It’s been over a year since the marketing community started responding to the technical prowess and capabilities of the enhanced features available through Universal Analytics—the next generation of the popular Google Analytics platform.
Cardinal Path has been fortunate enough to work with many early adopters, who have come to us to help leverage Universal Analytics to deliver unprecedented customer insights, true marketing line-of-sight, and business value to clients.
According to a survey Cardinal Path conducted of its top clients and partners, a little over half of respondents have already migrated to Universal Analytics,and over a third are running in parallel (a crucial first step to completing a full migration). The rest of the respondents are thinking about how to get started.
How about you? Are you ready to migrate to Universal Analytics?
Regardless of where you are in the process of planning, here are 6 reasons to prioritize your migration to Google Universal Analytics.
1) You do not want to delay the ability to activate the User ID functionality.
The User ID is a Universal Analytics feature that you can use to associate multiple sessions (and any activity within those sessions) with a unique ID. When you send an unique ID and any related engagement data to Google Analytics, all activity is attributed to one user in your reports. This means you can connect multiple devices, sessions, and engagement data with the User ID.
Plus with the User ID, you can get a more accurate user count, analyze the signed-in user experience, and get access to the new Cross Device reports
2) Measurement Protocol is outstanding.
Universal Analytics allows for GA Measurement Protocol on digital devices like game consoles and information kiosks. Measurement Protocol allows developers to make HTTP requests to send raw user interaction data directly to Google Analytics servers. This allows developers to measure how users interact with their business from almost any environment. Developers can then use the Measurement Protocol to:
Measure user activity in new environments.
Tie online to offline behavior.
Send data from both the web and server.
3) Extensibility equals Deeper Insight.
Custom dimensions and custom metrics are like default dimensions and metrics, except you create them yourself. You can use them to collect data that Google Analytics doesn’t automatically track. And in Universal Analytics, you can set ‘hit’, ‘user’, ‘session’ and ‘product level custom dimensions’ on data set types, from cost data, to refund data and even other customized data.
4) Enhanced E-commerce capability.
Google Analytics Enhanced E-commerce enables product impression, promotion, and sales data to be sent with any of your Google Analytics page views and events. With Universal Analytics you can measure:
- Product Impressions
- Product Clicks
- Product Detail Impressions
- Add / Remove from Cart
- Promotion Impressions
- Promotion Clicks
5) Enhanced administrative tools.
To quote Justin Cutroni, Google’s Analytics Evangelist, from a blog post on this very topic:
“Finally! For the first time EVER, yes, EVER, Google Analytics has made a change to its access controls and user permissions. Some may think Google Analytics user permissions is not a very sexy topic, but this is going to make a big difference to those that manage Google Analytics accounts.” http://cutroni.com/blog/2013/03/11/managing-google-analytics-user-permissions/
User permissions are more nuanced and dynamic, provide the ability to monitor the activity of those with site privileges and offer greater security advantages to managers who oversee users.
In addition, it’s easier to do things like ignore referrers, exclude search terms and adjust timeouts.
6) Demographics, Benchmarking and Cohort functionality.
Basically, we’re looking at an unprecedented level of ease and insight into who your users are and how they fit and perform across a spectrum of groups.
There is a bonus reason for why you should migrate to Universal Analytics…eventually, you have to.
Here is a recent quote from Dave Booth, from an article he authored in the March issue of MarketingLand:
“Remember, the upgrade is a two-step process, and this is the important part: if your account isn’t using anything that’s not already supported in Universal Analytics, Google is going to transfer your existing classic Google Analytics web property to Universal Analytics— and they won’t necessarily tell you.
If this happens to you, you’ll see a notice in the tracking code page for the web property. Keep in mind this doesn’t break anything or change anything–your existing code will still work and do all the things it used to do.
Eventually, you will need to upgrade to the new codebase. Most of the new features that are rolling out at breakneck pace are only coming out for Universal Analytics–you won’t get them if you’re still on classic Google Analytics. And, if you’re using things like custom variables, you’ll have to switch them to the Universal Analytics equivalent.
Do you need any more reasons?
Don’t delay. Visit http://www.cardinalpath.com/your-universal-analytics-migration/ today to take a brief survey designed to help you understand the level of effort required to migrate your existing site from its current code to Universal Analytics.
The assessment accounts for the various features you may be using within Google Analytics and what you’ll need to consider for the migration.