Alicia Hamilton

29 May 2024

Key Highlights

  • Google Analytics 4 offers a more comprehensive and user-centric measurement experience than Universal Analytics.
  • Starting July 1st, 2024 all customers will lose access to the Universal Analytics interface.
  • Exporting data from Universal Analytics can help businesses analyze historical data and improve their overall business performance


In today’s digital landscape, businesses rely on data to make informed decisions and drive growth. Universal Analytics has been a popular tool for collecting and analyzing data. Still, with the introduction of Google Analytics 4, businesses now have access to a more advanced and comprehensive analytics experience. This step-by-step guide will walk you through the process of exporting data from Universal Analytics, allowing you to leverage historical data and gain valuable insights into your business performance.

Exporting data from Universal Analytics is an important step for businesses that want to transition to Google Analytics 4 and take advantage of its advanced features and capabilities. By exporting data, businesses can ensure that they have access to their historical data and continue to analyze it for valuable insights. Whether you’re a beginner or an experienced user, this guide will provide you with the necessary steps to export data from Universal Analytics and make the most of your analytics journey.

Understanding Universal Analytics and Its Importance

Universal Analytics is the previous generation of analytics that was built for a time when online measurement was mainly focused on the desktop web and cookies. However, as the digital landscape has evolved, so have the needs of businesses in terms of data collection and analysis. Universal Analytics properties rely on cookies and independent sessions, which are becoming obsolete in today’s multi-platform and privacy-focused environment.

Why Export Data from Universal Analytics?

Exporting data from Universal Analytics is important for several reasons.

Firstly, exporting data allows businesses to retain access to their historical data. This is especially important for businesses that rely on historical data for trend analysis, forecasting, and performance evaluation. By exporting data, businesses can ensure that they have access to their previous analytics data even after transitioning to Google Analytics 4.

Secondly, exporting data from Universal Analytics allows businesses to analyze their data in other analytics tools or software. This can be particularly useful if businesses want to perform advanced analysis or combine their analytics data with other data sources.

Lastly, exporting data from Universal Analytics can help businesses improve their overall business performance. By analyzing historical data, businesses can identify trends, patterns, and insights that can inform their decision-making and strategic planning processes. This can lead to more effective marketing campaigns, better customer experiences, and ultimately, improved business outcomes.

Preparing to Export Data from Universal Analytics

Before you can start the process of exporting data from Universal Analytics, there are a few things you’ll need to have in place.

Firstly, make sure you have access to your Universal Analytics account. This will require you to have the necessary login credentials and permissions. If you’re not sure how to access your Universal Analytics account, refer to the next section for detailed instructions.

Secondly, familiarize yourself with the Google Marketing Platform. This is the platform that houses Google Analytics and other marketing tools. Having a basic understanding of the Google Marketing Platform will make the process of exporting data smoother.

Accessing Your Universal Analytics Account

To access your Universal Analytics account and start the process of exporting data, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to your Google Marketing Platform account. 
  2. Once you’re signed in, navigate to the “Analytics” section. This is where you’ll find the Universal Analytics properties that you have access to.
  3. Select the Universal Analytics property that contains the data you want to export. If you have multiple properties, make sure you choose the correct one.
  4. Once you’re in the Universal Analytics property, you’ll have access to various reports and data. Take some time to familiarize yourself with the different sections and reports available, as this will help you navigate through the analytics interface more efficiently.

By following these steps, you’ll be able to access your Universal Analytics account and start the process of exporting data. It’s important to ensure that you have the necessary permissions and access rights to perform these actions.

Step-by-Step Guide to Exporting Data

To export data from Universal Analytics, follow these steps:

  1. Sign in to Google Analytics
  2. Select the View
  3. Navigate to the Report
  4. Adjust Date Range (Optional)
  5. Click on Export
  6. Choose Export Format
  7. Confirm Export
  8. Save File
  9. Open Exported File.
  10. This systematic process ensures you can efficiently extract and utilize valuable insights from your analytics data.

Step 1: Sign in to Google Analytics

To begin exporting data from Universal Analytics, the initial step is signing into Google Analytics. 

Step 2: Select the View

To export data from Universal Analytics, after signing in, navigate to Google Analytics. Click on the account, select the property, and then choose the relevant view where your data resides. Different views offer varied perspectives, like all website data or only specific sections. Selecting the right view ensures accurate data export tailored to your needs.

