The free model of Google Analytics, Common Analytics, is probably the most broadly used internet analytics resolution. The platform is so fashionable that it dominates 86% market share, making Google the market chief. However although many think about Google Analytics the usual, there are causes to ask if it’s the excellent selection in your advertising and marketing setup—particularly since Google introduced the sundown of Common Analytics.
On July 1, 2023, Common Analytics properties will cease processing new hits, forcing customers to modify to its successor, Google Analytics 4. Whereas this may increasingly appear to be a pure development, entrepreneurs shouldn’t be fooled.
The training curve can be steep—Google Analytics 4 is nearly a completely new platform and nonetheless creating. On prime of that, Google Analytics dangers shedding the customers’ belief on account of grey areas across the likes of privateness and information possession.
With a privacy-focused future forward, now could be the time to hunt options that higher steadiness information assortment with compliance. With a correct analytics platform, entrepreneurs make your information assortment correctly: predictable and sustainable. In any case, entrepreneurs and analysts need to course of user-level information whereas constructing belief with their guests.
On this article, we are going to dive into the problems with Google Analytics 4 from a consumer perspective and from a privateness and compliance standpoint, so you may make an knowledgeable determination earlier than switching platforms.
Consumer perspective: Google Analytics 4 is a step within the fallacious course
Google Analytics 4 introduces an altered reporting and measurement expertise that’s neither properly understood nor broadly accepted by the advertising and marketing group.
From a consumer expertise perspective, many discover GA4 difficult to navigate. However past that, there are a bunch of challenges with the characteristic units. Allow us to dig deeper into these limitations:
There isn’t a easy strategy to migrate your information
Migration is a fancy course of and needs to be deliberate fastidiously. Sadly, Google Analytics 4 doesn’t make it any simpler. With out information or tag migration, all historic information from Common Analytics is not going to be transferred to the brand new platform.
The problem solely grows with the group’s dimension—you possibly can have a whole bunch of tags to maneuver. So, if entrepreneurs should begin gathering information from scratch, they may as properly change to a brand new analytic software program.
Not-so-intuitive consumer interface
Essentially the most outstanding problem entrepreneurs and analysts will seemingly encounter with Google Analytics 4 is the unfamiliarity with the brand new interface.
A brand new dashboard has a number of instantly obvious variations from what entrepreneurs are used to working. Hit sorts are important to how Common Analytic properties deal with all stats. Hit sorts embrace web page hits, occasion hits, eCommerce hits, and social interplay hits.
GA4 doesn’t have any idea of a success kind like Common Analytics makes use of. Every part in Google Analytics 4 is categorized as an “occasion.” It is a enormous distinction.
To ensure that entrepreneurs to have success on the brand new platform, they must adapt shortly to keep up the identical momentum that they had with this earlier platform.
Limits on customized dimensions
A customized dimension is an attribute that entrepreneurs can configure of their analytics instrument to dive deeper into their information. It provides the choice to pivot or section this information to isolate a selected viewers or site visitors for deeper evaluation.
GA4 certainly permits for customized dimensions to section studies, however there’s a strict restrict. You possibly can solely have as much as 25 user-scoped customized dimensions and as much as 50 event-scoped customized dimensions per property.
Lack of customized channel grouping
Channel groupings are rule-based groupings of promoting channels. When personalized, these groupings enable entrepreneurs to trace the efficiency of these channels effectively.
Not like Common Analytics, GA4 doesn’t can help you create customized channel groupings within the new interface. As an alternative, entrepreneurs will solely be capable of use their default channel groupings.
Motivations behind the brief deadline
The deadline Google has left the analytics group to behave is startling. There are numerous speculations as to why this is perhaps, together with:
- Google might have been upset with the pace of adoption for Google Analytics 4 and determined to behave decisively.
- Google circumventing a few of the authorized warmth that Common Analytics is dealing with within the EU.
- Google wanting to chop prices and rid itself of technical debt related to 1000’s of internet sites with legacy options put in. Since GA4 is designed to help Google’s promoting community, it ensures extra income than the competitors.
Now there’s a concrete deadline to make the change, entrepreneurs might want to resolve whether or not they need to begin adjusting to Google Analytics 4 or begin afresh with a brand new platform.
Privateness and compliance: Google Analytics 4 has a protracted strategy to go
If an organization operates in a number of international locations, advertising and marketing groups will want to pay attention to the quite a few challenges ensuing from the obligations of each native information privateness legal guidelines and worldwide rules.
Knowledge safety laws consistently altering and tight safety rules solely complicate issues additional. Studying the tea leaves, we consider GA4 is not going to final lengthy in Europe. Right here’s why:
Google Analytics violates European legislation
Google makes it tough to gather information consistent with the Normal Knowledge Safety Regulation (GDPR), which goals to revive management of non-public information to customers and prospects. The regulation requires you to acquire express consent when processing private information. Failure to adjust to this provision can lead to hefty fines and even prosecution.
The current determination of the Austrian Knowledge Safety Authority (DSB), states that using Google Analytics constitutes a violation of GDPR. Because of this organizations engaged in gathering, storing, and processing information about EU residents have to regulate their insurance policies and introduce critical technological adjustments to be GDPR-compliant.
There isn’t a clear guideline the place the info is related by way of Google Analytics
A Google information implies information is transferred to the closest Google Analytics server hub. Nonetheless, the info could also be saved in a geographic location that doesn’t have sufficient privateness safety to the EU.
Newly launched options in GA4 partially tackle this concern by permitting the primary a part of information assortment (and anonymization) on European servers. Nonetheless, information can, and probably will, be despatched to the U.S.
The way forward for advertising and marketing requires customers’ consent
Whether or not it’s the info high quality, instrument limitations, lack of privacy-friendly options, or transparency in dealing with information, we consider entrepreneurs will seemingly think about switching platforms.
Piwik PRO excluds the privateness and compliance points related to Google Analytics, permitting entrepreneurs to gather information predictably and sustainably. The consumer interface and have units are just like Common Analytics, so entrepreneurs and analysts really feel at dwelling when switching to our platform.
If you want to study extra about Google Analytics options or get extra info on the Piwik PRO Analytics Suite, go to piwik.professional.
Nonetheless undecided? Try our article on addressing the considerations about switching to an alternate analytics resolution and the analytic mindset you have to be taking: Switching from Google Analytics—right here’s what you want to know.