Understanding the Difference Between Events and Conversions in GA4

Author : Ayruz

Insight by: Ayruz

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is a powerful tool for tracking and analyzing user interactions on your website. Two terms, “events” and “conversions,” are often used, and while they might seem similar at first glance, they represent distinct actions in GA4. Understanding the differences between these two metrics is crucial for effectively evaluating the success of your marketing campaigns.

What Are Events in GA4?

Events in GA4 measure specific actions or occurrences on your website. These actions range from button clicks and downloads to purchases, scrolling, and page views. Some events are automatically tracked by GA4, making it easier to understand user behavior. These automatic events include:

  • First_visit: Collected the first time a user visits your website, and GA4 uses this event to create the “New Users” datapoint in reports.
  • Page_view: Reports page views on the page the user is currently viewing.
  • Session_start: Determines when a user’s session begins. After 30 minutes of inactivity, a new session_start event is triggered.
  • User_engagement: Engagement is reported when a user spends at least 10 seconds on the website and is collected periodically.

These automatic events cannot be turned off. Additionally, GA4 allows Enhanced Measurements to automatically track other events, including scrolls, outbound clicks, site searches, video engagement, and file downloads. Moreover, you have the flexibility to create custom events tailored to your specific website goals.

ga4 events

What Are Conversions in GA4?

Conversions in GA4 represent significant actions that users take on your website and are deemed necessary to your business. These actions are often critical metrics of success. Conversions in GA4 replace the concept of goals from Universal Analytics.

To measure a conversion in GA4, you must create a custom event and designate it as a conversion. Each conversion you want to track requires a dedicated event. Everyday events marked as conversions include:

  • Phone calls
  • Destination goals
  • Purchases
  • Downloads
  • Appointment bookings

Some conversions, such as phone calls, must first occur as an event on your site before you can mark them as conversions in GA4.

Vital Differences Between Events and Conversions:

Now, let’s summarize the vital distinctions between events and conversions in GA4:

  1. Scope: Events capture various user actions, while conversions focus on specific, valuable actions.
  2. Purpose: Events help you understand user behavior, while conversions measure the success of your business goals.
  3. Counting Mechanism: Events are counted every time, whereas conversions are typically counted once per session.
  4. Quantity: Multiple events can occur on a single page, while conversions are usually limited to a few.
  5. Configuration: Some events can be tracked automatically in GA4, while conversions require manual setup.

By grasping these differences, you can effectively leverage events and conversions in GA4 to gain valuable insights into user behavior and measure the success of your marketing efforts. This understanding will empower you to make data-driven decisions and optimize your website’s performance.

Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments