Step by Step: Setting up an App + Web Property in Google Analytics

In this Step by Step guide, I’ll take you through the three steps you’ll need to go through to set up a new App + Web Property in Google Analytics. Note, this is an update to an earlier blog post covering the same topic, however, in this new post, the initial steps of creating a property can now be done in the Google Analytics interface rather than in the Firebase console. Yay!

Step 1: Create a new Account in Google Analytics

I will actually start from the Account creation screen here, because I am going to create a whole new account for a new website I’m working on for my analytics consultancy, KS Digital. So step 1 is to create a new account. If you don’t need to separate out the account due to different business units or use cases, then skip on to step #2 to create the new property. 

I’ll name my account, and then note I’m going to leave all the communication boxes checked because these tends to be useful emails from the GA team (they don’t spam you). Then I’ll hit next. 

Step 2: Create an App + Web Property in Google Analytics

Step 2 asks you what you want to measure. Note there are now 3 options in the GA UI to choose from:

Web: this is your standard Universal Analytics account with a property ID in the form of “UA-12345”

App: this is a mobile app property, in the format of Firebase. The measurement ID will be in the format of “G-XYZ123ABC.” It is no longer possible to create a legacy app property with the old GA SDK. 

Web + App: This is a property that allows you to have data streams for both Web and App. This means that it is a different type of web tracking than you have in Universal Analytics to ensure the same data model between Web and App. This also uses the Firebase format, or in other words, both the App and Web + App options here use the same data model (which is the same as GA for Firebase and different than Universal Analytics). The measurement ID will be in the format of “G-XYZ123ABC.” 

This is what it would look like if you choose to create a new Web Property:

If you choose either Apps or Apps and Web here, the experience will look slightly different:

*Navigate to your Firebase account if you want to create a new property for an existing Firebase project

Next you’ll need to accept the Terms of Service: 

Once you’ve done that, you’ll have a new A+W property!

Note that once you do choose to create an App + Web property, your admin view for this property will change a bit. You will no longer see the “View” column as there are no Views in this new type of property (settings and capabilities usually done in View can now be done within the new property, and other reasons, such as creating country specific Views, can be accomplished with a quick Filter in the new property):

Step 3: Setting up your Data Stream

Now that you have a new A+W property within the Property column, you need to set up your “Data Streams” (new with the new property). “Streams” is the term Google is now using to indicate different pipelines of data coming into the new property. You’ll find this setting under the Property Column in the Admin panel.

In this case, because I am using A+W to track my new website, I’ll choose a Web Stream.

Once I do that, I’ll see the options available for configuring my stream. One important thing to call out here is “Enhanced Measurement” (which I talked about in my initial launch blogpost). Clicking the settings icon next to the icons show what is being measured will allow you to make changes here. You could decide to toggle off the automatic measurement of these, or for something like site search, if you know your query parameter is different than most of the defaults (automatically entered here), you can input it in this screen. Since I do want to track all of this out of the box, I’ll leave them all selected. I also know that my query parameter for site search is ‘s’, so I’m set with the defaults shown. 

Once I’m happy with all of the settings on this screen, I’ll click “Create Stream” which will create the stream info I need, aka the gtag tracking code, which I’ll use to implement on my site (I’ll do this via Google Tag Manager). 

Clicking in, you get the Stream details. Note I’ve blocked out sensitive info here for stream/measurement ID from the screenshot:

You can choose to hardcode the Gtag code, or to use and existing on-page tag in the “Tagging Instructions” section which has detailed instructions for using your existing on-page tag via GA or GTM:

Choose which of these options is best for you, and go ahead and implement following the instructions (detailed Step by Step walkthrough here). Congrats, these are all the steps you’ll need to take to setup your new App + Web property!

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