Here’s How We Do GA4 Reporting: A Step-by-Step Guide in Creating Custom Reports

We at Embarque have excelled in helping businesses and high-growth tech startups scale rapidly by leveraging GA4 reporting to craft data-driven SEO strategies, enhancing their online visibility and revenue.

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Helpful summary

Overview: We at Embarque have excelled in helping businesses and high-growth tech startups scale rapidly by leveraging GA4 reporting to craft data-driven SEO strategies, enhancing their online visibility and revenue.

Why you can trust us: Our data-driven approach significantly grew a SaaS company's organic traffic from 40-50 monthly searches to 2,700. Additionally, we helped a downloadable app recover 50% of its peak traffic, reaching 20,000 - 25,000 monthly searches by the end of 2022, through analytics-oriented SEO strategies.

Why this is important: Utilizing GA4 reporting is essential for understanding user behavior and website performance, which informs SEO strategies, leading to improved search rankings, increased traffic, and higher revenue.

Action Points: We recommend businesses integrate GA4 reporting into their SEO approach, focusing on keyword insights, traffic source analysis, content optimization, and conversion tracking for effective online growth.

Further Research: Stay updated on GA4 features and best practices, and continuously adapt SEO strategies based on GA4 analytics to maintain and enhance online presence and performance.

Need help with creating a custom report in GA4?

Feeling swamped with data but still needing important insights? You're not the only one. 

A lot of businesses have difficulty analyzing large amounts of data and actually making use of it to make data-driven decisions That's where creating custom reports in Google Analytics 4 (GA4) can really help. It turns data into something clear and useful.

Embarque knows how critical it is to focus on the metrics that drive traffic and conversions. Our expertise in crafting and implementing SEO content and link-building strategies is complemented by our ability to analyze and interpret complex data. 

In this article, we'll provide a step-by-step guide on how to create custom reports in GA4 that can help you streamline your analytics process for better, faster decision-making.

Why listen to us?

At Embarque, we excel in utilizing GA4 reporting to enhance SEO for businesses, including high-growth tech startups and SaaS companies. Our case studies, like the one with Cleanvoice, demonstrate our prowess. We've successfully used GA4 reporting to identify key performance metrics, leading to Cleanvoice's impressive CTR of 7.8%

This direct experience with GA4 has enabled us to effectively increase traffic and revenue growth through precise and data-driven SEO strategies.

What are reports in GA4?

Reports in GA4 are the dashboards where you can view and analyze your website or app data. These reports are customizable, allowing you to create views that present the information most relevant to your business objectives. For example, you could set up a report to track user engagement or ecommerce performance, giving you insights into how users interact with your site or app.

Reporting in GA4 vs Universal Analytics

The move from Universal Analytics (UA) to Google Analytics 4 (GA4) introduces notable changes in analytics reporting. GA4 uses an event-based model, allowing for more detailed tracking of user actions, compared to UA's session-based focus. Customization is also greatly improved in GA4, providing the flexibility to create personalized reports that zero in on key business metrics.

GA4 offers new engagement metrics, providing a clearer picture of how users interact with your site, unlike UA's traditional metrics like bounce rate. With GA4's cross-platform tracking, you get a unified view of user behavior across different devices and platforms, which was more complex to achieve with UA.

Utilizing advanced machine learning, GA4 delivers predictive insights and trend analysis, capabilities that UA lacks. Moreover, GA4 places a strong emphasis on user privacy, ensuring compliance with current data protection laws, making it a more future-proof solution.

Types of reports in GA4

GA4 introduces a variety of report types that cater to different aspects of your data analysis needs. Understanding these can help you better navigate the platform and tailor your reporting to your specific goals. Here are some of the primary report types you'll find in GA4:

Why reports in GA4 are important?


GA4's custom reports empower you to concentrate on what's truly important for your business. You can select from various metrics and dimensions to build a report that reflects your unique business objectives. This eliminates the clutter of unnecessary data, providing a streamlined view tailored to your needs.

Actionable insights

With GA4, your custom reports do more than just display data; they reveal insights that can directly influence your business strategies. By honing in on the specific key performance indicators (KPIs) that matter to you, whether it's user acquisition, retention, or conversion rates, you can identify where to focus your efforts for maximum impact on your online presence and customer experience.

