in the data sent to Google Analytics

Data sources are not always consistent, and the same data point can come into Google Analytics in different forms. In these cases, you need to be able to transform data to the correct format.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create Search and Replace Filters in your Universal Analytics views to search for phrases and replace them with the desired values. These searches can be based on exact phrases or pattern matching. Create Event Modifications in your Google Analytics 4 data streams to replace event parameters as they are processed into Google Analytics. The conditions for this replacement can be based on any number of the parameters on the incoming event, and multiple parameters can be replaced at once.

Exclude specific domain referrals as acquisition sources

When unwanted referrals come into Google Analytics, such as from third-party payment tools, they can override the attribution of previous sources, such as paid ads.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Add domains to the list of referral exclusions in your Universal Analytics property settings to remove referrals from the defined domains from all views in the property. Once you do this, clickthroughs from those hostnames or domains won't be considered referrals and won't start new sessions when sessions are already in progress. Add domains to the list of unwanted referrals in your Google Analytics 4 data streams to have referrals from the defined domains removed from data coming into Google Analytics. Once you do this, clickthroughs from those hostnames or domains won't be considered referrals and won't start new sessions when sessions are already in progress.

See the terms that users enter in your own site search, plus post-search performance.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
If the URL of your internal search-results pages includes the search term as a query parameter (e.g., q=hiking-boots), you can configure your view settings to parse the search term and populate the Site Search reports. If the URL of your internal search results pages includes the search term as a query parameter (e.g., q=hiking-boots), you can configure the enhanced measurement settings in your web data stream to parse the search term.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 does not include built-in Site Search reports.

Data collection

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Events and parameters


Automatically capture a set of core user interactions in addition to pageviews

Measure common interactions (such as offsite links, site download, and video interactions) without additional coding or tagging.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Google Universal Analytics doesn't offer automatic event tracking. Set up event measurement by adding code to your site or app. Enhanced measurement is enabled by default when you create a Google Analytics 4 web data stream. To enable or disable the various enhanced measurement options, go to Admin > Property > Data Streams > Web.

Migration: Things to know

To measure custom events that overlap with enhanced measurement events but require additional data points not available through the enhanced measurement events (e.g., custom parameters), implement a custom event/parameter solution and disable the corresponding enhanced measurement event. For example, if you want more customized scroll tracking, disable the enhanced measurement version.

Take advantage of predefined event taxonomies and report mappings

Sending data to Google Analytics using predefined taxonomies allows Google Analytics to populate certain pre-built reports and also stay within some product limitations.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Universal Analytics has a predefined Enhanced Ecommerce taxonomy that you can use to populate a variety of built-in Ecommerce reports. More generally, event capture accepts the event category, action, and label dimensions but doesn't otherwise offer guidelines on specific event naming or capture any events by default (with the exception of pageview hits, which are recorded with the default snippet and are considered a separate hit type from events). Google Analytics 4 has a tiered approach to event and parameter tracking, starting from automatically collected events and parameters, recommended events and parameters, and your own custom events and parameters.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 captures a wide assortment of predefined events and event parameters. It also outlines a taxonomy of recommended events and event parameters. The predefined events and parameters offer two advantages over custom events and parameters:

  • In the case of the predefined online-sales taxonomy, Google Analytics 4 uses the recommended events and parameters that you send in your implementation to populate the Monetization reports (Monetization Overview and E-commerce Purchases reports).
  • Recommended event parameters that you map as custom dimensions and metrics don't count against the limit of 50 custom dimensions and 50 custom metrics per property that you can map from custom event parameters.

Remove query parameters from your URLs

Query parameters that don't affect page content can split metrics for individual pages into multiple buckets. Removing these parameters as they come into Google Analytics can improve data quality.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Add the unwanted query parameters to the "Exclude URL Query Parameters" in View Settings. This removes all instances of these parameters from your pages.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

User identity


Unify user-level reporting across devices and data streams

Unifying users across devices and data streams provides a more accurate count of users and enables attribution, behavioral insights, and audience building across multiple sessions that would otherwise be fragmented.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
You can unify users and populate cross-device reporting in Universal Analytics by populating the designated userId field for users who are authenticated to your website. If you enable Google signals, users who are authenticated to Google will also be unified in your reporting. You can enable user-level reporting across devices and across web, iOS, and Android data streams in Google Analytics 4 by populating the designated userId field for users who are authenticated to your website/mobile app. As a secondary step, activate Google signals, which applies to users who are logged into Google at the time they access your website/app.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 provides two enhancements to cross-device and cross-stream reporting:

  • First, Google Analytics 4 provides an identity resolution fallback of userId, Google Signals, and device ID (meaning cookie or mobile app ID) within the same reports.
  • Because web and mobile data streams in Google Analytics 4 use the same data model, reporting is cohesive across data streams, and user overlap across web and mobile shows up in the Tech > Overview report.

