Just getting started with GA4? Follow along on our journey.
There. I said it out loud so you don’t have to (but feel free to as well!).
The latest thorn in my side (I’ve got a few) is that Google is going to (not offer, but going to) set up a GA4 account for you unless you tell them not to! What?
I’ve already created GA4 accounts for DriveTraffic and so many clients… is Google going to create another version? How confusing.
It sounds ideal… and perhaps it is but I have my doubts (as do my colleagues in the digital measurement industry).
- How are they going to get the GA4 code on your website for data collection?
- Are they going to add it to Google Tag Manager (GTM) and publish it? That would be so incredibly wrong on so many levels – without your consent, Google would be making changes to your live website. Talk about over-reaching!
- Will they use a Google Tag? Same idea – #overreaching
- Will they turn any events into conversions?
- Will they create custom conversions that are aligned with what we created in UA/GA3?
- Will they extend data retention to 14 months?
In the meantime, while I am in clients GA4 accounts, I am telling Google not to create a GA4 account (‘cause duh… I already did). Thanks to Analytics Mania for a video showing us how to do this (and no thanks to Google for the time suck required to tell them to keep their hands out of the data).
OTHER GA4 ISSUES WE ARE FACING
Shopify – In the early days of playing with GA4, I set it up on a client’s ecommerce site. The data is incredibly wrong compared to Shopify and UA/GA3. There are solutions but also Shopify is not yet fully supporting GA4 so we’ll wait for Shopify and see what happens to the data.
Acuity – I use Acuity Scheduler on the booking page of the DriveTraffic website and since moving to GA4 from GA3, bookings do not show up in GA4. I’m on the 3rd consultant looking into this and will keep you posted!
JaneApp – JaneApp is scheduling software made by a Canadian company and used by many healthcare practitioners. It is not yet ready for GA4 and they have not shared how they will work with GA4 in the future (time is running out @JaneApp – UA stops collecting data as of July 1, 2023 (just over 4 months to get the kinks worked out of GA4).
The way we at DriveTraffic work with JaneApp clients currently is to track outbound clicks from their website to JaneApp – we call this the intent to book as we cannot confirm if a specific user booked. In an ideal world, the JaneApp website becomes another data stream (just like your website is a data stream) in GA4 – that would rock!
Other than GA4, there are not many new things to worry about in the world of SEO and/or Google Ads at the moment 😊 I’m not using ChatGPT as much but I’m sure I’ll circle back and find new uses!