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I have installed Google Analytics 4 along with Universal Analytics and Google Tag Manager to track traffic to our 4 websites. There are literally hundreds of events (triggers/tags) being tracked now on all 4 through Universal Analytics & GTM.

My understanding from reading (very obtuse!) documentation is that I will need to recreate all GTM tags for all 4 websites for the tracking to work in Analytics 4? I also understand that I can use the same triggers, of course. Is this correct?

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    In my professional opinion, GA4 is not anywhere close to a stable alpha. This is why they've released it but allow you to continue using both...it's a live beta. My recommendation would be to save yourself the headache and not move to GA4 until the software is more mature. Dec 10 '21 at 0:18
  • I am not replacing Universal Analytics. Google says you are supposed run both versions of Analytics in parallel, so you accumulate stats in both.
    – Natalia
    Dec 16 '21 at 14:06
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Mike is correct there: GA4 is not worth using and judging from the number of bugs and absent functionality, it's not likely to be a worthy tool for another year or two. Many companies think to do double tracking, but even this is not worth it at the moment since how we do tracking for it may change too.

Generally, parallel GA4 tracking implementation in GTM depends on how your UA tracking is implemented now. If your current implementation is trivially linear (each event takes a tag and they don't reuse variables for categories, actions and labels), then yes, you will generally have to make a tag for every tag if you want to maintain the linear structure.

You could do it smarter, having a custom JS variable (or a lookup table, depending on a situation) generating the data for your dimensions depending on what has occured. In the latter case, it may be ample to have only one GA4 tag that would use a lot of existing triggers. But that requires quite advanced GTM and JS knowledge.

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  • Nice one. I agree, it really all depends on the type of application (website? progressive web app?) and your tracking requirements. I'd say 90% of the time for something like a basic php website the linear route is just fine. I cross a lot of WordPress sites with over-engineered tracking configurations and nobody has a clue how it works. Dec 16 '21 at 16:50

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