Populate User-ID for authenticated users

By default, Google Analytics takes advantage of device ID (meaning browser cookie in the case of a website, or app instance id in the case of a mobile app) to associate multiple sessions with the same user. However, this dependency limits the ability to associate the same users across multiple devices. Populating User-ID for authenticated users allows you to bypass the dependency on cookies or app instance ID for associating multiple sessions with the same user, on the same device and data stream, or across devices and data streams.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Use User-ID to associate multiple sessions (and any activity within those sessions) with a unique ID. With it, you can get a more accurate user count, analyze the signed-in user experience, and get access to the Cross Device reports. If your business generates user IDs, implement User-ID for cross-platform, cross-device reporting in Analytics.

Migration: Things to know

User-ID in Universal Analytics and Google Analytics for Firebase primarily serves to unify sessions across different devices but within the same type of platform (meaning unifying a website visitor across desktop and mobile web, or a mobile app user on an Android phone and an Android tablet). In Google Analytics 4, User-ID also serves to meaningfully unify users across platforms/data streams, meaning a website visitor on desktop who also uses your app on an iPhone. The unified data model for web and mobile app in Google Analytics 4 can provide cohesive reporting and analysis for authenticated users across platforms.

Ecommerce


Measure ecommerce-related interactions

Provide data on the behavior of users in your ecommerce funnel, and enable insights on performance.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Measure ecommerce activities by implementing either standard or enhanced ecommerce events. Both allow you to take advantage of predefined reports in Google Analytics which give you insights into to your users' behavior.

Standard ecommerce reporting focuses solely on the final transaction, while Enhanced Ecommerce reporting expands on this and allows you to measure all steps of your ecommerce funnel.
Measure ecommerce activities by implementing the predefined online-sales events. These event automatically feed into the Google Analytics 4's Monetization reports and provide the ability to measure all steps of your ecommerce funnel.

Mobile apps and Firebase


Measure Android or iOS mobile-app interactions and integrate with web data

Understand user interactions within Android and iOS apps, as well as app lifecycle events such as first_open.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
The Google Services SDK for Android and iOS remains available for Google Analytics 360 accounts, but the Firebase SDK is the recommended approach for instrumenting Google Analytics tracking in Android and iOS apps. The Android and iOS data streams that you set up to populate Firebase can also directly populate your Google Analytics 4 property through the Firebase integration.

Migration: Things to know

The iOS and Android data streams that you configure for a Firebase project can also populate a Google Analytics 4 property. Similarly, when you create an iOS or Firebase data stream in Google Analytics 4, a new Firebase project is created. For this reason, if you've already created mobile-app data streams in a Firebase project, it's critical to initiate the integration from the Firebase project rather than from the Google Analytics 4 property.

If you've used Google Analytics for Firebase, you'll find the data model and several of the implementation concepts in Google Analytics 4 quite familiar.

If you are a Universal Analytics 360 customer who has continued to use the Google Services SDKs to collect app data in a Universal Analytics property, then you have two options to set up data collection in a Google Analytics 4 property:

Data Import and Measurement Protocol


Expand your data capture

Use Data Import to upload data in Google Analytics, in addition to the principal data capture through gtag.js, analyitcs.js, or the Android or iOS SDKs for Google Analytics.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Data Import lets you upload data from external sources and combine it with data you collect via Universal Analytics. You can then use Universal Analytics to organize and analyze all of your data in ways that better reflect your business. Data Import lets you upload data from external sources and join it with your Google Analytics 4 data so you can analyze a single body of information about your business.
Migration: Things to know

Data import in Google Analytics is sometimes expressed as dimension widening in the sense that, in most cases, you populate one or more additional dimension values against a dimension that has already been populated, such as page category, product classifications, or campaign parameters against a page dimension, product ID, or campaign ID.

