Businesses all around the world rely on Google Analytics to understand website performance, metrics and customer experience, and use the data and insights in GA to guide their onsite marketing and business strategy. It's one of the key tools we use here at Eastside Co not only for our own business, but also our clients to gauge performance and steer future activity.
Google has said that research has shown it that marketers value the tool but they would like it to be better. Consumer behaviour and industry standards have changed, and the current toolset is outdated, not allowing users to get a complete view of their customers and data for a full set of insights.
Google introduced a beta property last year ('App + Web') and is using that as the basis to launch a new version of GA which it said in a recent blog post will 'give you the essential insights you need to be ready for what's next'.
So What's New in The New Google Analytics?
Machine learning automatically highlights helpful insights and give a more rounded understanding of customers across platforms and devices.
It has privacy at its core, so GA should still provide accurate information even if rules change around areas like cookie restrictions which have created gaps in data traditionally.
It will automatically alert you to significant data trends: for example products with a rising popularity due to a shift in customer needs.
It can also use data to make predictive insights: churn probability helps you understand where to invest in either retention or acquisition of customers, and other predictive metrics like potential revenue from a particular customer demographic will help you make better strategic decisions.
New integrations will help you improve your marketing ROI. Working more closer with Google Ads will help better target and engage with customers and prospects.
App and web integrations can be measured together. In practical terms this means, for example, the new GA reporting can include conversions from YouTube engaged views that happen both in-app and on the web. This kind of approach means that you'll be able to see the impact of all your marketing efforts, across all channels, more clearly, and can therefore use that information to determine and inform future campaigns.
Customer-Centric Measurement, Not Fragmented By Device or Platform
A huge part of the new Google Analytics is about giving you a more complete view of how customers interact with your business: for example, knowing that someone has found you via an ad, then installed your app, before purchasing through the app will, be invaluable data.
Reporting has also been simplified to make understanding acquisition, conversion and retention more straightforward. You'll be able to find insights in the part of the jouirney you want to focus on. Find out how new customers are arriving in the acquisition report, what actions they take in the engagement report, and what happens post-purchase in the retention report.
One of the points Google makes very clearly is that the new version of GA is designed to adapt to a future where cookies and other identifiers may not exist, and that modelling built in will fill any gaps where there may be incomplete data without compromising its insights.
What Do You Need To Do?
The new GA is the default view for new properties and this is where Google will concentrate on making improvements from now on. It has advised that businesses using GA should create a new Google Analytics 4 property (previously known as an App + Web property) alongside their existing properties for the time being. This will allow you to keep all of your current set-up while gathering data and benefitting from the new features.
If you need any marketing support for your Shopify business, drop us a line and we'd be happy to have a chat!