7 Minutes Of Reading
May 9, 2023

Google Analytics 4: Exploring Its Pros and Cons

In the world of e-commerce, having an effective tracking system is crucial for success. Google Analytics has been the go-to tool for tracking website traffic, user behavior, and conversions for many years. With the introduction of GA4, it is worth integrating it with their third-party e-commerce platforms. The platforms we present here are WooCommerce, Shopify, and Magento.

We will explore the pros and cons of using GA4 with these platforms, the integration process, and the common issues that may arise.

Pros of Using GA4 with E-commerce Platforms

Let’s take a quick look at the pros of using GA4 with E-commerce.

  • One of the main benefits of using GA4 with e-commerce platforms is the improved tracking capabilities. GA4 provides a more accurate and comprehensive view of user behavior. It allows businesses to make better decisions and optimize their sales funnel. For example, GA4 allows businesses to track user engagement across different devices. It is particularly important in today’s mobile-first world.
  • Another benefit of using GA4 with e-commerce platforms is the ability to track and analyze customer lifetime value (CLV). This metric is crucial for understanding the long-term profitability of your customers. It can help you make informed decisions about marketing and customer acquisition costs. GA4 also provides deeper insights into customer behavior, such as the products they view, the time they spend on your site, and the specific actions they take before making a purchase.
  • GA4 also has an “enhanced measurement” feature. It makes it easier to track important events such as product clicks, video plays, and file downloads. This feature eliminates the need for custom event tracking, saving time and resources for businesses.

Cons of Using GA4 with E-commerce Platforms

Now let’s move forward with the cons of using GA4 with E-commerce platforms. While there are many benefits to using GA4 with e-commerce platforms, there are also some drawbacks to consider.

  • The main disadvantage is the learning curve associated with the new tool. GA4 has a different interface and tracking model compared to Universal Analytics. It may need businesses to invest initial time and resources in training and education.
  • Another potential drawback is the limited integration with third-party tools and platforms. While GA4 is compatible with many e-commerce platforms, some of the more advanced features may not be fully supported. This can limit the ability to track certain metrics and make data-driven decisions.
  • There is also the risk of losing historical data when migrating from Universal Analytics to GA4. Businesses that have been using UA for years may have accumulated a significant amount of data, which can be lost during the migration process. This can make it difficult to compare past performance with current metrics and track long-term trends.

Understanding the Integration Process

Integrating GA4 with e-commerce platforms can be a complex process, but it is essential for accurate tracking and analysis. The first step is to create a GA4 property and set up the necessary tracking codes on your website. This involves adding the GA4 tracking code to your website header & configuring the data streams for the platform.

Once the tracking codes are set up, businesses can start tracking key metrics such as page views, sessions, and transactions. To use the advanced features of GA4, businesses need to set up custom events and parameters. This involves defining specific actions that users take on your website. Such as adding a product to their cart or completing a purchase.

1. GA4 Integration with WooCommerce

WooCommerce is one of the most popular e-commerce platforms for WordPress websites, and it is fully compatible with GA4. To integrate GA4 with WooCommerce, businesses need to add the GA4 tracking code to their WordPress header and configure the data streams for their WooCommerce store. Once the tracking codes are set up, businesses can track key metrics such as product views, add to cart events, and purchases.

If you want to keep the hassle away, try the Conversios plugin. It enables the conversion tracking of GA4 in a few clicks. You can also track events of UA & GA4 with the dual tracking feature of the plugin.

2. GA4 Integration with Shopify

Shopify is another popular e-commerce platform and gained popularity around the world. If you want to integrate GA4 with Shopify, need to add a GA4 tracking code to your Shopify website. You need to keep an eye on the process, one wrong step and you won’t track the data you want.

The best solution for those who are looking for a GA4 app for the Shopify store– choose the ‘Conversios‘ plugin. GTM-based implementation of the Conversios app ensures you are getting accurate data on the events. You don’t need to rely on developers. You can track events without coding. By using your own GTM container, you will get full access to pre-built tags (70 tags), triggers, and variables.

3. GA4 Integration with Magento

Magento is a popular e-commerce platform that is widely used by businesses of all sizes. Same as other platforms, you need to integrate the GA4 tracking on the header of all the pages you want to track. It’s a difficult and time-consuming task.

No worries, Conversios has a solution for Magento as well. GA4 with Google Tag Manager is a tool of Conversios that is designed to automate the tracking of events in Magento. You can use your own GTM container q12(if you have one) or use the default container of Conversios to track the user behavior of your Magento store. Any day, you will be happy to have a tool that enables tracking of your GA4 events without any hassle.

GA4 vs Universal Analytics for E-commerce Tracking

GA4 offers many benefits for e-commerce tracking. But it is important to compare it with Universal Analytics to understand which tool is best for your business.

1) Data Model

One of the main differences between GA4 and Universal Analytics is the tracking model. GA4 uses an event-based model that allows businesses to track specific actions that users take on their websites. While Universal Analytics uses a session-based model that tracks user behavior over a while.

2) Cross-device tracking

Another difference is the ability to track user behavior across different devices. GA4 provides a more comprehensive view of user behavior by tracking users across different devices. Universal Analytics only tracks users within a single session.

3) More Advanced Features

GA4 offers more advanced features for e-commerce tracking, such as enhanced measurement and the ability to track customer lifetime value. These features make it easier for businesses to track important metrics and make data-driven decisions.

Common Issues with GA4 Integration

Integrating GA4 with e-commerce platforms can be a complex process. Businesses may encounter some common issues along the way.

1) Incorrect Implementation

The most common issue is the incorrect implementation of tracking codes. It leads you to inaccurate data and poor tracking performance.

What to do: you should ensure that the tracking codes are set up correctly and test them thoroughly before going live.

2) Data Mismatch

Another common issue is the mismatch of data between GA4 and the e-commerce platform. This can occur when the data streams are not set up correctly or when there are discrepancies in the data.

What to do: You should ensure that the data streams are configured correctly. and check the data matches between GA4 and the e-commerce platform.

3) Migration of Historical data

Businesses may encounter issues with the migration of historical data from Universal Analytics to GA4. This can be a complex process that requires careful planning and execution.

What to do: You should ensure that they have a clear plan for migrating their data. Also, test the migration thoroughly before going live.

Final Thoughts

The benefits of using GA4 with e-commerce platforms outweigh the drawbacks, but businesses should carefully evaluate their needs and consider seeking professional help to ensure a smooth transition to the new platform. By leveraging the insights provided by GA4, businesses can gain a competitive edge and drive growth in the ever-changing world of e-commerce.

If you need help with GA4 integration or e-commerce tracking, contact Conversios today to learn how we can help you optimize your website for success.

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Google Analytics 4(GA4): Pros & Cons (2023)