GA4 - what is new

GA4 replaces Google Analytics Universal – what you need to know?

GA4 replaces Google Analytics Universal – what do you need to know?

Google Analytics 4 Google’s next-generation measurement tool.

Google launches the new Google Analytics 4 (GA4) which will replace the current well-known (and user-friendly!) Google Analytics Universal starting from July 1, 2023!

On July 1, 2023, standard Google Analytics Universal properties will stop processing data. Your Analytics Universal data will be kept for at least 6 more months after July 1st. If you need to keep your past Universal data, the best way to do that is by exporting it as soon as we hit July.

Our team of dedicated specialists at Relton Associates strongly encourages you to make the switch to GA4 as soon as possible and will be more than happy to help you with this!

Google Analytics Universal vs Google Analytics 4 (GA4)

Are you wondering what’s new in GA4? Is GA4 actually better than Google Analytics Universal? We will try to find the answers to these questions below.

1. New Reporting Interface

The first main difference is the new reporting interface in GA4. You will find that most of the reports have been renamed or replaced – for example, in GA4 you will see new reports such as Retention, Engagement and Monetisation replacing the good old Audience, Behaviour and Converisons. The reason for this is the new data measurement model.

Interface of Google Analytics Universal

Interface of Google Analytics Universal 

New interface of GA4

New interface of GA4


2. New Data Measurement Model

The greatest difference between Google Analytics Universal and Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the different data models they use. Whilst Google Analytics Universal is based on sessions and pageviews, the GA4 data model is based on events and parameters. In GA4 every tracked activity taken by a user is considered an event.

Google Analytics Universal vs Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics Universal vs Google Analytics 4

At the same time, Google Analytics Universal tracks screenviews in separate mobile-specific properties, whereas GA4 combines both web and app data in the same property. If you are tracking both web and app data in your GA4 property, be sure to take the additional app traffic into consideration when comparing pageview metrics between the two.

3. No Bounce Rate and New Reporting Metrics

With Google Analytics 4 (GA4), you get new metrics along with new reports. Surprisingly, you will notice that there is no Bounce Rate metric in GA 4 (or at least as it’s calculated in Google Analytics Universal). GA 4 replaces ‘Bounce Rate’ with the new ‘Engagement Rate’ metric.

What is considered Bounce Rate in GA4 is the percentage of sessions that were not engaged sessions. In other words, the Engagement Rate is the inverse of Bounce Rate. Google’s explanation for this is that Bounce Rate has become less useful as websites and apps have changed. GA4 is more event and action-oriented than Google Analytics Universal and this new way of tracking doesn’t make much sense to have a metric describing inactivity on the site.

Another important and new metric you will find in Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is called ‘Pages and screens’ and shows the most popular web pages and app screens. It is easier than ever to find what web pages or app screens are getting most of your traffic now (and what do not perform as you expect!).

4. Advanced Analysis

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) gives you the opportunity to perform more advanced analysis compared to Google Analytics Universal where you can create custom reports and use secondary dimensions to uncover insights.

GA4 takes the analysis one step further with its Exploration reports which allow you to gain deeper insights about users and their journeys. You can set up a custom report or use prebuilt templates for different analysis in GA4, whilst being offered to add different segments, dimensions, and metrics to your custom reports. However, Exploration reports might be found more complicated, especially for beginners, and may be suitable for people with advanced Google Analytics knowledge.

Would Google Analytics 4 affect my Google Ads campaigns?

The straight answer here is ‘Yes’ but only in some cases! Please remember that Google Analytics Universal will stop processing data after July 1, 2023 (July 1, 2024 for Analytics 360 properties). If your Google Analytics Universal property is linked to your Google Ads account, Universal Analytics data will stop flowing to Google Ads after July 1 2023 (or 2024 for Analytics 360 properties) and this could affect your Google Ads campaigns if you’re:

  • Bidding on imported Universal Analytics goals or e-commerce transactions.
  • Using a Universal Analytics audience in your campaigns.
  • Importing Universal Analytics site metrics.

GA4 summary

We hope this article helps you find the main differences between the good old Google Analytics Universal and the new monster called Google Analytics 4 (GA4). If you haven’t migrated your Google Analytics Universal to GA4, we would strongly recommend addressing this as soon as possible. And if you need help from specialists, Relton Associates would be more than happy to help you with this!