Send data to Google Analytics from a non-web or Android/iOS mobile-app environment through Measurement Protocol

Use Measurement Protocol to directly send hits to the Google Analytics servers through basic HTTP requests from any programmable, networked environment, such as an app running on Windows Mobile, a point of sale or CRM, or a building directory running on a kiosk.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Use Measurement Protocol for Universal Analytics to directly send HTTP requests in order to send data to a property. Use Measurement Protocol for Google Analytics 4 to directly send HTTP requests in order to send data to a Google Analytics property.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 provides a safeguard against Measurement Protocol spam. Measurement Protocol in Google Analytics 4 is required to include an api_secret key that's visible only in the Google Analytics 4 data-stream configuration, which should largely eliminate Measurement Protocol spam.

Property setup

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Goals, conversions, and funnels


Measure a pageview (or screenview) as a conversion

Thank you or confirmation pages for many types of submissions are typically good candidates for conversion measurement.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create a destination goal to measure a specific pageview as a conversion.

In Google Analytics 4, a specific page is indicated by the page_location parameter that is passed with the page_view event. Conversions in Google Analytics 4 are based only on event_name and not other event parameters, but you can modify and create events via the user interface in Google Analytics 4 to create a new event, such as confirmation_page_viewed, based on a page_view event and a page_location parameter, and then mark that new event as a conversion.

As an alternate approach, you can send Google Analytics 4 events from your conversion pages using gtag.js or Google Tag Manager and designate that event as a conversion.

Migration: Things to know

Use the goals migration tool to automatically migrate most destination and event goals.

Learn how to map Universal Analytics goals to Google Analytics 4 conversions.

Measure a user interaction as a conversion

Many types of user interactions, such as file downloads or video views, are good candidates for conversion tracking.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create an event goal to measure specific user interactions, indicated by any combination of Event Category, Action, and Label, as conversions. In Google Analytics 4, use conversion events to track conversions. In the user interface, you can mark an existing event as a conversion or create a new conversion event based on parameters of a named event. For example, to track conversions based on downloads of a file, such as annual-report.pdf: create a new event triggered by file_download events that have a file_name parameter of annual-report.pdf, and mark the new event as a conversion.

Migration: Things to know

Use the goals migration tool to automatically migrate most destination and event goals.

Conversions in Google Analytics 4 can only be based on event names and not on other parameters. However you can define new events, either in your site code or via the user interface, when the parameters you specify have certain values, such as a page_view with a specific file_location. You can then mark this new event as a conversion. The Destination goals article shows you how to do this.

Measure overall engagement as a conversion

For certain types of website or mobile app experiences, particularly in the content publisher realm, success is measured by overall duration or depth of engagement as much as by specific interactions.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Universal Analytics goals are often considered in terms of specific pageviews or user interactions, but you can also measure engagement goals based on Session duration or Pages/screens per session.

Google Analytics 4 automatically generates the user_engagement event when the session lasts more than ten seconds, includes two or more pageviews, or contains a conversion event. Google Analytics 4 also uses this event to calculate the Average engagement time, Engaged users per session, and Average engagement time per session metrics.

You can also create audiences (and segments in Explorations) based on session count and engagement time, which you can then apply to your reports.

While Universal Analytics duration goals can't be replicated in GA4 you can replicate goals based on pages/screens per session. See [UA→GA4] Engagement goals to learn more.

Migration: Things to know

Universal Analytics destination and event goals can map to Google Analytics 4 conversion events, but if you need to include an event parameter value in your conversion definition, you'll need to first generate a custom event that you can then designate as a conversion event.

The duration and pages/screens per session goals in Universal Analytics correspond to the user engagement events and metrics that are surfaced automatically in Google Analytics 4, as well as the segments and audiences that you can create and apply to your reporting.

Create a funnel visualization for a conversion process

A funnel is an essential data visualization technique for identifying drop-off in critical conversion flows.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
In Universal Analytics, you can create a funnel for any destination goal, which populates the Funnel Visualization and Goal Flow reports and generates the Abandonment rate and Funnel conversion rate metrics.

In Universal Analytics 360, you also have the option to create a custom funnel or Funnel Analysis report.

Google Analytics 4 funnel explorations offer a number of advantages over goal funnels in Universal Analytics, including:

  • Available to all users
  • Apply to historical data
  • Support for open or closed sequences
  • Session or User based

Learn more about macro / micro conversions & funnels.

Migration: Things to know

In Google Analytics 4, funnel explorations are available to all free and enterprise users. Funnels in GA4 offer significant advantages over funnels in Universal Analytics.

Understand the flow of user interactions

Identify potential design issues, friction, and corresponding optimization opportunities based on the sequences of user interactions.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
The Behavior flow and Events flow reports demonstrate the flow between user interactions and don't require any configuration apart from the pageviews and events that you're capturing. The path exploration technique provides streamlined path reporting based on page title, screen class, or screen name.

