Last week’sannouncement by Googlethat UA/GA360 will be sunset on July 1 and October 1, 2023 respectively, has not surprisingly become a trending topic. People have a lot of questions. In this first in a series of posts, we’ll provide answers to what we (and Google) have been most often asked.
Will Google consider extensions on these dates?
No. Google has been very clear there is no flexibility on these dates and they will not be extending these timelines for Universal Analytics users or GA360 customers. Everyone should see these dates as hard deadlines.
What happens to current GA360 clients who need to renew their licensing contracts after October 1st, 2022?
We recommend that clients who’s renewal date is after Oct 1 of this year be at a point in the process where they are ready to transition to GA4.
As a GA360 customer, is there an option to early renew to a GA4360 license?
Yes, if you are ready to move to GA4 before your GA360 license ends, you can early renew to a GA4360 license. Again, we recommend speaking with your license provider who can discuss your needs specifically.
What steps should customers be taking, before the July 1st/Oct 1 2023, change date?
The exact steps are going to vary by customer and by property.
To help, Google has created an experience called aSetup Assistant. If you log into your GA account, there’s a new banner that shows up at the top of the experience that points you right into the setup assistant experience.
Clicking theLet’s Gobutton takes you into theSetup Assistant:
The Assistant will walk you through all of the different things you’re likely to want to set up in GA4, such as tagging your website, creating audiences, setting up integrations with other products, etc. and then getting your users access to the GA4 property.
There are even various tools in there that will help you copy data from your Universal Analytics properties to your GA4 properties.
Depending on the size and complexity or your property(s) and the experience of your analytics team, it’s a good idea to speak to an experienced services provider about your transition before just going in and making changes.Schedule a GA4 Transition Q&A Planning call with Napkyn
Can I/How Can I stitch/review together UA & GA4 properties?
The first thing to mention here is that the way UA and GA4 calculate various metrics, can vary based on the metric. In light of this, Google is currently creating a Guide that will help you understand the differences for common metrics. It will be available shortly.
Secondly, you can also download/export your data out of Universal Analytics and then use a visualization tool such as Data Studio to help compare your UA and GA4 data side-by-side. This will also be covered in the guide mentioned in the previous question.
How can I download/export my data out of UA?
There are many ways to do this. For example using the Analytics API, if you have BigQuery integrated you can export data out of UA, and there are also various ways in the reporting interface where you can download data to CSV.
What does Google mean when they say they are going to stop processing new hits?
As of July 1st for UA and October 1st, 2023 for GA360, hits will no longer be processed meaning any time a property or a website sends in a hit (An interaction that results in data being sent to Analytics such as page tracking, event tracking, ecommerce tracking, etc), into a UA/360 property, that hit will no longer be counted. For example, say you have tracking on your website that tells you how many people visited your checkout page, on June 30th you can see 7,800 people went to that page. If you haven’t transitioned to GA4, on July 1st that number will be zero. And all of your other numbers will be 0.
You will no longer see data from July/Oct 1 dates forward, unless GA4 is already set up.
What happens to all of the data that has been collected before July/Oct 1, 2023?
There are 2 important things to note here:
All of your data collected before these dates becomes READ ONLY,
and after 6 months, if you haven’t downloaded or exported it, that data is gone forever.
We and Google both recommend you start creating GA4 properties right away. The sooner you do, the more data you’re going to have in your GA4 properties.
As mentioned at the beginning of this post, we’re going to be adding new questions and answers on the GA4 transition as they come in but if you have any questions or anything you’d like to talk to us about specific to your organization, please use the link above to schedule a call. We’ve helped many companies of various size and complexity through this transition all ready and we’re very happy to share our knowledge.