Google Analytics Update
When you install Google Analytics on your church’s website, you can measure page views, events, and transactions. However, Google has recently made a major update to Universal Analytics (UA), also known as Google Analytics 3 (GA3). This product update will change how your website interacts with Google.
GA4 is the next generation of analytics. It’s a major technology leap that releases deeper, more accurate information about how users are engaging with your website, ultimately shifting how you connect with your community online.
How Does Google Analytics 4 Update Impact Your Church?
So how does the Google Analytics 4 upgrade impact your church? You will need to take action quickly to preserve your historical data and get a head start on data collection on the new platform. As you learn and optimize how you use GA4, you’ll have deeper user insight into how to connect with your website visitors. This new window of opportunity has the potential to help you devise a more intelligent marketing strategy for your church.
As GA3 transitions over to GA4, the data you learn about your customers will shift completely. You’ll be able to view your analytics through a deeper lens of user engagement across platforms. Rather than a photograph into your user journey, now you’ll have a movie. But how will GA4 impact your church? Let’s talk through it.
Churches Need to Plan & Act Fast
GA4 was launched in October 2020 to give users an opportunity to transition to the upgrade. Because as of July 2023, Google Analytics 3 will no longer capture new data. At some to-be-decided date in the future, your church will lose access to its historical data in GA3 when the platform is fully decommissioned.
Churches need to begin planning now in order to begin collecting data in GA4 they can learn from when GA3 is discontinued. You need expert knowledge and guidance through this process, from the transition to the setup to the implementation. Those who do not act quickly risk losing valuable data and insight into their website activities.
The experts at Missional Marketing are advising their church networks to install GA4 now, in concurrence with GA3, to begin collecting data throughout the transition process. This way, once GA3 ends, churches will not suffer a lag in analytics.
Another motivating factor for churches to move quickly is to gain a head start learning the new GA4 reporting features and realizing its advantages. Churches have an opportunity to devise early use cases for Google Analytics and be ahead of the curve.
GA4 Will Change Your Marketing Strategy
The Google Analytics 4 upgrade will guide your marketing strategy with analytics that help you customize your content based on behavioral analytics. These deeper audience insights will help you understand how potential church visitors and current members are using your website. The new reporting features will help you see how your website marketing strategy is performing, so you can make smart decisions about what to tweak.
Say you want to bring awareness to your congregation about an event. GA4 goes beyond the total behavior of website users to give you insight into how your target user perceives and engages with the content.
The enhanced audience segmentation allows you to track users within specific audience categories across their journey, even when they switch from a desktop computer to their mobile phone.
Due to our expertise in managing Google Ad Grant campaigns for churches, we're able to provide estimated ranges of what sort of results managed Google Ad Grant funded campaigns can achieve. This tool will ask you a few questions and then project monthly advertising value and website visitors from a managed Google Ad Grant.
GA4 Will Provide Deeper Insights Into User Behavior
The GA4 upgrade will transform your window or perspective on how to optimize your website performance.
GA4 uses event-based tracking that allows for more accurate behavioral analysis while emphasizing user engagement over vanity metrics.
With the multi-streamed/cross-platform tracking, you can track user behavior across devices, whether they are accessing your brand from a website or an app. The data streams available through GA4 give you a broader view of how users are behaving rather than capturing individual snapshots of behavior.
With GA3, multiple sources of data had to be filtered in order to interpret your metrics. But with GA4, all of your data is integrated and connected through data streams. Rather than creating separate views to consume data, GA4 allows marketers to develop custom reporting they can recycle again and again. As you develop these custom reports, you can determine and monitor the events or activities that matter most to your church.
With new laws, data privacy is a greater concern than ever before. Google Analytics 4 honors these new requirements while providing greater insights. Missional Marketing is committed to staying on top of these new trends and monitoring how this upgrade is impacting its network of churches.
Reach out to a Missional Marketing expert today to learn how you can stay at the forefront of this significant digital shift.