Migration: Things to know

With the configurable path exploration, Google Analytics 4 provides a great new benefit to free and enterprise users. Path explorations are easier to interpret and act upon than the Behavior flow and Events flow reports in Universal Analytics. Path explorations also span multiple sessions, which allows you to observe flows for the same users across devices and web/mobile data streams.

The option for defining either a starting point or an endpoint for path exploration represents another key benefit of this report format.

Note that URL-based dimensions such as page_location aren't available as a configuration option for path explorations, so page-level pathing in Google Analytics 4 reports depend on page title as a dimension.

Audiences and segments


Create an audience to segment users for marketing, testing, and personalization

Efficient engagement of users for various campaigns and personalization requires a method to group together users who match certain behaviors and demographics.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create audiences via Google Analytics property settings by defining the conditions that include users in an audience. You can create audiences based on both demographics and user behavior on your website.

Once you create audiences, they start to populate with users. You can report on them within Google Analytics and export them to other products for use in remarketing and personalization.
Create, edit, and archive audiences via your Google Analytics 4 property settings by defining the conditions that include users in an audience. You can create audiences based on static and dynamic evaluation, metrics collected within a specific scope of time, or specific sequences of actions.

Once you create audiences, they start to populate with users. You can report on them within Google Analytics and export them to other products for use in remarketing and personalization.

Migration: Things to know

Audiences that you create in Google Analytics 4 are automatically replicated in Firebase and vice versa. You can use audiences with several Firebase-specific services, such as A/B Testing and In-App Messaging.

Audiences that you create in Google Analytics 4 automatically become available for targeting in any linked Google Ads accounts; you don't need to share audiences individually.

Remarket to website visitors

Remarketing allows you to reach visitors who've shown a heightened level of engagement with your website but haven't yet converted (for example, those who have reached step 4 of a 5-step goal funnel). You can also take advantage of remarketing to provide further support and incentives for users who have converted.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
See About Remarketing Audiences in Google Analytics and Enable Remarketing and Advertising Reporting Features to learn more. See Enable Remarketing with Google Analytics data.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 includes dynamic lookback for remarketing audiences, which allows definitions of audiences based on actions that users have not taken in x days.

Market to users similar to your website visitors

You can take advantage of Google's privacy-safe, machine-learning capabilities to target your marketing campaigns to new users who share commonalities with users who have visited your website and whom you have included in an audience. Referred to as Similar Audiences in the Google Ads Display Network and Targeting Expansion in Display & Video 360, this capability can take advantage of the remarketing audiences that you have defined in Universal Analytics or Google Analytics 4.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
See About Remarketing Audiences in Google Analytics and Enable Remarketing and Advertising Reporting Features to learn about defining remarketing audiences in Universal Analytics, which you can use for Similar Audiences in Google Ads and Audience Expansion in Display & Video 360.

See Enable Remarketing with Google Analytics data to learn about defining remarketing audiences in Google Analytics 4, which you can use for Similar Audiences in Google Ads.

Campaigns, channel customization, and media integration


Customize the channel groupings that appear in Google Analytics

Channel groupings provide a high-level breakdown for reporting by traffic acquisition sources. You can enhance the relevance of channel groups to your reporting audience by customizing for specific channel breakouts that best accommodate your acquisition strategy and different campaigns.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
The range of options for editing channel groupings in Universal Analytics includes revisions to the Default Channel Grouping or creating a new set of channels at the view level and personal level.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Differentiate between branded and unbranded search terms in your paid search traffic

Brand-related and generic search terms often have vastly different performance metrics, so it's useful to report on them separately.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create a new channel grouping in your Universal Analytics view that holds all traffic from your branded search terms. With the new grouping, you can report on the branded paid search traffic, while you can see the performance of the generic paid search traffic in the original channel grouping.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Gain perspective on partial conversion credit by channel

The default attribution model in Google Analytics is last non-direct click. This model is useful for understanding conversion assist by channel, it doesn't account for channels that may have generated earlier sessions and assisted conversions that occurred in later sessions. Attribution modeling (both rules-based and data-driven) is designed to share credit more equitably among the channels that have contributed to conversions.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Universal Analytics provides a range of reports for modeling attribution, grouped within the Multi-Channel Funnel reports and within the standalone Attribution (Beta) report configurations. Google Analytics 4 offers two reports focused specifically on attribution: Model Comparison and Conversion Paths. As new features in these reports, YouTube EVC (engaged-view conversions) are included as a marketing channel. Data-driven attribution is coming soon to the Attribution reports.

