Destination Digital

How To Add A Universal Analytics Account To An Established GA4 Account

Google wants us all to adopt GA4 Analytics and railroads new accounts down that route. The only problem with this is that there are important Universal Analytics data reporting features not possible to get out of GA4. GA4 is also a very different beast to Universal Analytics which can be disorienting if you aren’t used to the interface. Here is a quick guide to help you add a Universal Analytics account to an established GA4 account so you can track traffic in both ways.

We can’t say we have taken to GA4 like a duck to water. Google is determined that we all adopt this new measurement system and forces through new account set ups to do this by default. You really have to concentrate at the right point in the set up process to add yourself a Universal Analytics account at the same time as a GA4 account by choosing ‘advanced options’ otherwise you miss the opportunity altogether.

There are awkward features in GA4 that makes it much easier to switch to UA tracking to take a look at the information you need. For instance, looking at page views by source/medium for instance is a convoluted palaver in GA4, and is such a basic check-and-measure when looking at website traffic behaviour it’s a complete wonder that Google have made it so difficult to access this information anymore. You can still get this information in GA4 but it takes many clicks and there isn’t easy filtering available to narrow down your results like there is in Universal Analytics. Also there are crucial things that don’t work, like associating your account with a Search Console account to pull that information through to the Analytics interface.

We prefer sticking with Universal Analytics to maintain agility in our cross checking, cross platform data analysis for clients, and so it’s the very first things we put in place when we take over a GA4-only account.

How do I add Universal Analytics to GA4?

  • Within your Google Analytics GA4 account, click on Admin – you will find this in the bottom left corner of your screen in the left hand navigation bar.
  • Then click ‘Create Property’ – see the screen grab above for where you can find this.
  • Add a name – something like your brand name and the words Universal Analytics would do, choose your time zone and currency then click ‘show advanced options’.
  • Slide the button next to ‘Create a Universal Analytics property’ to the ‘on’ position (it will go blue)
  • Add your website address, and then, since we are looking at adding a Universal Analytics property to an existing GA4 account in this article, you need to check the second check box that reads “Create a Universal Analytics property only”, then click next.
  • You will then need to fill out the answers to a few questions about your business before you click create.


You will be then taken to a page with some code on it. Copy and paste this code into a text file, but then pause right here for a moment!

  • On the left of this page where you see the code you will see a link to a ‘GA4 setup assistant’. Click this.
  • The second option on the page says ‘I want to connect to an existing Google Analytics 4 property’. In the drop down, select your GA4 account that you already have. Click ‘connect properties’. Then click ‘See your GA4 property’
  • On the next screen, select ‘tag installation’, click on your website’s name and then scroll to the tagging instructions part of the page.
  • Drop down the ‘Global site tag’ option to reveal the GA4 code.


Now although it would seem that the next logical step would be to combine the code you get back in the Admin screens of so you can use one script to invoke both tracking accounts, we are informed by Google support that the two codes need to be added in separately.

  • So you need to copy and paste the two pieces of scripting code from the two sides of the Admin interface for both GA4 and UA and get these added to the <head> area of your website’s templates so that the code appears across the whole website.


Once in place, you should then start to see the data being fired by your website appearing in both reporting interfaces. A quick check in ‘Real Time’ mode will show you moving from page to page as live action to confirm your code is in place correctly.


Read more

We hope that this series of articles will save you hours of searching for how to deal with small tasks. Take a look at the other articles we’ve put together:

As we work our way through small and always difficult to remember tasks at the coalface of marketing, we’re sure there will be additions to this list very soon, so maybe bookmark this page if you found it helpful.


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If you’d like help with your digital marketing or general analytics support, then email us on or give us a call on 01629 810199 for a quick chat.

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You can email us on or give us a call on 01629 810199 or you can use the contact form at the bottom of this page.