Why 90% of your marketing budget goes to waste?

October 13, 2023

No analytics = wasted marketing budget

Wondering why 90% of your budget ends up down the drain?

What if we told you that hundreds of errors in an analytics setup can cost you ad budget, data accuracy, time, and team resources? And who would want that?

a broken piggy bank with coins and dollar bills

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the latest version of Google Analytics that delivers exciting new features and capabilities for analyzing data and making smart business decisions.

Proper GA4 setup is the only way to optimize the budget and fuel the reports. 

Here we collected the most common mistakes in analytics setup that you would want to avoid at any cost.

Creating events when it is not necessary

When you set up events using Google Tag Manager, they automatically appear in your GA4 interface after publishing.

Thus, any additional settings are not required. You wouldn’t want to spend time creating the same event twice, right?

Jeopardizing data safety

GA4 comes with a built-in data retention period of 2 months but you have the option to extend this period to 14 months. This extension applies specifically to exploration reports while standard reports do not have a defined data retention period and will not expire.

Wanna know how to do so? Open the Admin menu, go to Data Settings, select Data Retention, and in the dropdown, choose 14 months. Here you go!

Not setting up your own target audience

GA4 has strong capabilities in creating target audiences. Those audiences help you analyze specific data segments and get a chance to gather valuable insights. For instance, you can create a target audience such as website users, subscribers, and visitors who made a purchase in the last 30 days.

So, to gather historical data, it’s essential to determine a target audience and a specific time period at the beginning of the analytics setup.

a laptop with a dart board and a hand pointing at it

Absence of integration between GA4 & Google Stack

Another crucial thing in the analytics setup concerns the integration of GA4 with other Google products. Naysaying this might result in an inadequate perception of output.

Here we gathered multiple products you can link to your GA4:

  • Google Ads 
  • Ad Manager 
  • BigQuery 
  • Google Lookers Studio 
  • Display & Video 360 
  • Merchant Center 
  • Search Ads 360 
  • Search Console

And don’t forget to check the applicability to your website or app. That’s kinda important, you know.

Not marking events as conversions 

Just so you know, in GA4, conversions are defined in a slightly different way than goals are in Universal Analytics. It automatically links a purchase event with a conversion one but other events need to be set up manually. 

No worries, we got your back: open the Admin menu, go to Events, and mark the chosen event as a conversion.  

Forgetting to mention the currency on your e-commerce site 

If you run a business online, we recommend setting up purchase tracking in GA4. This will help you figure out which traffic channels and campaigns generate more sales.

But here’s a trick: unlike the previous version, the new version of Google Analytics requires adding the transaction currency.

Make sure you enable the currency option in Google Tag Manager and ensure its value follows the international ISO standards (e.g. US dollar as USD, euro as EUR, and so on).

Not excluding internal traffic

When your employees or colleagues browse through your website, GA4 will automatically gather these events. To enhance data accuracy and avoid capturing unnecessary information, the key is to exclude all internal traffic. Doing this makes a real difference in the quality of data you get in your GA4 reports. Cool? Yep, we know.

Using one Google Analytics version per website 

If you're dealing with different versions of a website, like a main one and a subdomain landing page, it's best to have separate analytics for each.

Some folks might think it's okay to send data from both versions to the same place, hoping the system will sort it out, but it's smarter to keep them separate for accurate tracking and analysis. Otherwise, it may lead to an overload in your reports. And who would like to analyze such reports, huh?

From setup to stardom

Congrats! Now, you know how to avoid the most common mistakes in GA4 setup. But there are still many other mistakes that require a setup pro’s touch. 

Remember that the right analytics setup will make your decisions accurate and budgets optimized.

a happy person mastered analytics setup

Stay tuned to get more of Google Analytics 4 insights! ‘Cause we have lots to share.