PI LIVE & Influencer Marketing Show Review

PI LIVE & Influencer Marketing Show Review

Time is precious and time is money. Attending a trade show needs to be worthwhile. There are plenty that are not worth the effort. So, is the PI LIVE & Influencer Marketing Show worth the time and money?

I attended the shows to keep myself up-to-date on affiliate marketing, in particular to check out what was new, if anything. The other main reason was to gain a greater understanding about influencer marketing.

As soon as you walk in the friendly, yet professional atmosphere’s there, everywhere. Yes, it’s about showcasing, but you immediately feel like you are among like-minded professionals. There’s little ‘selling’, because the tech and services often speak for themselves.

What’s so special about the PI LIVE & Influencer Marketing Show?

The quality of the attendees and the quality of the businesses presenting is definitely confirmation you are in the right place (as it should be). It may sound obvious, but I’ll say it anyway; this is a show whose focus is around performance and measuring that performance.

Marin Dome stage at PI Live & IMS Show

Marin Dome stage at PI LIVE & IMS Show

This is a huge differentiating factor to other shows as they can lose that type of focus…it’s very ROI-driven. As a self-confessed numbers guy, this excites me. This is one of the main reasons I’ve been two years in a row.

Other reasons to attend? It attracts serious digital specialists from all over Europe. You can have engaging conversations with people you wouldn’t normally encounter; digital professionals whose passion equals yours.

Also, it’s enjoyable. This may seem a moot-point to some, but it has a really good vibe. Full of positive energy, full of positive people who are happy to be there. It makes a huge difference when you compare it to other shows. I had to duck out before beer o’clock as I have a young family and wanted to be home for bedtime…but I was enjoying it and wanted to stay, which is rarely the case at shows.


Top tips for planning ahead

It was a busy Tuesday when I arrived at 9am as doors opened, queues are organised and moved swiftly but they may delay you getting to the first talk or session. So get there in good time.

I highly recommend you plan your day, especially for the talks. When I arrived the Kindred Theatre was on the 2nd floor and took longer than I would’ve liked to find. The case studies only had a certain number of allocated spaces, arrive at least 10 minutes ahead of schedule to secure your place. Sessions at the Main Stage and Marin Dome are going to be just fine as there’s plenty of overflow space.

What about the quality of the speakers?

There’s a variety of topics and plenty to fill up both days of the show. To that end if it’s possible, attend both days to ensure you soak up as much as you can. You may have to make some tough choices between which sessions to attend though.

As there are so many talks it would be a lengthy article to comment on all of them. The one that stood out for me was the first talk I attended: ‘The coming revolution of immersive internet and dominance of virtual influencers’. This was genuinely impressive innovation I had not seen before and un-questionably the future. Like it or not virtual influencers and artificial intelligence will be a major influence on our children and may already have significant influence on many of us. You could not fail to be impressed with how Dudley Nevill-Spencer presented what this future space is going to look like and what is (surprisingly) already in play.

The icing on the cake

Digital Disruptors Final at PI Live & IMS Show

Digital Disruptors Final at PI LIVE & IMS Show

For me the Digital Disruptors Final was the icing on the cake. This touches on a passion and a frustration of mine:

• The passion is engaging with the youth-of-today who have that digital and entrepreneurial mindset and enhancing it
• The frustration with why large corporates and their out-of-date recruitment processes who seem to struggle recruiting in the digital world. I’ve even written an article about it: 5 reasons why large corporate businesses struggle in the digital world

The aim of digital disruptors is to encourage young people to investigate the online space, empowering them think outside the box and about what is achievable. You don’t need degree to be work within the online ecosphere, and digital disruptors embraces this.

Will I attend the PI LIVE & Influencer Marketing Show again next year?

YES. I found the Influencer Marketing aspect of the shows very strong. I wanted to spend more time being talked through demos. Often you don’t need to attend particular trade shows two/three years in a row, but with the technology moving so swiftly, missing the show means you may well miss the next early stage innovation.

