How to Set Up Google Analytics 4: Connecting GA4 to Your Site

If you missed part 1 of this 2-part series about setting up GA4, be sure to check it out here. You’ll need to create a GA4 property before you can connect it to your site!

In today’s blog post, we’re going to cover three different ways to connect your new GA4 property to your site. You don’t need to do all three; just pick the one you’re most comfortable with and the one that will give you the features you need.

a photo of a computer with google analytics on the screen and the title of this post 'how to set up Google Analytics 4: connecting GA4 to your site'

The three ways are:

  1. With an Analytics WordPress plugin
  2. With the Google Tag (gtag.js)
  3. With Google Tag Manager

Check out the chart below for our “ease of connecting GA4 to your site with this method” breakdown:

a graph of the ease of connecting ga4 to your site using different methods

Let’s start with the easiest, shall we?

Installing GA4 with an Analytics WordPress Plugin

For: WordPress users and anyone uncomfortable with adding code to your site.

There are plenty of WordPress plugins available that can help you connect Google Analytics to your site, but the one plugin that’s the most popular amongst the Food Blogger Pro community is MonsterInsights.

There are free and premium versions of the plugin, and both versions will give you everything you need to connect your new GA4 property to your site:

1. First, we’ll add the MonsterInsights plugin to your site. Log into your site, then go to Plugins > Add New.

arrows pointing to plugins>add new on WordPress

2. Search for MonsterInsights, then click Install Now.

the MonsterInsights plugin in the WordPress plugin repo with an orange arrow pointing to Install Now

3. Once installed, click Activate.

the MonsterInsights plugin in the WordPress plugin repo with an orange arrow pointing to Activate

4. Once Activated, you should be taken to the MonsterInsights area. Click Launch the Wizard.

The MonsterInsights onboarding page with an orange arrow pointing to Launch the Wizard

5. Choose the category that best describes your website, then click Save and Continue.

the company type question during the MonsterInsights setup

6. Click Connect MonsterInsights.

the Connect MonsterInsights to your Website page in the MonsterInsights setup wizard

7. Choose the Gmail account you’re using for your Google Analytics account, and then click Allow.

MonsterInsights Gmail permissions with an orange arrow pointing to allow

8. Choose your GA4 property, then click Complete Connection.

The property selector with the Complete Connection button in the MonsterInsights setup wizard

9. Review the recommended settings, make changes as necessary, and then click Save and continue.

An orange arrow pointing to Save & Continue button on the MonsterInsights recommended settings page

10. Review the recommended addons, make changes as necessary, and then click Continue (alternatively, you can skip this for now!).

the recommended settings page in MonsterInsights

Huzzah! Your GA4 property is now connected to your website! 🎉

Successful connection in MonsterInsights

Data can take a few hours to start appearing in GA4 and in your MonsterInsights Dashboard, so don’t panic if you don’t immediately see information.

Installing GA4 with Google Tag (gtag.js)

For: Anyone who feels comfortable adding code to their site header.

If you were able to use your existing gtag.js code during your GA4 property setup, you should be good to go! Your GA4 property should already be connected to your site (and data should start showing up on GA4 within a few hours).

If that option wasn’t available for you during your GA4 property setup (or maybe you created a brand new Google Analytics account), using the gtag.js code can be an effective and relatively simple way to connect GA4 to your site… provided you’re comfortable with adding a little bit of code to your site!

You’re going to want to add the gtag.js tag in the <head> element on your website. While this process is relatively simple, it’s always helpful to make a full site backup before you make any changes to the code on your website.

1. The first step is to copy your gtag.js code. Go to the Admin gear icon in the bottom-left corner in Google Analytics, and then click Data Streams (note: if you don’t see Data Streams, make sure that your GA4 property is selected in the drop-down menu).

orange arrows pointing to the admin gear icon and the Data Streams area in GA4

2. Click on the web data stream for your website.

a web data stream in GA4

3. Click View tag instructions.

An orange arrow pointing to the View tag instructions button in GA4 for the web stream

4. Click Install manually, and then copy the code below. This is your gtag.js code!

an orange arrow pointing to the gtag code to install manually for ga4

5. Now it’s time to add your code to the header of your website.

Certain themes have built-in places for you to add codes to your header, and Genesis, the popular “parent” theme to many “child” themes, is one of them.

