Google Analytics Policy Update

On the 8th of May 2018, Google Analytics recently announced their updated data retention policy in which a very important detail may have been overlooked by site owners.

If by the 25th of may, if you do not update your data retention settings,
Google will permanently delete your historical analytics data.

Dear Google Analytics Customer,
We recently sent an email introducing new data retention controls that allow you to manage how long your user and event data are stored by Google Analytics. We would like to remind you that the new data retention settings will soon take effect – on May 25, 2018.
If you haven’t already done so, please review and confirm these settings (Property ➝ Tracking Info ➝ Data Retention) as Google Analytics will begin to delete data according to these settings starting May 25.
Impact of this setting as of May 25 is the following:
  • Any user and event data that is older than your retention setting will be marked for permanent deletion, and will no longer be accessible in Google Analytics.
  • Deletion will affect the use of segmentation, some custom reports and secondary dimensions when applied in date ranges older than your retention setting.
  • Reports based on aggregated data will not be affected.
Find out more
You can also learn more about these data retention settings or how Google Analytics is committed to safeguarding your data.
The Google Analytics Team

What Next? See how to change your settings and save your data.

Luckily this is a fairly simple fix that can be done in 2 minutes provided you have access to your Google Analytics Account at a property level.

Follow the step by step guide below and save your data. Be sure to spread the news as a loss of all historical data could be devastating to online businesses, bloggers and marketers alike.

  1. Sign in to Google Analytics..

  2. Click Admin, and navigate to the property you want to edit.

  3. In the PROPERTY column, click Tracking Info > Data Retention.

  4. User-data retention: select the retention period you want.

  5. Reset on new activity: turn the switch on or off.

Reset on new activity – Yes or No?

What does this mean? It basically boils down to:

If you leave this setting on and you have an expiration date set for a user, it will reset the expiration date, increasing the length of user data retention.

Our advice is to leave this setting on.

Thats it! You’re done.

A quick and easy fix that will save you tons of valuable data down the line.

Just note you’ll have to perform this operation for each property you own or manage. So a bit of admin for multiple site owners, but important nonetheless.

Do you part and share this article with your colleagues to help them avoid any loss of data 🙂