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Customize Your Analytics: A Guide to GA4 Custom Dimensions

Unlock deeper insights with GA4 custom dimensions. Learn how to enhance your analytics capabilities with our guide.

Analytics is one of the best ways to get the most out of your website. The more you know about your customers and how they use your website and mobile app, the more data-driven decisions you can make to improve the customer journey. Even better, there are tons of tools that can help you collect and make sense of data.

Google Analytics is one of the most popular reporting and analytics tools for businesses. By tracking events to learn how people are interacting with your mobile app, website, and email marketing campaign, you can fine-tune your strategy to fit your customers.

Custom dimensions are a crucial part of getting the most out of Google Analytics 4. There are several predefined and automatically tracked events, but these existing events might not provide the data you're looking for. If you want to make the most of Google Analytics, here's what you need to know about GA4 custom events.

What is Google Analytics 4?

Google Analytics 4 is the latest version of the Google Analytics platform. GA4 was released in 2020 as a replacement for Universal Analytics, providing a more comprehensive solution for analyzing and tracking website and app performance as well as user behavior. With Google Analytics 4, you can track just about any action a user performs on your website or mobile app.

What are custom dimensions in Google Analytics 4?

When you're setting up events in Google Analytics 4, you can choose between four types of events. Custom dimensions in GA4 allow you to go beyond the basic predefined events to track specific user actions that are relevant to your business. Custom segmentation allows you to break down and organize event data based on custom parameters. When you combine this data with automated marketing tools and software, you can improve the user experience and boost your marketing strategy.

Types of GA4 custom dimensions

Setting up and configuring custom dimensions and metrics to collect data is a key part of harnessing the power of automated reporting. There are three types of custom dimensions in GA4 that you can use to collect data about your customers. You can learn more about these custom dimension types below.

User-scoped custom dimensions

User-scoped custom dimensions are focused on an individual user, allowing you to collect user-specific data about events. You can create a user-scoped custom dimension to track user subscriptions, membership levels, and geographic locations. These dimensions are defined based on a custom user property, which makes them a great tool for tracking user behavior across different sessions and devices.

Event-scoped custom dimensions

Event-scoped custom dimensions are connected to events that happen on your website or mobile app. For example, you could use event-scoped custom dimensions to keep track of purchases on your website, or video engagement and impressions. This data can teach you more about what drives users to make a purchase and what kind of content they're interested in.

Item-scoped custom dimensions

Item-scoped custom dimensions are used for any event that involves an item, such as purchasing a product or adding an item to a cart. With these dimensions, you can track events related to a particular product or product category, so you can organize your online store to make it easier for people to find the products they're looking for.

Benefits of custom dimensions in Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 is a powerful tool in the right hands, and custom dimensions are a big part of that. With custom events and dimensions, you can get detailed reports about your users and how they use your website or mobile app. There's a long list of benefits that make custom dimensions in Google Analytics 4 a key part of data reporting best practices.

Greater flexibility

The default GA4 events and dimensions only allow you to track certain types of data, but every business has different needs when it comes to collecting and analyzing data. With custom dimensions and event parameters, you can track everything that's relevant to your business. Do you need to track purchases to figure out how to optimize your online store? Do you want to figure out which blog posts drive the most traffic to your website? With custom dimensions, you can easily collect and segment data that you can use to make data-driven decisions for your business.

Enhanced segmentation

Contextualizing data is such an important part of gaining insights, especially when you have an overwhelming amount of data. Custom dimensions in GA4 allow for enhanced segmentation, which means you can create a custom dimension for specific groups of users for more targeted, in-depth analysis. You can use the data you collect about specific user segments to target specific groups in your marketing campaign, which can ultimately lead to a more successful campaign.

Deeper insights

Basic data can only tell you so much about your website. It's nice to know how many users visited a page or watched a video, but that doesn't tell you the complete story. Custom dimensions and metrics allow you to get a more detailed picture of how people interact with your website or app. For example, you could create a new custom dimension for the author of your blog posts to figure out which authors' blog posts are the most engaging.

Better reporting

When you use segmentation in Google Analytics, you can make comparisons that provide valuable information about users. For example, you can look at how user behavior varies based on different product categories or regions. These comparisons can help you learn how to optimize different parts of your app or website to better serve your customers.

Improved understanding of user journey

With custom dimensions, you can track every stage of the user journey so you can optimize it. Whether you want to look at the acquisition or conversion process, you can find the exact data you're looking for with the new custom dimensions used in GA4.

How to set up GA4 custom dimensions

Now that you know the basics, it's time to get GA4 custom dimensions set up for your website or app. Fortunately, everything in Google Analytics 4 is streamlined to make the process simple for you. Here's a quick breakdown of how you can set up custom dimensions.

Decide what to track

The first step is figuring out what you want to track. While you're thinking about what you want to track, check GA4's default setup to make sure those events aren't being tracked already. It's always easier to use pre-defined definitions and events if they're available. You might want to look at blog post engagement by author, or maybe you want to segment users by region to analyze user behavior. In any case, figuring out how you want to use GA4 is the first step.

Send data to GA4

If you want to track something through GA4, you need to make sure that data is being sent to GA4. This requires modifying the tracking code on your website, which means you have to have a basic understanding of coding. Keep in mind that the specifics of this tracking code can vary quite a bit, so certain custom dimensions may be more complex. If you're not comfortable updating the tracking code on your website, you can always hire a developer to help you out.

Register your custom dimension

Custom dimensions are set up as event parameters in Google Analytics 4. What this means is that the event parameter name you choose when creating custom dimensions needs to match the event parameter name in your tracking code. Here's a step-by-step breakdown of how you can register custom dimensions in GA4:

  • Go to the GA4 property where you want to set up the custom dimension
  • Navigate to "Custom Definitions" from the left-hand menu
  • Click on "Create Custom Dimensions" Enter the "Event Parameter Name"
  • This should match the parameter name you're sending in your tracking code
  • Enter a "Description" for the custom dimension (optional). Click "Save"

Use your custom dimension

Now that you've got everything set up, you can use your custom dimension in Google Analytics 4. You can use your custom dimensions as a filter in reports or a breakdown dimension, and you can also create new segments based on your custom dimension. Before you push any live changes, you should test any changes you've recently made to your tracking setup. You should also consider privacy regulations and how they apply to the data you're collecting.

Gather insights using custom dimensions in Google Analytics 4

Google Analytics 4 is a great tool if you want to see user properties and gain insights that help you make data-driven decisions to improve your app or website. With custom dimensions, you can get the most relevant data to optimize the customer journey.

Using the right tools can save you time and make your marketing strategy more effective. With analytics and marketing tools from Mailchimp, you can optimize your marketing strategy and create a better user journey. You can even integrate Google Analytics with Mailchimp to monitor your email marketing campaign. Contact us today to learn how combining Mailchimp and Google Analytics 4 can benefit your business.

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