In the Google Analytics 4 property settings, you can also specify the attribution model and lookback window that apply to event-scoped acquisition dimensions such as Source, Medium, Campaign, and Default channel grouping. If you change the attribution model to Ads-Preferred last click, Google Analytics 4 assigns conversions to a Google Ads click that occurred within the specified lookback window, even if a click from another traffic source occurred more recently.

Migration: Things to know

The option to change the default attribution model from Cross-channel last click to Ads-preferred last click is new in Google Analytics 4. Note that this setting applies to event-scoped dimensions but not user-scoped or session-scoped traffic dimensions (such as Session source or First user medium).

The default attribution lookback in Google Analytics 4 is 90 days, compared to 6 months in Universal Analytics. This difference can result in data differences between Google Analytics 4 and Universal Analytics. For example, if a user clicks through to your website from a social link today and then returns directly in 4 months and converts, Universal Analytics would assign conversion credit to the social click, whereas Google Analytics 4 would assign conversion credit to direct.

Custom dimensions and custom metrics


Add your own fields to describe pages/screens, user interactions, and users

Extend Google Analytics with your own descriptors (known as "custom dimensions") to gain insights that are most relevant to your organization and stakeholders.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
To record a custom dimension, set up the custom dimension slot in the property Admin and then include the custom dimensions in your hits. Once recorded, the custom dimension values are available for secondary dimensions, custom reports, segment definitions, and audiences shared with Google Ads, Display & Video 360, and Google Optimize 360.

Custom dimensions work similarly in Google Analytics 4. The main difference is that they're populated with event parameters rather than values passed specifically as custom dimensions.

Also, because all data is sent to Google Analytics 4 in the form of events, event scope in Google Analytics 4 replaces hit scope in Universal Analytics. You can use custom dimensions for secondary dimensions, comparisons, audiences, and primary dimensions and segment definitions in Explorations.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4's data model doesn't allow for session-scoped custom dimensions. Because Universal Analytics session-scoped custom dimensions can be similar to user-scoped custom dimensions, consider recreating session-scoped custom dimensions as user-scope custom dimensions in Google Analytics 4.

Permissions


User permissions

Grant different levels of access to different users, based on their need to access and report on data.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Set up user permissions either in Google Analytics under Account User Management/Property User Management/View User Management or in Google Marketing Platform. Set up user permissions either in Google Analytics under Account User Management/Property User Management or in Google Marketing Platform.

Migration: Things to know

Since Google Analytics 4 properties don't have views, user access and permissions are handled at the account and property levels.

Note: When you create a new Google Analytics 4 property, existing users on your Analytics account can access that property. However, you need to add any users on your Universal Analytics property (or its views) directly to your new Google Analytics 4 property.

Data retention and deletion


Define the amount of time before user-level and event-level data stored by Google Analytics is automatically deleted from Analytics servers

Depending on your company's policies, you may be required to have data that's tied to individuals only remain in Google Analytics for a limited period of time.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Update the Data retention period in your Universal Analytics property's Tracking Info setting.

The retention can be set to 14, 26, 38, or 50 months or to never expire. This setting doesn't affect the standard aggregated Google Analytics reports.
Update the Data retention period in your Google Analytics 4 property's Data Settings.

The retention can be set to 2 or 14 months. This setting doesn't affect the standard aggregated Google Analytics reports.

Delete data that has been collected into Google Analytics

If you've inadvertently collected data that shouldn't be stored in Google Analytics (particularly personally identifiable information, which violates the Google Analytics terms of service), then you need to be able to have it deleted.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Create a Data Deletion request in your Universal Analytics Property Settings. The request will delete all data in a field for the provided date range. Create a Data Deletion request in your Google Analytics 4 Property Settings. The request can either delete all data in a selected event/parameter for the provided date range, or only data matching a given key.

Migration: Things to know

Data deletion in Google Analytics 4 provides a more surgical approach and thereby better preserves non-problematic data.

Product linking

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Take advantage of Google Analytics 4 conversions and audiences in Google Ads.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4

Link a Universal Analytics property to one or more Google Ads accounts to:

  • View Universal Analytics goal and ecommerce transaction data in Google Ads.
  • Share Universal Analytics audiences with Google Ads to use for remarketing and activation of similar audiences.
  • See Google Ads data in the Universal Analytics Google Ads reports.

