GA4: New UI & Features – #1

June 30, 2021 - Written by

Starting from today the new Google Analytics 4 interface is being rolled out in all accounts! It is much more than a reset of the User Interface, as new features have been released at the same time making GA4 ultra flexible and hyper user custom!

The main innovations are 3:

  • New Interface, Attribution Settings and Report Customization
  • Advertising Workspace
  • Library Collection

All the topics will be split into three separate posts so that we can analyze in detail the main aspects of each one. So let’s start with the first point, which we unpack in turn into three sections!

GA4 New UI

Opening the GA4 panel this morning, I feel slightly off-guard by this change but starting digging into it I must say that it’s not really bad!

First of all, as you can see, the opening of the property no longer takes the user to the Real Time section but to the dashboard that was previously known as Overview and which is now called “Report Snapshot” (1) On the left, the menu (2), which opens on hover- is grouped into 4 macro areas: Reports, Explore, Advertising and Configure; below in the footer you will always find the gear icon that will take you to the Admin section of the property.

GA4: Reports

By clicking on Reports we are faced with this new screen:

  1. The reports are now arranged by “Collection” that can be modified using the Library (we will see more in the third post dedicated to the news of GA4). By default, the collections are App Developer, Life Cycle and User.
  2. The reports dedicated to Firebase (App Developer) that were previously in display mode are immediately visible at a glance, while Events and Conversions flow are included into the Engagement report.
  3. As mentioned, Library allows you to modify the Collections
  4. At the top right you will find a pencil that allows you to edit the individual reports as we will see shortly

GA4: Exploration

By clicking Exploration we are redirected to the previous “Analysis Hub”: there are no significant changes as in the previous case, you can see it from the interface.

GA4: Advertising Workspace

This function will also be the subject of the next article but, very quickly, the section allows you to analyze Advertising data – not only Google Ads but all campaigns – by comparing attribution models and conversion paths. If we want to make a comparison with the previous version of Analytics, this includes the reports dedicated to attribution and the multichannel funnel.

One note but important: the data in the reports start from 06/14/2021!

GA4: Configure

As per the label this is the area dedicated to the configuration. The Events and Parameters, the Conversions, the Audiences and the Debug view come together.

All much less distracting and more comfortable so far, right?

GA4: Attribution Settings

Obviously, the surprises inside the Admin interface level could not be missing: in this section we find a new label called “Attribution Settings”.

By clicking inside the section you will find yourself in front of two boxes: the first dedicated to the attribution model for reports and the second to the lookback window.

GA4: Reporting Attribution Model

In this first box we can decide which will be the basic attribution model for the reports in GA4. By default “Cross Channel last click model” is set and if it is modified, the change will be applied to all conversion and revenue data, even the historical ones. Sessions and users are not interested in any changes. At the moment two models you find in the screenshot are available, but all the main attribution models we already know should be on their way.

GA4: Lookback Window

Pay attention: keep in mind that the modification of these parameters involves all the GA4 data from the moment of the change onwards! Via the lookback window we can determine how far back in time we can go to consider a touchpoint within the Conversion pathing.

Tip: Before using the new two features, thoroughly analyze all the different attribution scenarios, otherwise you will create attribution errors that cannot be overwritten!

GA4: Report Customization

And now we come to the most complex part regarding this first post: we are talking about the possibility of customizing the reports inside the interface for each user or to put it better … each user can modify the reports inside GA4. Look at top right of the reports and you can find a pencil. If you click on it, a layer similar to the one we see in the screenshot below will open a layer (Reports> Life Cycle> Acquisition> Traffic Acquisition)

As we can see, the customization of the single report is split into 4 areas:

  1. Report Data: here we select the dimensions that can be inserted as primary and the metrics that will be part of the report; you can shift them via drag’n’drop. In the example below I have selected “Hostname” as the new dimension and “Returning Users” as the new metric.

2) Charts: in this case I can decide whether or not to display one of the graphs (click on the eye) or change the graph completely (in this case I don’t see the second and I put the first as a Bar Chart)

3) Report Template: by clicking on this element, I can decide whether or not to send additional data to this report. Once the unlink is generated, I can’t go back … so watch out!

4) Summary Cards: I can build a new card, which will be available in the snapshot report with full custom size, metrics and structure

If you are happy with it, you can click on “Save” in the configuration report and the new version will replace the previous one!

First Impressions

As you can see GA4 becomes more and more user centered, making each user much more independent than the Universal version, and providing a degree of customization never seen before.

If these first features have left you speechless, wait for the next posts (which will be written soon) to see some good ones!

Stay tuned for more!

Comments 2 Replies to “GA4: New UI & Features – #1”
  1. Hello Enrico! Wonderful insights you have provided here about GA4 (Google Analytics 4), really appreciated! We have installed GA4 tag on our website here https://www.beckandbulow.com, unfortunately GA4 is not tracking our visitors yet, it’s been more than 3 months since we added GA4 on our website! We are unable to find out where it went wrong, or did we miss anything! Can anyone help about where we are missing to track visitors in GA4, still we are using traditional Google Analytics only just because GA4 is not tracking visitors, we really appreciate if anyone who got same experience, and overcome the issue! Thank you so much for this wonderful post! Keep it up!

    • Hi Chris,
      thanks for your kind comment!
      Sure we can try to get a look at your problem but we need to access your GTM and make some tests.
      Could you please drop a line at: info @ analyticsboosters . com?
      thanks

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