In 2021, Google introduced an early production version of the newest iteration of Google Analytics – the Google Analytics 4 and has since been updating the new tool, that will eventually replace the current generation Universal Analytics. While this it not happening just yet (and Google didn’t announce a definite date yet), Underscore’s recommendation is to start the transition in Q1 2022 and eventually move away from UA and into GA4. The change is inevitable as GA4 will be the new industry standard and historical data gathered in UA won’t be available in the new tool.
What’s new in GA4?
Most of all, GA4 is event-based (e.g. Pageviews are now events, not pre-defined metrics). This will allow for more customization and overall enhanced measurement. The new tool will also help companies comply with data regulations such as CCPA and GDPR. Also, GA4 aims to provide analytics solutions in a cookie-less world.
What are the recommended next steps?
During the transition phase, the best solution will be to add a GA4 property to a site that already has UA. This won’t affect the UA any way and will allow to start gathering the data in the new tool as soon as possible and eventually transition some settings to GA4. Read more: https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/10089681?hl=en&ref_topic=9143232
Google offers a step-by-step GA4 Setup Assistant that helps create a new property and transfer some of the UA settings over. Read more: https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/10312255