Link a Google Analytics 4 property to one or more Google Ads accounts to:

  • View Google Analytics 4 data in Google Ads.
  • Share Google Analytics 4 audiences to use for remarketing and activation of similar audiences.
  • Populate your Google Ads campaigns into the Advertising Workspace, including the Attribution reports.

Migration: Things to know

Linking Google Ads to Google Analytics 4 provides the same benefits as linking to Universal Analytics. You'll automatically see Google Analytics 4 conversion metrics and share Google Analytics 4 audiences with Google Ads accounts without needing to explicitly push them.

Bid on imported Google Analytics conversions in Google Ads

Importing conversions into Google Ads allows you to access your Analytics conversions and data related to your Google Ads clicks, see Google Analytics conversion data in Google Ads, and give Google Ads Smart Bidding access to data that helps optimize bids, potentially increasing conversions and lowering costs.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Import Analytics goals and transactions into Google Ads Conversion Tracking Import Google Analytics 4 conversions into Google Ads

Migration: Things to know

To avoid double-counting conversions, remove your existing Universal Analytics conversions from your conversion settings within Google Ads.

Correlate website visits with in-store visits

Enable Store Visits to track the estimated number of users who interact with your digital properties and then visit a store location within 30 days. Store Visits provides particular insight into the digital channels that are supporting physical store visits.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
To learn about the requirements for enabling Store Visits, see About Store Visits in Analytics (beta).
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Export granular Google Analytics data into a scalable cloud data warehouse

Share raw Google Analytics data with BigQuery.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.

Export session and hit data from a Google Analytics 360 account to BigQuery, and then use a SQL-like syntax to query all of your Analytics data.

Export all of your raw events from your Google Analytics 4 property to BigQuery, and then use SQL-like syntax to query that data.

The Display & Video 360 reporting integration allows Analytics 360 customers to view and analyze Display & Video 360 data in Analytics. Once the integration is complete, you'll see a new set of dedicated Display & Video 360 reports in the Acquisition section of Analytics 360. These reports show Analytics site engagement and conversion metrics in the context of Display & Video 360 dimensions. There are also updated Acquisition reports that separately break out Display & Video 360 trafficked display advertising.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

The Search Ads 360 reporting integration allows Analytics 360 customers to view and analyze Search Ads 360 data in Analytics 360. Once the integration is complete, you’ll see a new set of dedicated Search Ads 360 reports in the Acquisition section of Analytics 360. These reports show the Analytics 360 Acquisition-Behavior-Conversions (ABC) metrics along with Search Ads 360 dimensions, as well as Clicks data imported from Search Ads 360.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

The Campaign Manager 360 reporting integration allows you to report Campaign Manager dimensions such as Advertisers and Placements against Google Analytics built-in dimensions, such as Browser, and custom dimensions that you'll be capturing, such as Industry.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.

The Campaign Manager integration is available for Google Analytics 360.

This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 will offer integration with Campaign Manager for all Google Analytics properties (free and enterprise) as well as unified analysis and attribution reporting across Web and mobile app.


Measure AdSense monetization by page

Link AdSense to Google Analytics to report ad revenue metrics against Google Analytics dimensions.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
If you link an AdSense account to a Google Analytics property, the views within that property include reports that display AdSense revenue by Page and by acquisition dimensions such as Referrer.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Integrate Google Search Console to view organic search engine performance within Google Analytics

Integration with Search Console allows for administering, monitoring, and reporting of your site's presence in Google Search results, optimizing of how your site is evaluated by Google, and addressing of any issues that may impact site performance and security.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Set up the Google Search Console integration in Admin, under the Property column, Product Linking > All Products. The linking process requires site ownership.
 This feature is coming soon to Google Analytics 4 properties.

Target Google Analytics audiences for testing and personalization

When you integrate Google Analytics with Optimize 360, you can target Google Analytics audiences for testing and personalization in Optimize. While Optimize offers a variety of targeting options natively, the integration with Google Analytics allows for richer audience targeting, including custom dimension values such as loyalty level or lead status that you may be capturing.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
See the feature comparison for Google Analytics integration with Optimize and Optimize 360.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Analyze website behavior based on test variations

While you can configure multiple test objectives within Optimize, you may also want to create segments based on Optimize test variations to apply for analysis across your Google Analytics reports.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
As indicated in the Metrics and Dimensions Explorer, the Experiment Name, Experiment ID, Variant, and Experiment ID with Variant dimensions are available for segment definition within Google Analytics.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Integrate Salesforce Marketing Cloud to send targeted emails and SMS based on website activity

When you integrate Salesforce Marketing Cloud with Google Analytics, you can send targeted emails and SMS messages based on audiences that you define in Google Analytics, such as website visitors who have generated more than three sessions or have reached a certain point in a conversion funnel.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.

