Google Analytics 4 (GA4) offers advanced tracking capabilities for web analytics. If you already have a GA4 tracking setup on your website and want to move towards a server-side tracking model, it’s important to take certain steps to ensure a smooth transition. In this article, we’ll discuss how to set up dual-tagging for GA4 tracking, which involves duplicating existing tags to collect data for both client-side and server-side hits.
- Set Up a New GA4 Property for Server-Side Dispatch. Setting up a new GA4 property for server-side dispatch is important if you plan to move towards server-side tracking. This allows you to copy existing tags one by one until you have a dual-tagged GA4 setup on your website.
- Use Dual-Tagging for Parity Between Client-Side and Server-Side Measurement. Dual-tagging means duplicating your existing tagging to collect data to a GA4 property for client-side hits and to a GA4 property for server-side hits. This allows you to ensure that your server-side measurement is at parity with your client-side measurement.
- Modify Tags to Collect to the Server. If you intend to move all data collection to your server container, you need to wait until your server-side measurement is at parity with your client-side measurement. At that point, you can modify your tags to collect to the server and remove your dual-tagging setup in the process.
- Consider a Hybrid Collection Approach. You can also choose to collect some data directly from the browser to vendors and have some pass through the server container. This type of hybrid collection is very common and can be a useful approach for many websites.
By following these steps, you can ensure a smooth transition toward server-side tracking while maintaining the integrity of your existing GA4 tracking setup.