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Google Analytics 4 (GA4) – What To Know

This article provides information on Google’s newest analytic tracking, Google Analytics 4 (GA4), and how you can migrate to this new version from their previous version, Google Universal Analytics (GA3).

As of release 2022.R1.4 (v4.4.0), Google Analytics 4 is now supported in core product.  See steps here to integrate this with your site.

When will support for Universal Analytics (GA3) end?

July 1, 2023 – Google stops processing universal properties in GA3

January 1, 2024 – Historical data in GA3 is inaccessible

What are the major differences between GA3 and GA4?

Measurement Model

  • GA3 is based off sessions and pageviews
  • GA4 is based off events and parameters

Reporting Interface

Many of the features in the GA3 interface have been removed or relabeled.

Tracking IDs

GA3 tracking IDs will be replaced with GA4’s measurement ID.  Examples of each are below:


Bounce rate and engagement rate

In GA4, Bounce rates found in GA3 has been removed and replaced with an Engagement rate, which is a measure of the time spent on a landing page.  There are three metrics within the engagement rate:

  • Engaged sessions
  • Engagement rate
  • Engaged sessions per user

Data Retention

GA3 allowed you to specify how long to retain data, with an option to never expire

GA4 gives you two options to retain historical data: two or fourteen months

Other Notables

In GA4, IP-Address anonymization is enabled and cannot be turned off

Historical data in GA3 does not transfer to GA4, and only new data once GA4 is implemented will be collected; however, you can export your GA3 data following these steps.

Google recommends connecting GA4 to your website through Google Tag Manager, which is outlined below.

Third Party Setup Resources to Configure GA4

There are a variety of tutorials that run through methods to configure GA4.  Please note that GA4 is a new product and configuration could change over time.  However, here are some third party references to setup your GA4 account:

See our Google Analytics 4 – Installation article for steps on linking GA4 to your CIMcloud website.

Full list of GA4 setup steps from Google

Alternatives to GA4

If you find yourself wanting to get out of using Google Analytics to track data on your website, there are numerous alternatives available.  However, these products do not natively connect with other Google products you may use, such as Google Ads or Google Search Console.

Below are a list of some third parties that may be better suited for your website:


Google GA3 Deadlines

Google GA4 Announcement



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