Time efficiency

In the fast-paced world of digital marketing, saving time means staying ahead. GA4's custom reports swiftly bring the most relevant trends and outliers to your attention. This allows for quick analysis and response, ensuring that you spend less time digging through data and more time implementing improvements.

User-centric analysis

GA4 is designed with a focus on understanding user behavior. Reports in GA4 enable you to track the customer journey more effectively, providing insights into how users interact with your website or app from their first visit to the completion of a purchase. This user-centric approach helps craft strategies that resonate with your audience and foster loyalty.

Integration and connectivity

GA4 reports are built to integrate seamlessly with other Google products, such as Google Ads, Search Console, and Data Studio. This connectivity allows for a comprehensive view of your marketing funnel, attributing conversions and understanding the effectiveness of your advertising efforts across various channels.

How to create a custom report in GA4

Creating a custom report in Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is a straightforward process that can be completed in just a few steps. Here's a quick guide on how to do it:

  1. Access your GA4 account: Start by logging into your GA4 account.

  1. Navigate to reports: From the main dashboard, find the ‘Reports’ section on the left-hand side to view the initial snapshot of reports.

  1. Begin customization: Look for the ‘Customize report’ option, which should be visible on the right side of the page within the Reports section. Clicking this will take you to the report customization area.

  1. Select report cards: In the customization area, you'll be able to add up to 16 cards to your report. These cards are visual representations of the data points you want to track. Scroll through the options on the right side and click on ‘Add Cards’ to include them in your report.
  1. Choose card types: When selecting card types for your custom report in GA4, you have the option to choose from Summary Cards, which offer a quick glance at essential metrics, and Other Cards, which delve into more detailed data visualizations and metrics, allowing you to customize your report to the level of detail that suits your analysis needs.

  1. Save your report: After selecting all the cards you want in your report, it's time to save your work. Click the "Save" button, and a dropdown menu will appear. For best practices, choose the option to "rewrite a new report," which ensures you're starting with a fresh, tailored report.

How to use GA4 reporting for SEO

Obtain keyword insights

Integrating Google Search Console (GSC) with GA4 provides data on top-performing keywords and areas needing improvement. You can use this data to optimize your SEO strategy for specific keywords and track performance​​.

Track overall website traffic 

GA4 allows you to track different traffic sources to identify which ones drive the most visitors.

You can use this information to adjust SEO content strategies and focus on the most effective channels for driving traffic​​.

Monitor traffic flow and identify top-performing content

GA4 gives insights into user behavior, such as the pages they visit and actions taken.

Analyze this data to optimize site content and structure for better user engagement and SEO performance​​.

Track SEO-driven actions

GA4 conversion reports enable you to track conversions from SEO traffic, such as form submissions and product purchases. Analyze conversion data to understand the effectiveness of SEO in driving desired actions on your site​​.

Keep track of landing page views

GA4 helps track the amount of organic traffic directed to specific landing pages. Use this data to determine if traffic needs redirection or if landing pages require optimization for better conversions​​.

Referral traffic analysis for backlink impact

GA4 can track referral traffic and provide comprehensive insights into the most effective external sources. Analyze this data to identify successful backlink strategies and potential partnership opportunities​​.

Final thoughts

Custom reports in GA4 streamline the overwhelming flow of data into focused insights that truly benefit your business. They enable you to customize the view of your data, zero in on pivotal metrics, and gain valuable insights quickly — all of which are key to making informed decisions in today's data-rich environment. GA4 custom reports are vital tools, providing clarity and direction to help you understand and respond to your audience's needs effectively.

If you're eager to unlock the full potential of your data with GA4 custom reports, Embarque is ready to assist. Our expertise in SEO and content marketing, combined with our analytics know-how, equips us to guide you toward the insights that can make a difference. Visit Embarque's website to explore how we can help you leverage data for smarter business decisions.

Julian Canlas

I’m Julian, one of the co-founders of Embarque, which offers productised SEO content marketing services. I’m an SEO content strategist by trade. My line of work involves creating a top-to-bottom SEO content strategy for brands based on their current needs and how well they’re attracting clients through organic search.

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