Introducing Apollo for Google Analytics 4!
Search Discovery launched Apollo in 2020 to help organizations automate and improve the quality of their analytics implementations. Though we rolled out the tool first to Adobe users, we’re excited to announce that you can now use Apollo to automate your Google Analytics 4 implementations!
Apollo works like the mission control of your analytics instance. If you ever wished it was easier or faster to set up and maintain an analytics implementation, read on!
What is Apollo?
Apollo is the world’s first analytics management system. Consider the impact of tag management systems on the digital analytics industry. Apollo represents the next big improvement in the field.
Apollo is a SaaS solution that serves as mission control to coordinate complex analytics management. It’s what connects the goals of the stakeholders to your analytics instance.
It works by providing users with over a thousand preloaded best-practice business requirements. Once you choose the business requirements that match the questions that your stakeholders want to be answered about your site or app, Apollo then does the following:
- Architects an ideal solution design
- Automates data layer and tagging specifications
- Configures the tag management system
- Automates data quality for the data layer
- Accelerates migration to GA4 (see our forthcoming post in which Anne Wilson uses Apollo to migrate from Universal Analytics to GA4 in under 40 seconds!)
Why might you need Apollo?
You might need Apollo if you want to implement, update, maintain, or migrate an analytics instance. Though it helps with setup, Apollo isn’t a one-shot thing: Apollo can help you get into GA 4, then help you maintain, govern, and automate your implementation on an ongoing basis.
Adam Greco has written volumes about the struggles analytics programs have today and the features and benefits of using Apollo to address those problems. Here’s a non-exhaustive list of why analytics implementations underperform:
- No business requirements: Requests for data lack clear requirements
- Lack of best practices: Implementations are only as strong as the original architect
- Manual implementation: It’s a time-consuming process to tag and maintain without a data layer
- Poor data quality: Data QA is arduous and not developer-friendly
- Reporting gaps: There are often gaps between implementation and reporting
- Siloed implementation & documentation: These can get out of sync quickly
The good news is that we developed Apollo specifically to address the pain points these problems cause.
How you can use Apollo with GA4 for analytics management
Whether you’re creating a new Google implementation or whether you need to map an existing Google implementation into Apollo, we make it fast and easy to do so. We’ll cover both of these processes below, and while they seem involved, note that once you’ve applied Apollo to your Google instance, you’ll immediately gain all the features and advantages Apollo offers.
Create a new Google implementation with Apollo
Property setup in Apollo involves providing API credentials, GTM container (we’ll cover this extensively in a forthcoming post), and Google Analytics data stream details. From there, Apollo setup happens in three easy steps.
Step 1. Design
The Design module of Apollo is where the key aspects of the analytics implementation are defined. These include business requirements, events, and attributes. During the design phase of the implementation, the analytics team should work with stakeholders to identify which of the Apollo business requirements are needed to help improve the website or mobile app. Business requirements can be selected in one large effort or gradually, by adding new requirements each week or month.
Step 2. Documentation
Best practices in analytics implementations dictate that an organization use both a data layer and a tag manager to capture all the data necessary to satisfy business requirements. But, for most organizations, business requirements, data layers, and tagging specifications are built manually and are often disconnected from one another.
Apollo fixes this problem by automatically connecting business requirements, data layer specifications, and tagging configurations. Using a relational database, Apollo programmatically builds your data layer and tagging specifications AS you select business requirements. This helps ensure that nothing is missed during your implementation.
Step 3. Deployment
Expedite your analytics management in Google Analytics 4 with Apollo
Apollo can rapidly power your analytics implementation to do more for your organization. It saves you time, manual effort, and money by allowing you to automate your processes around specific, best-practice business requirements in an integrated manner. Once you set up or begin to manage your Google Analytics or GTM instance in Apollo, your data quality is maintained, and you’ll be able to easily manage your implementation and communicate insights to stakeholders to drive business decisions.
Stay tuned for our next post about how to use Apollo to easily migrate from Universal Analytics to Google Analytics 4!