Google Analytics 4
5 MIN

Why is there Missing Data in Google Analytics 4?

Ken Bandong
April 21, 2023

There will come a time when you may notice that some of your data in Google Analytics 4 is missing. It could be a particular event you have set up, user traffic from a particular campaign or you have much lower data from another tracking platform you’re using. In this blog, we will discuss the possible reasons why you have missing data in Google Analytics 4 and provide ways we can do to resolve or prevent it from happening.

REASONS and SOLUTIONS

  1. GA4 Tracking installation.
  2. GTM Tracking installation.

Both 1 and 2 are rookie mistakes that can sometimes happen when you are starting to use Google Analytics 4. If you’re not familiar with installing a Google  tag on a website, we definitely recommend asking the help of your developer to ensure tracking is set up correctly. If you’re using GTM to install GA4, it is important to make sure that tags are set up correctly and the GTM version is published.

  1. Filters

Applied filters could be one of the reasons why you do not see all the data in your GA4 Property. If you wanted to check on the traffic you made on the website, and you do not see your test traffic in real-time reports, it is possible that a filter was set up to exclude internal traffic to not affect getting insights on your collected data.

  1. Data Sampling

When you’re looking at your GA4 Report that has a large amount of data and you see an orange exclamation mark icon on the top, this could indicate that there is sampling in your reports. This happens when you exceed the quota limit that’s applied to your GA4 Property type to give you an overview to check on your data at a higher level. Thus, only showing a sample of your data.

  1. Data Thresholding

Data Thresholding happens when you have a lower number of collected data for a particular event or dimension. It is applied to your report when you have Google Signals enabled to protect your user's privacy. To prevent this, you may disable Google Signals completely or change the reporting identity in your GA4 to not use Google Signals.

  1. Cardinality

This refers to the number of unique values in your report. Google did not provide an exact value of what is the limit. However, I have a hunch that it’s the same with Universal Analytics where the limit is set to 5000 rows. On another note, using a high cardinality dimension(dimensions with more than 500 unique values) can also hit the cardinality limit for GA4. In this case, the report would show (other) rows to your report to make up for the missing rows.

  1. Using GA4 Explore Reports

By default, Data Retention in GA4 is set to 14 months only. However, when using the Explore Reports in GA4, it is important to note that this section can only show 2 months of data by default as it is what is set in your Data Retention Settings. You have the option to change this to 14 months to look at more data when using Explore Reports.

  1. Processing Time

GA4 may take up to 24-48 hours to process the data that you have collected. In this case, it is highly recommended to check on the data collected today on the latter half of the next day when the data aggregation is likely completed.

  1. Missing Currency Parameter

If you have configured E-commerce Tracking for Google Analytics 4, it is important to set the Currency Parameter as this is a required parameter to ensure that there is data under Monetization reports in GA4.

  1. Tools that block GA Tracking 

There are different browsers or browser extensions that users may use to block Google Analytics from collecting data such as Adblock or Brave browsers.

  1. Bug

A possible Google Analytics 4 Bug announced by Google affects how data is being reported in GA4. Usually, this issue resolves on its own but there may be times the fix applied isn’t retroactive. Therefore, there will be missing data on the dates the bug happened.

It is important to understand what is causing the missing data in Google Analytics in order to address the issue and ensure that you are collecting accurate and complete data. As the data collected is vital to gather meaningful insights and help business owners or marketers make better decisions to better improve business or marketing efforts, check areas for improvement to take action on and ultimately save time and money

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gary
Ken has been providing Analytics support and giving insights for 4 years and currently works as an Analytics Specialist at AnalyticsMates and Zen Anchor. He is passionate in providing meaningful insights through data captured in Google Analytics. When not analyzing data, he is frequently backpacking the mountains with his dog and enjoys the serenity of being one with nature.

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