A guide to the Google Analytics 4 Reporting (Part II)

janet wong
5 min readAug 15, 2021


In the Part I article, I’ve covered GA 4’s standard report. As promised, I’m going to share one of the most important and exciting additions- the new analysis feature. G 4’s Analysis module contains techniques for pathing, funnels, segment overlaps, and ad-hoc analysis used to only live in the enterprise version (GA360). For the first time, all users of Google Analytics can create meaningful funnels 🥳

To find the analysis module, you can go under the left navigation panel > Explore > Analysis.

Once you find that module, let’s dive into the details!

New Funnel Capabilities Overview

Under the analysis module, there are two components: Analysis Hub ( a hub that saved all your reports) and Template Gallery ( where you are going to see all the different techniques).

To get started, you can select a predefined funnel analysis template with all the pre-populated data. But to get you familiar with the feature, I’ll start everything from scratch here. By doing it, select the blank template on the analysis hub.

On the left-hand side, there has a lot of different functionality around funnels.

For visualisation, you are given options to change the report from standard to trended funnels, especially you need the funnel to perform over time. (Note that trended funnel is a unique feature that is not even available in GA 360!)

For open funnels, users can enter the funnel on any step. In contrast, if they turn on to the closed funnels, they must start from step 1.

For an elapsed time, this new concept of time has totally changed the user experience. Not only users can measure things by time per page but show you the average time that elapsed between each of these steps.

For the next action, this is used when users want to see the next event visitor did after each step in the funnel. By doing so, you can simply drag the required dimension onto the canvas.

Filter. The component allows you to filter exact conditions by dragging the required dimensions/metrics to the canvas to attain the required results, i.e. drag the country option to see the selected country on the funnel.

In addition, GA 4 allows you to change a variety of things that are happening on the canvas itself by using the Segment ( the LHS of the panel). You can click on the Plus button and create your own segment using the existing templates or builder provided by the reporting.

Funnel Technique — Step Settings

Now, the first component to introduce is the concept of the technique. This is where you can get your option to change your funnel technique. You may notice there don’t have anything on the canvas yet. In order to show the full visualisation, you would need to define your steps. To do so, click on the step options and add the conditions, i.e. first open/visit, organic visitor and session start. You will be given access to dimensions, custom metrics, and events. In our case, we will look at any visitor who visits our website organically stay within 5 mins. While GA 4 provides you with the ability to customise the reporting, do remember to register your parameter. Otherwise, the analysis is going to be a bit challenging to use until you complete the registration.

Funnel Technique — Step Settings. The slide is taken from CXL.

Once you have applied our first three conditions here, you’ll see GA 4 actually calculates all the collected data retroactively. The funnel will show you the number of users who completed each step, while you can hover over to see the visualization in between as well. Another cool thing is that you can interact with the funnel by right-clicking it to create segments or view users. And this starts to show you how analysis works and free form ad-hoc exploration.

Funnel Technique — Audience Building

To create audiences from funnels, you can right-click on any completions or abandonment for further analysis and/or audience activation into Google Ads. You can also right-click from any desired selection in your breakdown table to create even more granular audiences.

Funnel Technique — Audience Building. The slide is taken from CXL.

The last component in the funnel analysis workbooks is that it enables users to undo or redo the changes. You can also export or download these reports in different formats. Moreover, if you want to share the workbook with other users, you are able to do so. And all the features can be found in the right top corner.

Path Technique Overview

Pathing Technique. The slide is taken from CXL.

Another option I would like to briefly go through is path analysis, which is a big improvement compared to what it used to have in UA. Not only has it had the starting points to customise how it looks and interact with the user, but it also gives you the ability to start over the analysis to pick your starting event audit.

Furthermore, the ending point allows you to do backwards pathing, which is something hard to be managed in UA.

Pathing — Find Backward Pathing. The slide is taken from CXL.

Segment Overlap Overview

Segment Overlap. The slide is taken from CXL.

Last, the segment overlap. It is the feature where you can usually find it in the enterprise version of GA, and now everyone has it available. It simply plots different audiences and shows you what overlap was. This is effective when you want to build combined audiences in GA 4. Also, clicking view users from anywhere on the canvas allows you to drill into very granular user-level information for advanced analysis.

In a nutshell, if you would like to learn more about the reporting. Here’re a few resources taken from CXL, basically showing you the best practices around building the templates. And hopefully, this article and the following tutorials will give you a lot of information you need to know.



janet wong

“Everything is theoretically impossible, until it is done.” Robert A. Heinlein.