The Salesforce Marketing Cloud integration is available for Google Analytics 360 and also requires licensing through Salesforce.

The Salesforce Marketing Cloud reporting integration with Google Analytics 4 properties lets you see Analytics campaign, usage, and content data in Salesforce.

Migration: Things to know

The Salesforce Marketing Cloud integration is available for all Google Analytics 4 users.

Integrate Salesforce Sales Cloud to attribute offline performance to online channels

When you integrate Salesforce Sales Cloud with Google Analytics, you can trigger events and configure goals in Google Analytics for lead and opportunity status changes that occur offline with Salesforce Sales Cloud, such as an opportunity changing to Closed-Won. You can then use the attribution features in Google Analytics to attribute the offline conversions to one or more digital marketing touchpoints.

You can also populate custom dimensions in Google Analytics for additional, non-PII information about the leads, such as industry or job role, that is stored originally in Sales Cloud.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
The Salesforce Sales Cloud integration is available for Google Analytics 360.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Reporting

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Reporting user interface


Report on subsets of data

Remove unrelated data and segment aggregate data.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4

Custom segments and view filters allow you to refine your data and drill into relevant dimensions and metrics.

Segments and filters in the Explorations workplace let you drill down into specific subsets of data.

Google Analytics 4 subproperties, a 360 feature, are designed to give you the capabilities of views in the form of fully functioning properties. Subproperties get their data from 360 properties and constitute a full or partial subset of that data depending on how you configure them.

There are also other Google Analytics 4 features that are similar to Universal Analytics view-related features.

Create segments

Define characteristics for subsets of data to be able to report on, and compare, with other subsets of data.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
The Segment Builder interface can be used to configure a segment, which are based on dimensions, metrics, and conditions that you define for each segment. Segments can also be applied to audience definitions. Segments can be created in the Explorations workspace, with the Segment Builder, and be based on users, sessions, or events. For reports outside the Explorations workspace, Comparisons are used, which are similar to segments and are dimension-only based.

Migration: Things to know

For Google Analytics 4 properties, segments are only available in Explorations.

In Universal Analytics, properties are subject to certain limits that don't apply in Google Analytics 4 properties.

View performance by time-based cohorts

Understand the performance of different time-based cohorts. For example, if you observe that users who first interacted with your website in the third week of February demonstrate higher retention and conversion rates for a longer time period than users who interacted with your site in the second week of February, you can then try to determine which factors (such as traffic source or onsite experience) that generated the improvement.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
The Cohort Analysis report appears as a pre-built report in the Audience section of the left navigation. Cohort exploration is available as an analysis template in Google Analytics 4.

Migration: Things to know

Cohort explorations in Google Analytics 4 offer several important additional configurations.

Cohorts in Universal Analytics are based only on acquisition date, but you can also base Google Analytics 4 cohorts inclusion and return criteria on any event, conversion, or transaction, or a specific event or audience.

There are several options for displaying metrics cumulatively over time or by individual time period, cumulatively for all cohort members, or as an average per member.

You can also break down the cohort by additional dimensions, such as Country or User traffic source.

Build a conversion funnel

Identify drop-off in the steps leading to conversion.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4

You can configure a funnel leading to a destination goal and then view funnel performance in the Funnel visualization and Goal flow reports. The Reverse goal path report shows the steps that led to goal completions independently of any funnels that you have configured explicitly.

 This feature is only available for Google Analytics 360 properties.

In a Universal Analytics 360 property, you can also create a custom funnel or funnel analysis to track the steps to specific actions, whether or not you have specified them as goal completions.

Google Analytics 4 doesn't associate funnels directly with the conversion events that you specify. However, you can use the funnel exploration technique to build a funnel leading to any end point, essentially creating a conversion funnel.

Path explorations also provide the option of dynamic pathing the steps that users are taking to reach a specific end point.

Migration: Things to know

Dynamic funnel analysis, which is restricted in Universal Analytics to 360 users only, is now available to all users of Google Analytics 4.

Schedule emails

Send important reports to key individuals at frequencies and durations that you specify.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Set up scheduled emails directly from the report you want to send, and specify the recipients, the format of the report, the frequency, and the duration.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Create a timeline of occurrences and factors that may have influenced your data

Write a comprehensive timeline to provide important context on reports so you can avoid otherwise time-consuming drill-downs to determine the cause of a change in your data.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Learn more about the annotations feature in Google Analytics.
This feature isn't currently available in Google Analytics 4 properties.

