Event Tracking with Google Analytics 4: A Complete Guide - Clapping Dog Media

Event Tracking with Google Analytics 4: A Complete Guide

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is quite a bit different than Universal Analytics.

Please, please if you haven’t installed it yet on your site, do it now. Universal Analytics is going away in a few months and you need to get the latest version installed on your site. Here is how is are step by step instructions for installing GA4 on WordPress, Squarespace and Shopify.

One of the biggest changes is that GA4 is event based, meaning  that any interaction can be captured as an event.

In Google Analytics 4, an event is a specific action that a user takes on your website. An event can be anything from clicking a button or link, watching a video, submitting a form, or making a purchase.

By tracking events, you can better understand how users interact with your site and gain insights into what is working and what can be improved.

In GA4, events are categorized into four main types:

  • automatic events
  • suggested events
  • enhanced measurement events
  • custom events

Automatic events are automatically tracked by GA4, while suggested events are pre-defined events that you can enable with a single click. Enhanced measurement events provide additional insights into user behavior, such as scroll tracking and outbound clicks, and custom events allow you to track any specific action that you define.

How to set up event tracking in GA4

Two of the most helpful events to track are clicks on internal links and form submissions. In this post we are going to walk through how to set up these two events.

Step 1: Set Up GA4

Before you can start using GA4’s event tracking feature, you’ll need to set up a GA4 property. If you’re already using Google Analytics, you can create a new GA4 property in the same account. Alternatively, you can create a new account specifically for GA4.

Once you’ve set up your GA4 property, you’ll need to add the GA4 tracking code to your website. This will allow GA4 to track user behavior on your site.

Step 2: Define Your Events

The next step is to define the specific user actions you want to track.


We’ll be focusing on clicks on internal links and form submissions. For each event you want to track, you’ll need to define the following:

  • Event name: This should be a clear and descriptive name that identifies the specific user action you’re tracking. For example, “internal_link_click” or “form_submission.” It is important to use lower case for event names and use an underscore “_” if there are more than one words.
  • Event parameters: These are additional pieces of information you want to track along with the event. For example, if you’re tracking form submissions, you might want to track the specific form that was submitted.

Step 3: Implement Event Tracking

Once you’ve defined your events, you’ll need to implement the event tracking code on your website. This code will tell GA4 to track each time a user performs one of the specific actions you’ve defined.

To implement event tracking, you’ll need to use Google Tag Manager. Google Tag Manager is a free tool that allows you to manage and deploy marketing tags (including GA4 event tracking) on your website.

First, you’ll need to create a new tag in Google Tag Manager. This tag should be set up to track the specific event you defined in step 2.

Next, you’ll need to set up a trigger that tells Google Tag Manager when to fire the tag. For example, if you’re tracking clicks on internal links, you’ll want to set up a trigger that fires the tag each time a user clicks on an internal link.

Once you’ve set up your tag and trigger, you’ll need to publish your changes in Google Tag Manager.

Here is one of our favorite tutorials on Events from Loves Data.

Step 4: Analyze Your Data

Now that you’ve set up your event tracking, it’s time to start analyzing your data. In GA4, you can view your event data in the Events report.

This report will show you how many times each event was triggered, as well as any event parameters you defined.

By analyzing your event data, you can gain valuable insights into user behavior on your site. For example, if you’re tracking clicks on internal links, you can see which links are getting the most clicks. This can help you identify which pages on your site are the most popular, and which pages might need some optimization.

GA4’s enhanced event tracking feature is a powerful tool for measuring specific user actions that impact SEO. By tracking clicks on internal links and form submissions, you can gain valuable insights into user behavior on your site, and use that data to improve your SEO strategy.

If you would need help understanding GA4 and what metrics to even look at.

We can help. We have an incredible Insights Report that gives you all of the SEO and Analytics data you need to make the next best decision.



Site Design Rebecca Pollock
Site Development North Star Sites