Google’s GA4 Transition Explained

Chrissie Koeppen

How you can ensure a smooth data transition (so that no data is lost & there is no break in data tracking) 

What is GA4? 

Google Analytics 4 is the newest version of Google Analytics, which provides more advanced tracking capabilities and a deeper understanding of user behavior across multiple devices and platforms. 

GA4 uses a new data model and event-based tracking and offers more comprehensive insights into user interactions with your website and other digital assets. 

On July 1, 2023 Google will sunset Universal Analytics, which is currently the most widely used version of Google Analytics. This means that all websites using Universal Analytics will need to transition to GA4 to continue tracking website activity and user behavior. 

We’ve been preparing for this change for quite some time here at Yes& and can help guide you through this process. 

Why is Google doing this? 

Google is always working to: 

  • Better track and understand website performance and user behavior. GA4 allows you to track user behavior across multiple devices and platforms, including mobile apps and websites. 
  • Bring to market cutting edge technology. GA4 uses machine learning to provide more detailed insights into user behavior and identify trends that may not be immediately apparent. 
  • Integrate with Big Query. 
  • Manage data privacy in a better way. 

What should you do next? 

Based on guidance provided directly by Google, here are nine steps to ensure a seamless transition from Universal Analytics to GA4: 

  1. Evaluate your current analytics setup: This is helpful to understanding how your data is currently being collected and used, as well as identifying any potential issues or areas for improvement in your data tracking setup.
  2. Create a GA4 property: Google Analytics will create one for you in March 2023 if you haven’t done so already. Once a basic setup is done, it will start collecting data in both places, which is helpful for collecting some historical data in GA4.
  3. Set up data streams: Data streams are used to collect data from different sources, such as websites, mobile apps, and other digital assets.
  4. Configure tracking: In GA4, tracking is based on events rather than pageviews. You will need to configure tracking for each event (i.e., clicks, form submissions, video plays, etc.)
  5. Migrate data: Once you have everything set up in GA4, you can begin migrating data either using a data migration tool or by manually exporting and then importing the data.
  6. Set up conversion tracking: You’ll need to set up conversion tracking for each event that represents a goal/conversion on your website.
  7. Configure custom reports: GA4 offers more flexibility for creating custom reports.
  8. Train your team: This includes training on setup, configuring tracking, data analysis, and reporting.
  9. Monitor and optimize: This includes regularly reviewing your data and optimizing as needed. 

What happens if you don’t have the staff, skills, or time to get this done on time? 

According to Google, organizations should start their transition in March so that GA4 setup is optimized and you start to capture and store historical data appropriately. 

If you don’t have the resources to get this done, Yes& can help provide you with a plan, optimize your GA4 setup, decide the best solution for your historical data, or all of the above. 

Sign up below to schedule a meeting with a member of our team. Additionally,  we are hosting a two-part webinar series to provide participants with an in-depth understanding of the GA4 transition, including why it matters, and what steps you can take to get fully transitioned. Learn more and register for Navigating the GA4 Transition: Part 1. 


Yes& is the Washington, DC-based marketing agency that brings commercial, association, and government clients the unlimited power of “&” – using a full suite of branding, digital, event, marketing, public relations, and creative capabilities to deliver meaningful and measurable results.

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Chrissie Koeppen
Chrissie Koeppen
Director of Digital Strategy