Chapter 4: Setting Up a Google Analytics 4 Property (Without UA)

All Universal Analytics (UA) properties will automatically be upgraded to Google Analytics 4 in July 2023.

Website owners are mostly looking forward to the upgrade because of the power features GA4 offers, such as:

  • Improved machine learning and predictive insights
  • Enhanced cross-device tracking
  • Streamlined event tracking
  • Etc.

However, if you don’t have an existing UA property setup, you’ll need to set up Google Analytics 4 from scratch manually.

The good news is, setting up a GA4 property without UA isn’t rocket science.

And in this guide, we’ll walk you through the process—from linking GA4 to your website to configuring GA4 using Google Tag Manager.

Must read: Google Analytics 4 vs. Universal Analytics: 10 Key Differences

Table of Contents

  • How to set up a Google Analytics 4 property without UA
  • How to configure Google Analytics 4 using Google Tag Manager
  • People Also Ask
  • Track and visualize your GA4 properties with Polymer
  • Set up your Google Analytics 4 property now

How to set up a Google Analytics 4 property without UA

To set up a new Google Analytics 4 property, go to their official website and sign in with your Google account. Once you get to the main Google Analytics page, click 'Start measuring.' 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

Remember that these steps are for users who don't have a Universal Analytics property.

If you need to upgrade an existing property, read our guide on How to upgrade to Google Analytics 4 (from UA) instead. 

The Google Analytics 4 setup process involves three steps.

In the account setup step, specify basic information about your Google Analytics 4 account. This includes your account name and data-sharing settings. 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

Click 'Next' at the bottom of the page to proceed. 

In the next step, complete your Google Analytics 4 property settings. Define a property or website name, your preferred reporting time zone, and currency. 

Again, click 'Next' to move on to the final step. 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

The third step is to provide additional information about your business. 

This includes details such as business size, industry category, and Google Analytics 4 objectives. 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

Click 'Create' to proceed with the setup. 

Be sure you agree to the Google Marketing Platform's Terms of Service and Data Processing Terms. Select the checkbox and click 'I Accept' to complete the initial setup. 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

You can opt-in for automated email communications regarding your Google Analytics 4 account and property. Just select the information categories you want to receive and click 'Save' to go to your Google Analytics dashboard

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

Link your Google Analytics 4 property to your website

Head to your "Admin" settings page (gear icon) to start compiling analytics data from your property. 

Under the "Property" column (next to the "Account" column), go to 'Data Streams' and choose your property platform. This could be a website, Android app, or iOS app. 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

Each property type involves different configuration steps. 

For a web stream, the first step is to enter your property's web address and designated data stream name.

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

It's recommended to enable "Enhanced measurement." This enables Google Analytics to automatically track common interaction events, like scrolls, outbound clicks, and file downloads. 

Click 'Create stream' to move on to the next step. 

Finally, you need to paste a snippet of code called a "Google tag" into your own website. This can be done manually or through a website builder/CMS plugin. 

Image Source: Analytics.Google.com

Must read: Google Analytics 4: A Complete Guide

How to configure Google Analytics 4 using Google Tag Manager

Google Tag Manager is an advanced tool that will help you install, modify, and manage multiple marketing tags in one place. 

For Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager lets you control automatic event detection, add more domains, adjust session timers, and more.

Manage automatic event detection

Understanding Google Analytics 4 metrics and dimensions are important to extract actionable data from analytics reports. But first, you need to define the events to track in your data stream.

Using Google Tag Manager, you can quickly enable or disable the detection of certain automatically-tracked events. This includes the following important metrics:

  • Page views
  • Scrolls
  • Outbound clicks
  • Form interactions
  • Video engagement
  • File downloads

Must read: Google Analytics 4 Event Tracking: Ultimate Guide

Configure domains

To enable cross-domain measurement, use Google Tag Manager to specify additional domains that use your Google tag. 

Google Tag Manager lets you define additional domains through custom conditions. Some examples are domains that contain a string of text, subdomains within your root domain, and so on. 

Adjust session timeout

Google Tag Manager lets you adjust the timers for engaged and inactive sessions. 

This directly affects the way Google Analytics tracks "session" events, which are initiated when an app or web page is opened. For your reference, the default session timeout duration is 30 minutes.

Apart from the three settings above, here are other aspects of Google Analytics you can configure with Google Tag Manager:

  • Enable user-provided data
  • Enable data collection from Universal Analytics events
  • Define internal traffic
  • Specify "unwanted" referral web traffic sources
  • Override cookie settings

People Also Ask

Can you use Google Analytics 4 without cookie consent?

Yes, the latest and future versions of Google Analytics work using event tracking, which doesn't rely on cookie data. This makes Google Analytics 4 a must-have, especially since Chrome will phase out third-party cookies by 2024.

How do you disconnect UA from GA4?

To disconnect a UA property from your Google Analytics 4 dashboard, use the following steps:

  • Go to your "Admin" settings page.
  • Under your property, click 'GA4 Setup Assistant.'
  • Click 'Disconnect' next to your connected property.

Is Google Analytics 4 property free?

Yes, Google Analytics 4 properties are free to create and use. However, there are additional assets you can purchase to track visitors better and enable more accurate reporting, like Google Analytics 4 reporting templates and third-party integrations. 

How do I get a Google Analytics tracking code?

Your Google Analytics code or tracking ID is automatically provided upon creating a new property. To see your Google Analytics tracking ID, go to "Admin" settings," click 'Tracking Info,' and select 'Tracking Code.' 

Do you need a new Google Analytics account for GA4?

If you already have a Google Analytics account, you don't need to register a new one for Google Analytics 4. You can use the same account for multiple Google Analytics 4 properties, including any new website or app you manage. 

Must read: Google Analytics 4 for SaaS/Product: Complete Guide

Track and visualize your GA4 properties with Polymer

Thanks to the updated interface, using Google Analytics 4 reports and analysis hub is easier to navigate than ever.

Google Analytics 4 is a powerful tool with a strong feature lineup that generates valuable marketing insights. This includes the traffic acquisition report, audience behavior report, and Google Ads management. 

It also integrates with more robust Business Intelligence solutions like Polymer for more advanced data visualization and reporting capabilities. 

Enjoy the following features by connecting your Go12ogle Analytics 4 property to Polymer:

  • Get AI-based suggestions for data visualizations on your dashboard. 
  • Use the drag-and-drop editor to generate charts, tables, and other visualizations.
  • Consolidate data from all your tools, including Google Analytics 4, Facebook, and Airtable.  

Must read: How to Set Up Google Analytics 4 eCommerce Tracking 

Set up your Google Analytics 4 property now

Google Analytics 4 is the future of web analytics tracking. 

With the event-based tracking model, you don't have to worry about the "Cookiepocalypse."  You can still leverage the Google Analytics tracking magic to get valuable insights on your website traffic. 

Get more done by integrating Google Analytics 4 with Polymer. 

Get started with a free trial today!

Must read: Advanced Google Analytics 4 Features (2023)

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