Google Analytics 4 vs. Universal Analytics

Set up Universal Analytics on Shopify

Advanced Enhanced E-commerce Setup

FAQ on Universal Analytics Setup

⚠️ As Google has already sunsetted Universal Analytics, setting up UA is not valid anymore.

Having replaced UA, Google Analytics 4 is your default data analytics service now. Therefore, you are recommended to set up GA4 with the right settings applied.

You can take a look at our Shopify GA4 Guidebook to discover more about how to set up & use Google Analytics 4.

We have prepared this guidebook to help you complete the most ideal Google Analytics 4 setup on your Shopify store so that you can fully utilize it.

Chapter 1

Google Analytics 4 vs.
Universal Analytics

Shopify Universal Analytics Chapter 1 illustration

Google Analytics 4 (aka GA4) is the new and default version of Google Analytics which has been enriched by a more functional and user-friendly interface along with countless additional reporting services.


What you should do


Here’s the game plan:

First and foremost, you need a solid Shopify GA4 integration to take full advantage & get all the reports and accurate results based on your data.

To integrate Shopify & GA4, you have a couple of options:

The Google Sales Channel app

 native solution to provide you with basic ecommerce events on your Shopify store.


hopify app distinguished by having the most reviews in its category, has been providing a comprehensive GA4 integration for Shopify for the past two years, culminating in a community of more than 2000 satisfied customers.

Other Shopify GA4 Apps

A collection of various solutions that offer different features and levels of GA4 integration for Shopify, broadening the spectrum of choice based on individual needs and preferences.

You should keep in mind that although Shopify’s native integration via the Google Sales Channel provides a baseline for tracking, it does fall short in capturing some important e-commerce events such as “view item list,” “select item,” “refund,” and “promotions.” 

If your needs are minimal and basic tracking is sufficient, the native integration may be suitable.

The Analyzify app provides a comprehensive GA4 e-commerce tracking solution for Shopify, capturing all essential events and parameters. 

With Analyzify, you also gain access to exceptional professional support, helping you with the integration and reporting.

To secure a Shopify & GA4 integration that works, check this out: Shopify & GA4 integration.


What is the difference between Google Analytics 4 and Universal Analytics?

Although it’s commonly believed that Google Analytics 4 is simply a newer version of Universal Analytics, it’s not really the case actually. Here are how they differ in functionality in short:

Different data models: GA4 uses an event-based data collection method whereas UA does a hit-based one.

Cross-data reporting: You can easily track multiple devices on a single GA4 property using different streams while UA is quite limited in doing so.

Enhanced Google Signals: GA4 allows you to use Google Signals on a much deeper level.

Unlock All GA4 Ecommerce Reports. Integrate and Learn with Analyzify.

⚠️ As Universal Analytics has already stopped working, creating a UA account is not valid anymore.

Since Google made GA4 the default version of Analytics; you should create a Google Analytics account to set up Google Analytics 4. 

To create a Google Analytics account and set up GA4, check out this guide: Setting Up and Optimizing GA4.

Step 1: Create Google Analytics Account

Visit Google Analytics and follow the steps to create an account.

Fill in the account name in the 1st tab: Account Setup, and move to the next second tab: Property Setup

After you add your property name, you will find the “Show Advanced Options” link below the time-zone and currency settings. Click and that’ll give you an option for creating a Universal Analytics account.

Toggle on “Create a Universal Analytics property” (right-top-corner) and choose if you also want to create a connected GA4 account.

Step 5

Fill in the rest of the basic information and you are done! Congrats, you now have a Universal Analytics account.

Chapter 2

Set Up Universal Analytics
on Shopify

Shopify Universal Analytics Chapter 2 illustration

⚠️ As Google has already discontinued Universal Analytics, you are not allowed to set up UA on Shopify.

Instead, you should integrate Google Analytics 4 with your Shopify store. Check out this guide to integrate GA4 with your Shopify store.

Since you can't set up Universal Anaytics on Shopify, the first method below is not valid.

Method 1: Native (Recommended for Non-Shopify Plus Clients)

Shopify’s native Universal Analytics integration works fine. However, it is missing some important features (such as checkout funnels) and settings. We have prepared this tutorial to guide you through the best possible setup structure. Just follow along!

Basic Shopify Universal Analytics Setup

Copy your tracking code from Google Universal Analytics. Admin (Left-bottom) > Tracking Info > Tracking Code PS: If you are not seeing Tracking Info > Tracking code sections on the admin. You are most probably in Google Analytics 4 property. Follow the steps above to create a Universal Analytics account or switch your account.

Go to Shopify Admin > Online Store > Preferences and paste your Universal Analytics tracking code here.

It should look like this after you save it. Tick the checkbox on “Use Enhanced Ecommerce.” In the steps, we will do some settings on your Universal Analytics property to have the Enhanced E-commerce work in the best possible way.

Activate Checkout Behaviour Funnel

Google Universal Analytics offers a Checkout Behaviour Funnel to show you the user behavior during the checkout steps. That doesn’t work for Shopify merchants by default. You will need to make a few tweaks and settings.

