How To Use GA4 To Optimize Ad Campaigns

November 16, 2023 Kris Irizawa

How To Use GA4 To Optimize Ad Campaigns

Understand the value of Google Analytics 4 (GA4) and how it can help optimize your ad campaigns

GA4 is a next-generation Google Analytics that helps digital marketers stay ahead of the competition. GA4 provides a comprehensive view of user behavior, conversion tracking, and audience segmentation. By leveraging GA4’s enhanced capabilities and powerful insights, marketers can optimize their ad campaigns more effectively.

GA4 can enable marketers with data-driven decision making to drive better results. In this article, I’d like to introduce some basics on how to use GA4 to help you optimize your ad campaigns.

Understand the value of Google Analytics 4 (GA4) and how it can help optimize your ad campaigns

GA4 is the latest version of Google’s popular analytics tool that enables marketers to track and analyze user behavior and engagement across various channels, including websites, mobile apps, and social media. GA4 offers advanced features like AI-powered insights, event tracking, and cross-device measurement, making it a powerful tool for optimizing your ad campaigns. With GA4, you can get a deeper understanding of who your target audience is, how they interact with your content, and what drives conversions. Armed with this data, you can fine-tune your ad campaigns to deliver more personalized and impactful experiences that drive results.

Set up a GA4 with User Identification to get a comprehensive view of user behavior

Understanding the role of different marketing channels and touchpoints in a user’s conversion journey is critical for marketers. Attribution analysis helps determine credit for these interactions. However, with the shift away from traditional tracking methods like cookies, relying solely on them is no longer enough.

GA4 addresses this challenge by using multiple identifiers like user_id, Google Signal, cookies, and modeling. By utilizing these identifiers, GA4 offers a comprehensive view of user behavior even without traditional tracking mechanisms.

Google Signals

Google Signals is data from sites and apps that Google links to people who have logged in to their Google account. This data link is used for reports across devices, remarketing ads on all devices, and exporting conversion ads across all devices.

After reviewing your privacy policy, we recommend that you enable Google Signals in GA4 since it is turned off by default.



First-party cookies are still a crucial component in Google Analytics to identify an individual user, but it is no longer the main method to identify the user in many analytics tools.

GA4 uses cookies stored on the user’s browsers, which allows you to track users’ activities over time, even after they have left the website.

As we know, the cookie is no longer a reliable method to track users due to various reasons. Instead of cookies, GA4 introduces user_id as the primary way of identifying users on all devices, which will be discussed in the next section.

User ID

User ID is one of the most important features that GA4 has introduced and it’s very useful for tracking user behavior across different devices. It allows you to identify individual users across devices and it is one sure way to ensure analytics tools are identifying the individual user.


More details about User ID for GA4: How to fight back with GA4 against iOS 14.5 data loss

Using Data-Driven Attribution (DDA) reporting as your attribution model

In the world of digital marketing, using an effective attribution model is key to understanding the impact of your campaigns and improving their performance. One such model that has been introduced in GA4 is the Data-Driven Attribution (DDA) reporting. 

This model relies on Machine Learning algorithms to calculate attribution values based on data collected in real-time, instead of using a predetermined formula. With DDA, you can track users across different channels and devices and get insights into user conversions.

DDA is effective when a business invests in multi-channel advertising and needs to track user activities across channels. DDA will help you understand which channels are the most effective for your business and where to invest in ad spending.

By analyzing user behavior and assigning credit to various touchpoints in the customer journey, DDA provides a more accurate picture of what’s driving conversions – making it a go-to for marketers looking to optimize their advertising spend. 

With sophisticated tools like Google Analytics enabling DDA reporting, it’s easier than ever to understand the drivers of attribution to your defined conversions. This allows marketers to focus their budgets on channels that are yielding results, leading to better campaign optimization and higher ROI. 


Using data import for multi-channel performance reporting

As businesses expand their reach across different channels, it’s becoming increasingly important to have a comprehensive understanding of how each channel is performing. That’s where data import for multi-channel performance reporting comes in. 

By importing data from various channels into a single platform, businesses can quickly analyze and measure their performance across different platforms. This not only saves time but also allows businesses to make data-driven decisions that can help improve overall performance. 

Cost-data import lets you compare how much money you made from different campaigns. It takes data from things like email and paid social, joins it with the profit you made, and then calculates how successful each campaign was. You can look at this data in a report called the Acquisition & Non-Google Cost Report. You can also upload new data for ongoing campaigns so that your reports keep up to date.

More details from Google:

[GA4] Import cost data 

[GA4] About Data Import – Analytics Help 

Final Thoughts

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is becoming an indispensable tool for digital marketers, providing actionable insight into your users and campaigns. It offers greater customization, such as setting up User Identification to get a comprehensive view of user behavior, and using Data-Driven Attribution (DDA) reporting as your attribution model, so that you can make data-driven decisions about your digital strategy. 

With Data import and multi-channel performance reports, you are able to analyze the data accurately from various sources to make adjustments accordingly for improved ad performance. 

After setting up the GA4 properly with these features, keep monitoring the outcomes for further improvements in your campaigns. With the data insights offered by GA4, you will be able to efficiently maximize your ad investment and ROI. 

If you want to stay updated with our latest strategies from Eboost marketers, subscribe to our newsletter today!