That said, an important note here is that any code you add to your header is actually added to your theme’s code. So if you switch themes somewhere down the line, it’s important that you copy important header codes from your old theme (like your gtag.js code!) into your new theme’s header.

If you’re using the Genesis theme with a child theme, you can go to Genesis > Theme Settings, and then paste your gtag.js code into the Header Scripts area.

Orange arrows pointing to Genesis > Theme Settings in WordPress and an orange box around the header script area

You can delete your UA tracking code from this area as well. It should look something like this, and it should contain a “UA-XXXXX-Y” code (highlighted below):

the universal site tag for google analytics

Alternatively, you can install a plugin called Code Snippets to help you add your gtag.js code. Once you install and activate that plugin:

  • Go to Snippets > Add New
  • Give the Snippet a name (like gtag.js)
  • Then paste the following code into the code area, pasting your gtag.js code where it says “DELETE THIS LINE AND PASTE CODE HERE”
add_action( 'wp_head', function () { ?>


<?php }, 1 );

It should look like this:

the gtag.js code in the Code Snippet plugin on WordPress

Then simply scroll to the bottom and click Save Changes.

Yay! 🎉 Your gtag.js code should now be in the header of every page on your site. To verify, you can view the page source on your website and search for “gtag.js.”

an orange arrow and the tada emoji pointing at the gtag.js code in the page source

Installing GA4 with Google Tag Manager

For: Anyone who is comfortable with code and is interested in tracking lots of custom events with GA4.

Our last method requires the use of yet another free Google tool: Google Tag Manager.

the Google Tag Manager account dashboard

Using Google Tag Manager is a nice way to avoid the pitfalls of installing your Google Analytics tracking code with a plugin, and it gives you the opportunity to configure your site with different tags, triggers, and variables in the future for things like conversion tracking and marketing.

Google has some points to consider before you start using Google Tag Manager, and, according to Google, you should consider using Google Tag Manager if you need:

  • The ability to deploy and modify both Google and 3rd party tags
  • The ability to deploy and modify tags for both web and mobile apps
  • The ability to deploy and modify tags on the fly from a web interface
  • Collaboration and versioning capabilities

If you don’t quite understand what those points mean, or if they’re not things that are particularly important for you and your blog, try out one of the other options above.

That said, if Google Tag Manager does sound like a good fit for you and your site, we’re going to refer you to Google’s documentation about the setup.

Why? Google updates their processes frequently, and, in turn, will always have up-to-date support documentation available for its users. Speaking of, here are Google’s support docs that will teach you how to:

You can also review this video from Julius over at Analytics Mania if you need some visual help!

Troubleshooting & Learning More

If you’re having trouble connecting your GA4 property to your site, or if you’d like to dive even deeper into the wonderful world of Google Analytics:

Google Analytics course on Food Blogger Pro

PHEW! That does it for our mega GA4 blog series! 🎉

If you were able to create a GA4 property and connect it to your site using this guide, we’d love to hear from you in the comments! We’re excited for you and this new generation of site analytics. 😊

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  1. I can’t thank you enough for this blog post! I was struggling to make sense of it all and failing miserably. It occurred to me last night that I should check my foodblogger pro account and see if there was a post on How To add GA4. Thank goodness! I was finally able to make it happen thanks to you good folks….Just one more reason to be a member of Foodblogger…thank you, thank you, thank you! You all are the best!

    1. This made our day! GA4 is definitely not the most intuitive. So glad this post was able to help you! We also have a full Google Analytics Course on FBP if you need more info!

  2. Hello Sir you have given very good information about Analytics 4 but my problem is that after installing GA4 Analytic on my website website data is not showing complete in google search console what to do? thank you in advance