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Don't let Google throw away your Google Analytics data

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With all of the notifications flying left and right over privacy notifications and "data retention" policies, you may not have noticed Google Analytics' alert that "All user data and events that are older than your retention setting will be marked for permanent deletion, and will no longer be accessible in Google Analytics. We recently sent out Phone Number List an email introducing new data retention controls that allow you to manage how long your user and event data is stored by Google Analytics. We would like to remind you that the new data retention Phone Number List settings will take effect soon - May 25, 2018. If you haven't already, please check and confirm these settings (Property Tracking Information Data Retention) as Google Analytics will start deleting data based on these settings from May 25th. The impact of this setting as of May 25 is as follows: All user and event data prior to your retention setting will be marked for permanent deletion and will no longer be accessible in Google Analytics. The removal will affect the use of segmentation, some custom reports, and secondary Phone Number List dimensions when applied in date ranges older than your retention setting. Reports based on aggregated data will not be affected. You can also learn more about these data retention settings or how Google Analytics is committed to protecting your data. In order to preserve your "user and event-level data" beyond 26 months, you must go to the Data retention Phone Number List portion of your admin panel for EACH domain of analysis and modify the toggle. They give the option of 14 months, 26 months, 38 months, 50 months and do not automatically expire. We recommend that you be aware that if you are in the United States or do not have European customers, the “Do not automatically expire” option should be considered.

Remember that you want to keep this data based on your regional GDPR compliance requirements. (Consult your legal advisor if necessary!) [We contacted several experts and got this contribution on the subject from an anonymous source:] Several experts GA experts confirm that Google's language means any type of custom report beyond the default aggregate data of standard GA reports would be broken by allowing these new data limit Phone Number List defaults to remain in place. They recommend switching to the “no retention limit” setting before May 25. When asked if this could put you out of GDPR compliance, their response is usually that no one knows for sure, but the EU is very unlikely to go after most SMEs for that sort of thing. Weighed against the catastrophic loss of historical data, their choice to go unlimited until they see serious signs Phone Number List that it could be dangerous. Of course, I must include the disclaimer that I am not giving any legal advice here. Every business should be responsible for consulting their own legal counsel The problem is, even legal experts don't really know how it's going to play out in the United States. This is one of those messes where we have to Phone Number List wait for a few test cases (if any) and see how it goes. Many suspect what is really going on here. Google is taking advantage of the anxiety of the GDPR to empty its databases. Will this have an impact on the data provided by the Google Analytics API - YES Yes, this potentially has an impact on the reports and data that you will have for your customers by connecting our tool to the Google Analytics API. What exactly do the Phone Number List mean by "User and event-level data" What isn't exactly clarified with examples in this notice or in their data retention page is exactly what data is going to be deleted on May 25.

All user and event data prior to your retention setting will be Phone Number List marked for permanent deletion and will no longer be accessible in Google Analytics. As the verbiage 'event-level data' could certainly be interpreted to mean tracked event data that you might have configured to track clicks on particular elements of the page, or any other Google event you may have configured. If so, it could mean that goals saved using that data would be affected as well, which is a very important data point to be removed with just two weeks' notice! I think so, it is related to GDPR. I would say the Phone Number List canned event reports are not changed. The rest of the data utility is not available because events can no longer be segmented, secondary dimensions, etc. It also appears that “ad hoc reports” allow you to dig into your data and apply Phone Number List segments to understand what exactly you are seeing. Analysis in Google Analytics OFTEN requires custom segments to get a really clear picture. List of features that will not be available for this historical data: Create ad hoc reports Apply a custom Phone Number List segment Secondary dimensions Table filters Additional Resources Review of this Analytics Data Retention Policy Change Jeffalytics conducted a more in-depth review of this retention policy and its potential impact.

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