Get answers to plain-language questions

Asking ad hoc questions in plain language can sometimes be more efficient than seeking an answer in a built-in report or creating a custom report.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Use the Ask Analytics Intelligence feature to answer questions about your historical Analytics data. You can enter plain-language questions into the Google Analytics 4 search box to return instant answers, as well as links to reports, Admin pages, and Google help content.

Migration: Things to know

The search feature in Google Analytics 4 returns a broader selection of results. In addition to direct answers, the feature also generates links to built-in reports, selections from the Insights feature, links to account and property configuration pages, and links to help content.

View anomaly detections

Reporting on specific anomalies can help you more quickly identify changes in data that may warrant further analysis and action.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Analytics Intelligence regularly scans your data for anomalies. These anomalies are presented as Insights on web and mobile. Analytics Intelligence is a set of features that uses machine learning and conditions you configure to help you understand and act on your data. It provides two types of insights: Automated insights and Custom insights.

Share reports and assets

Share access for various reports, goals, segments, and other assets to others across your organization.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
You can share assets from Admin > View > Share assets. You can also select and share assets from various goals, segments, reports, dashboards, and channel groupings. You share assets as either (1) a template link to recreate the asset in a particular property and view or (2) publicly as a Gallery Solution.

You can also export or set up automated emails in PDF or spreadsheet format for most built-in and custom reports.
For built-in reports, Google Analytics 4 allows you to share a link that is accessible to other users who have access to the property and to export the reports in CSV or PDF format. For Explorations, Google Analytics users with Collaborate rights can promote the reports for visibility to anyone who accesses the property.

Migration: Things to know

Google Analytics 4 doesn't have an exact equivalent of the share assets feature, which allows you to share configurations of custom reports, segments, goals, and dashboard with other Google Analytics users.

Custom reports and alerts


Save a built-in report that you have applied specialized configurations to

If you have applied configurations to a report including segments, secondary dimensions, and different display formats, it's helpful to save the customized report for instant retrieval at any time.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4

If you've applied specialized reporting options, such as an alternate display (Percent, Performance, Comparison, or Pivot), a secondary dimension, a segment, filtering, or sorting, you can save the report and access it later with the same configuration.

 

There isn't an exact equivalent of Universal Analytics saved reports, but Google Analytics 4 offers a range of fully customizable exploration templates.

Also, as an important new feature in Google Analytics 4, users with Edit access can customize the navigation and reports that other users see by default in the property.

Migration: Things to know
 
As a critical new feature in Google Analytics 4, the navigation and report customization allow users with Edit permissions to create a highly customized reporting experience in the property.

Create customized reports for each user

Custom reporting allows you to combine specific dimensions, metrics, and filtering to enhance reporting relevance for different stakeholders.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Universal Analytics offers three custom report templates: explorer (which is similar to most built-in reports), flat table, and map overlay. Google Analytics 360 users also have access to the custom funnel format. Explorations in Google Analytics 4 offers a variety of templates that you can use to build customized reporting.

Migration: Things to know

Explorations in Google Analytics 4 consolidates the custom reporting and Explorations features of Universal Analytics. Explorations techniques, such as funnel and segment overlap, were previously included in Google Analytics 360 only, but they're now available to all Google Analytics 4 users. In addition, Google Analytics 4 users have access to even more exploration techniques, including path exploration, which improves upon the Users Flow, Behavior Flow, and Events Flow of Universal Analytics.

The unified event model and user identity integrations between web and mobile app data streams in Google Analytics 4 allows your exploration to display funnels, paths, and user lifetime value more cohesively across devices and data streams.

The Universal Analytics custom reports feature corresponds most closely to Explorations; in both cases, users with Read & Analyze permission can create fully customized explorations that are visible only to the person who created them by default.

GA4 report customization, on the other hand, is a new capability that enables users with Edit permission to the property to customize the navigation and the reporting that other users see.

Use custom alerts

Define conditions under which an alert is to be sent, based on changes to certain dimensions and metrics, in order to respond quickly and efficiently.

Universal Analytics Google Analytics 4
Set up custom alerts in the Admin page for one or multiple views, based on changes in different dimensions and metrics. Set up custom insights on the Insights card to alert you (either via dashboard alerts or email) to changes in data.

Migration: Things to know

The custom insights feature in Google Analytics 4 includes hourly as a new evaluation interval for web data streams.

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