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Is Google getting rid of my website data?

Published on May 9, 2022


(TL;DR Yes, they are)



This is the first post in our new The Data Debate Series where we write about data problems from a non-technical point of view to keep you informed on the most pressing data issues.

We make no apology for our lack of neutrality on particular subjects. Debate welcome.

Google sunsetting Universal Analytics is a perfect time to reflect on how you would like your data to work harder for you.  

Hear me out. 

Google announced that they were sunsetting Universal Analytics (UA) and creating Google Analytics 4 (GA4).  You can read about it on their website.

But the changeover is riddled with problems.  The most important one being that data that you have on your website users will be lost when UA stops working.  So all the set up you have done to gain user insights, will not be carried over into the new app.  Trends over time of who uses your website will have a blip while you set up the new data.  There are companies racing ahead who have already moved to GA4, some who are talking about it (and likely getting enormous quotes for bespoke software – you don’t need it, read on…) and some who are doing their very best to bury their heads in the sand. 

Which one are you?

We think this is the perfect example of where your information toolkit can do better.  While you build your workflow on a series of  very good, but quite specific SaaS apps, you continue to be at the mercy of changes, updates and legacies.  Our modern data stack solves these problems for you, including problems that you didn’t even know you had. 

If you sit down at your desk each morning and log into Google Analytics, or you have tasked someone with sending you a weekly report on your website activity, then this is an excellent opportunity to upgrade your data flow. 

But, you say, you’ve looked into it and it is expensive and time consuming.  You don’t have the capacity, budget or even the headspace to build something right now.  So you file it in the “too hard” pile and carry on until 2023 when the deadline will act as a focus to find a solution. 

We’re here to help. 

Moving data between products that we use and love like Google Analytics has always been a bit challenging.  But we have been working on creating the solution most accessible to the greatest number of people.  

In this situation, by moving your UA data into a data warehouse such as Snowflake (a partner of ours) and then into a shared workspace, you can migrate to GA4 and seamlessly match up your metrics.  

But why stop there?  You can also add to your metrics for greater insights.  Match your GA4 with your Auth0 data, for example and a whole new level of user information comes together.  

And while you are here, why not take the time for a organisational review on where you spend your time and effort? We see the future of data intelligence being much more about the insights that than infrastructure. Our product hosts and automates your data processes. Let us worry about sunsetting products or tricky updates.

Optimising data makes heroes of the data department.  And we are all about that! It won’t surprise you to hear that Gymshark is all over the move.  This is directly from the Google update:

For example, UK-based fitness apparel and accessories brand Gymshark used Google Analytics 4 to measure across its website and app, allowing the Gymshark team to better understand how users moved through the purchase funnel. As a result, they reduced user drop off by 9%, increased product page click throughs by 5% and cut down their own time spent on user journey analysis by 30%.

Compelling, right?

If it’s your job to feed this information to the rest of the company, they may never know the disaster you have averted by reviewing your data storage this year.  But we will and we salute you.  

We’d love to show you how we are more than just a sticking plaster solution.  Get in touch for a demo and let’s go from there. 

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