You can also check out Shopify’s official Google Analytics setup guide.

The funnel includes: Contact Information, Shipping Method, Payment Method and Purchase. By following the steps below, we will activate the Universal Analytics Checkout Behaviour Funnel on Shopify.

Step 1: Copy the code block below.

The following code block will allow pass the relevant checkout steps information from your Shopify store to Google Analytics in the required format. Make sure to copy it correctly and move to the next step.

     ga("require", "ec");
 var ShopifyCheckoutstep = Shopify.Checkout.step;
 switch (ShopifyCheckoutstep) {
   case "contact_information":
     ga("ec:setAction", "checkout", {
       "step": 1,
       "option": "contact_information"
     ga('send', 'event', 'checkout', 'contact information', { nonInteraction: true });
   case "shipping_method":
     ga("ec:setAction", "checkout", {
       "step": 2,
       "option": "shipping_method"
     ga('send', 'event', 'checkout', 'shipping method', { nonInteraction: true });
   case "payment_method":
     ga("ec:setAction", "checkout", {
       "step": 3,
       "option": "payment_method"
     ga('send', 'event', 'checkout', 'payment method', { nonInteraction: true });

Paste the code block into “Additional Google Analytics JavaScript” section under the Online Store > Preferences > Google Analytics and SAVE it.

Note 1: If you are not seeing the related section, that means you haven't completed your standard setup yet. Follow along the tutorial above and then come back there.

Note 2: If you have already have similar codes there, you should just replace it with this one. If you have Google Tag Manager code there, please remove it - it never works and only causes troubles.

Go to Universal Analytics > Admin > E-commerce Settings and enable both options.

Note: If you are not "E-commerce Settings" on your Google Analytics admin menu, that means you are using a Google Analytics 4 property. Either switch your property to Universal Analytics or create a new UA property following our tutorial above.

Add the following three steps under Checkout Labeling > Add Funnel Step. The names should be identical as it is connected with the code above.

  • Contact Information
  • Shipping Method
  • Payment Method
Don’t forget to SAVE.


We have now completed setting up the Checkout Funnels on Shopify. You will start seeing data on Universal Analytics > Conversions > E-commerce > Checkout Behaviour section.

You can check the official Google’s guide to “Measure Checkouts” on Universal Analytics if you want to learn more about the topic.

Method 2: Analyzify

You can benefit from Analyzify to have a flawless GA4 setup and get a deeper understanding of your data. 

It helps you have the most proper & error-free integration with more detailed reports, including 30+ integrations for your Shopify store through Google Tag Manager. 

Method 3: Other Shopify Analytics Apps

Depending on your needs and preferences, you might want to choose another Shopify Analytics app. To help you further, we have prepared a list. There are many other Shopify Google Analytics apps in the market that we covered on this page.

Chapter 3

Advanced Enhanced E-commerce Setup

⚠️ As Google has already sunsetted Universal Analytics, the section below is not valid anymore.

You can check out our comprehensive Shopify & GA4 integration guide to have a proper e-commerce setup.

Apply the following recommended Universal Analytics settings and best practices to get the best out of Google Analytics 4. You will find the step-by-step tutorials and deeper explanation at the section below the links through the links.

  • Enable Google Data Signals
  • Set Referral Exclusions for Payment providers & checkout processors
  • Make sure to have UTM parameters on your external Ads
  • Connect Google Analytics 4 with Google Search Console & Google Ads
  • Setup Enhanced e-commerce & Checkout steps for an advanced reporting
  • Cross-domain Tracking: If you are using multiple domains
  • UTM setup: For your Facebook, Pinterest, and other external traffic to have proper “Traffic Channels” reports
  • Organize and make your Universal Analytics better
    • Content grouping
    • Internal search
    • Remove query parameters
    • Exclude internal IPs

Step-by-Step Tutorials:

We have prepared detailed tutorials to enhanced your Universal Analytics setup and to make sure your reporting will be useful and accurate. Check the following links and apply them one by one.

Chapter 4

FAQ on Universal Analytics Setup

Shopify Conversion Tracking Chapter FAQ

Since Google has already stopped Universal Analytics, you need to use Google Analytics 4 as your default data analytics tool.

As UA has already stopped working, you can follow our step-by-step tutorial to create a new GA4 property.

As Universal Analytics is not valid anymore, you can create a new GA4 property to start tracking data.

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the new and default version of Google Analytics. Even its first version has many features that weren’t available in Universal Analytics (UA), and it will only get better with time.

Analyzify’s core setup is based on GA4, hence we strongly recommend using GA4 with Analyzify so that you can take advantage of the new and default version of Google Analytics.

No. GA4 and UA are completely different properties. You will not lose your existing data in UA, but keep in mind that it also won’t be carried over to GA4.

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is the new and default version of Google Analytics, whereas Universal Analytics (UA) is the old version. We have a long-form content where you can read a detailed comparison between GA4 and UA.