Google, GA4, and the rising importance of data analytics - ClickZ

30-second summary:

  • The rapid, incremental growth in data means analytics are essential to staying ahead now and in the future
  • Marketers need to lean on data to make better, informed decisions
  • It is critical to transition to GA4 by July 1st to avoid losing your data
  • While some use GA4 standalone, tech platforms can help make it less complex

Generative AI and automated content are set to produce a monumental influx of data, text, images, and videos on the web. This, combined with Google’s new – and still evolving – look SERP featuring Generative Search Experiences (SGE), means that the role of data and analytics becomes even more essential to understand what trends are happening in your market and with your content and how it is converting and performing.

Marketers have entered a new content battleground. Not only can brands and people become writers and publishers, but now machines can, too. This is creating a rapid, incremental growth in data and new insights that need to be analyzed and actioned on for those who want to stay ahead of the content marketing curve.

The importance of your website and the role of data analytics

People will always visit websites regardless of how they get there. In an age where consumers demand fast, insightful, and relevant helpful content providing them with a seamless experience is essential to improve content performance.

Over 58% of marketers recently surveyed are not using analytics in their marketing projects.

Data analytics in marketing projects

Source: Data in Analytics Survey, ClicData Report, SearchEngineWatch

Data analytics involves systematically examining raw data to draw meaningful conclusions. This method gives you the ability to understand your marketing, content, and website performance operations at a granular (Read more...). It allows you to:

  • Understand your audience and customers’ needs and intent
  • Highlight trends in your market of vertical
  • Track how your competitors are performing and adapt content strategies
  • See how your website is performing

This, in turn, allows you to:

  • Make data-driven decisions
  • Improve your online customer experience and engagement
  • Guide strategic decisions based on data-driven insights to optimize content better

Organizations, marketers, and machines generate vast amounts of structured and unstructured data. However, as mentioned earlier, the challenge lies in effectively utilizing this information to make informed content marketing decisions.

This is why search engines such as Google offer up new tools to help you with this and why technology platforms offer up integrations into multiple types of data sources and GA4.

GA4 – Google’s next generation of analytics

According to Google, “GA4 represents the next generation of analytics which collects event-based data from both websites and apps.” Focused on machine learning and data visualization, GA4 was built to provide powerful tools for predictive analytics and data-driven insights.

One of its main goals is to help marketers easily understand data in a more visual manner with graphs and charts to make data interpretation easier. By aggregating data – rather than having multiple views – it is aimed to help you better understand the online user journey.

Why transitioning to GA4 is essential

Google will stop Universal Analytics on July 1st this year. After that, the only way to utilize its new analytical improvements is by using GA4.

Of critical importance is transitioning to GA4 to ensure you keep hold of your historical data.

Migration to GA4

Screenshot from June 15th

Read more on SEW: Google Analytics 4: drawbacks and limitations

Universal Analytics (UA) to GA4 – key differences

Understanding the differences between UA and GA4 is crucial for businesses to grasp the unique advantages of migrating.

Difference between UA and GA4

Google Analytics 4 puts event tracking front and center, empowering businesses to monitor a range of user interactions, from video engagement to file downloads. By expanding event tracking, GA4 offers unparalleled insight into user behavior beyond basic pageviews and sessions.

Making the transition to GA4 can be complex, so it is best to follow Google’s guidance below:

Also, ensure you look at and experiment with its Demo Account below;

Transitioning to GA4

GA4 aims to provide digital marketers with more robust audience segmentation capabilities, allowing you to craft custom audiences based on specific user attributes and behaviors. With this enhanced segmentation, you can target your content campaigns with even greater precision and personalized messaging.

Read more on SEW: Three must-have GA4 reports you can build in under 30 minutes

With GA4, marketers can access advanced analysis and insights thanks to its machine-learning capabilities and enhanced reporting.

By leveraging these capabilities, content marketers can optimize their campaigns and produce content types that have results based on actionable data.

Moreover, it helps you understand your customers’ behavior across touchpoints to help personalize content in terms of formats and types.

Data from ChatGPT will grow as the data is collected in GA4 alongside cross-platform data.

Read more on SEW: How ChatGPT is changing SEO

The evolution of data-led insights and in-platform analytics

It is essential for content marketers to know that multiple types of data sets and sources are needed for content marketing success.

Read more on ClickZ: Digital CX is built on good data

This is especially true, with 48% of B2B marketers facing difficulty integrating/correlating data across multiple tools.

Many technology platforms offer integrations with Google Analytics and GA4, such as Salesforce, Adobe, and Tealium.

Depending on your needs, some technology platforms can import data from all the sources you need. This can include integrating GA4 instances and reporting on that data alongside historical UA data. Depending on the platform, users can continue to have an experience that is familiar to them, even as the data is being sourced from GA4.

GA4 data is best utilized alongside multiple data sources and insights; Integrated datasets ensure you have the complete picture of how and where your content is performing from various sources and viewpoints.

For example, below is a screenshot of BrightEdge’s Page Reporting feature. Regardless of where the data is sourced, the user experience remains unchanged, and new GA4 data seamlessly coexists with historical UA data.

In-platform analytics


Advancements in data analytics are helping remove the guesswork from decision-making, offering real-time insights, and serving as a dependable guide for strategic choices. This allows SEOs and content marketers to use data-driven decision-making to inform strategy and improve content performance.

Marketers who can effectively leverage analytics will gain a competitive advantage in the content battleground creating new experiences based on data-driven insights.

Read more on ClickZ: 2023 Customer Experience Imperatives – Merkle

Jim Yu is the founder and CEO of BrightEdge, the leading enterprise SEO and content performance platform.

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