…and some admin points

Lunch at PI Live & IMS Show

Lunch at PI LIVE & IMS Show

Dietary requirements – I have a bit of a snowflake diet these days (Dairy, Gluten, Egg, and Potato intolerances are just a few of the no-go foods), but this is not an issue here and plenty of choice even for me

On tap – Complimentary water, coffee and fruit is provided throughout the day and there’s plenty of it
Cloakroom – Complimentary
WiFi – Complimentary
Places to work while at the show – These are provided in The Nookery

Head of UK Sales for Google Analytics 360 Richard Morris speaking about Digital Channel Attribution

Google and NMPi’s first ever Big Debate at Kings Cross

Google and NMPi’s first ever Big Debate at Kings Cross

Last Friday was Google and NMPi’s first ever Big Debate held at Google’s new offices in Kings Cross. With Google’s very own Richard Morris, Head of UK Sales for Google Analytics 360 (AKA: GA360), discussing and debating the pros and cons of Digital Channel Attribution with other industry professionals. It was insightful and we’re looking forward to the next one. Here’s some of the highlights…

Google’s newest offices in Kings Cross, London

The new and very innovative Google Offices in Kings Cross image

Inside the Google Offices in Kings Cross. Are they slides or stairs?

It really would be remiss of me not to comment on Google’s offices. Having visited Google’s offices near Tottenham Court Road I was intrigued to see the set up here. I didn’t see as much as I would have liked, but what I did see absolutely impressed me – another very slick operation with excellent conferencing facilities.

The image to the right is of the centre of the building, an impressive sight when you look upwards. Elevators on the side and stairs (or possibly slides as you can never be too sure with Google) rising across centre.


The Digital Topics discussed

The reason we were all there…well most of us anyway. There was a number of topics discussed and a number of speakers offering some valuable and succinct snapshots on how they felt the future of digital would unravel. Nothing ground breaking, but very well presented. Here’s a snapshot of my favourites:

“Is this the death of Digital Marketing?“

Presented by Nicola Hollow; she confesses it is an attention grabbing headline, but not without cause. Of course, digital marketing is not dead, but the days of the digital team working in the attic or basement silo’d off from the rest of the business are soon coming to an end, and rightly so. Digital will have to be integrated in to almost every team within your business to varying degrees.

Nicola also raised the challenge of digital teams needing to be ‘creative’. Often digital teams are made up of data driven logically minded geniuses who’s strengths do not lie in being creative – I have to agree here too. You could argue it’s a level playing field online without creativity. This is why emotive branding is vital to differentiate your brand from competitors.

Head of UK Sales for Google Analytics 360 Richard Morris speaking about Digital Channel Attribution

Discussing the pros and cons of Digital Channel Attribution during the Big Debate

“How to swim when you are drowning in Data”

Presented by Kate Jervis; Kate’s outlook on the power of data was simplistic and mirrored my own feelings about digital in general. Data and digital are constantly changing. So there will never be the perfect time to roll out data processes or campaigns, you will always be something missing from the process. Digital is constantly changing, so don’t let ‘excellent get in the way of good’, you create excellence later, best get started first.

“Failure is, in fact, an option”

Presented by Sarah Ward; another grabbing headline which really resonates with me. Digital is all about testing and measuring. The beauty of digital is you can often test and measure everything and rather easily too. So be prepared to test, test and test again and never treat something that is not an instant success as a failure, it’s just part of the journey to success. Naturally, you can significantly negate failure and focus your testing through bringing in experts, like Relton Associates (again, it would be rather remiss of me not to drop this in).

The cause – Médecins Sans frontières

MSF logo - Doctors Without Borders

Médecins Sans Frontières | Doctors Without Borders

As it happens, a cause very close to my heart. Also known as Doctors Without Borders. The Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO) Les Médecins Sans Frontiers takes medicines and doctors to those who really need it. From war torn territories to natural disaster zones. You will tend to find them in places around the World where no other NGO goes or that country’s government ignores, like: Syria, Iraq, Myanmar (Burma) and alike. To donate (and please do if you can afford to) click here.


So, will I be attending the NMPi Big Debate again? Yes, I found it to be insightful, interesting and innovative in its delivery.

NMPi are specialists in Cost Per Acquisition digital media guaranteeing you a Return On Investment. If you would like to know more about how we work with them then get in touch. We can set you up with an online marketing campaign that really adds to your bottom line. Get in touch