Step 3: Navigate to the Desired Section

Each section provides valuable insights into different aspects of your data, enabling you to make informed decisions based on the performance of your website. For hotels, valuable sections could include Acquisition, E-Commerce, and Audience data.

Step 4: Adjust Date Range (Optional)

To refine your analysis, utilize the optional feature to adjust the date range in Universal Analytics. This step empowers you to focus on specific time frames for a more granular examination. By narrowing the scope, you can extract insights tailored to your requirements, enhancing the precision of your data interpretation. This optional adjustment provides a valuable tool for in-depth exploration of your analytics data, ensuring that your decisions are well-informed and aligned with the evolution of your business strategy. 

To export the full range of historical data, you’ll want to pinpoint the start of the Universal Analytics profile along with when the profile had transitioned to GA4 in 2023. 

Step 5: Click on Export

To export your data from Universal Analytics, in step 5, simply click on the ‘Export’ option. This action triggers the process of saving the data in the desired format for further analysis. By clicking on export, you initiate the transfer of essential analytics data that can provide valuable insights into your business performance. The exported file contains a wealth of information collected through Google Analytics, allowing you to delve deeper into your data analysis process and extract meaningful conclusions.

Step 6: Choose Export Format

To export data from Universal Analytics, in step 6, you need to choose the export format. This format selection is crucial as it determines the way your data will be presented and utilized for analysis. Formats like CSV (Comma-Separated Values) or PDF can be selected based on your specific requirements and ease of use for further examination or sharing. Ensure to pick the format that best suits your analytical needs, allowing for seamless data interpretation and analysis. By choosing the option to export to Google Sheets this can then be utilized in Looker Studio for analysis. 

Step 7: Confirm Export

To confirm export, review the selected export format, ensuring it aligns with your analysis needs. Double-check the chosen parameters, guaranteeing all relevant data will be included. Verifying these settings is crucial to prevent any data loss or export inaccuracies. Once satisfied, proceed with the export process confidently, knowing that the data will be retrieved accurately in the specified format.

Step 8: Save File

To complete this step, after choosing your export format, click on the “Save” button within the export dialogue box. This action prompts Google Analytics to save the file to your designated location on your device. Remember to choose a clear and easily accessible location for efficient retrieval and future reference. By saving the file promptly, you ensure that your exported data is safely stored and ready for further analysis.

Step 9: Open Exported File

To access your exported data file, locate the saved file on your device. Click to open the file, which is typically saved in CSV format for easy data manipulation. Once opened, you can delve into the raw data or import it into your preferred analysis tool for a more in-depth exploration. Familiarize yourself with the contents to extract valuable insights that can enhance your overall data analysis process.

After Exporting Your Data

Once you have exported your data from Universal Analytics, it’s essential to follow best practices for managing it efficiently. Analyzing the exported data can provide valuable insights into your business performance and customer behavior. By delving into the details, you can uncover patterns, trends, and opportunities that may have gone unnoticed. This step is crucial for maximizing the benefits of your data collection efforts and making informed decisions based on the information extracted. Remember, the real value lies in the analysis and application of the data you have exported.

Best Practices for Managing Exported Data

Ensure efficient data management post-export by organizing files logically. Create a folder structure that reflects your reporting needs. Label files with clear naming conventions for easy retrieval. Regularly audit and archive exported data to prevent clutter and optimize storage space. Consider implementing automation tools or scripts to streamline repetitive tasks. Encrypt sensitive information for security. Maintain data integrity by keeping backups. Document your data management practices for future reference and team collaboration.

Analyzing Your Exported Data

Analyzing your exported data involves delving into the insights gained from your exported files. Utilize Google Analytics to interpret trends, user behaviors, and key metrics. Employ machine learning algorithms to uncover patterns in customer journeys. Focus on attributions, ROI calculations, and trends across various time frames. Extract metadata for in-depth analysis. By scrutinizing this data, you can enhance decision-making processes and optimize business performance. Stay abreast of new insights to refine your strategies for optimal results.


In conclusion, exporting data from Universal Analytics is a valuable process that provides insights for informed decision-making. By following the step-by-step guide outlined in this blog, you can efficiently export data, analyze it effectively, and implement best practices for managing the exported data. Understanding the importance of Universal Analytics and knowing how to access, export, and analyze data will enhance your data analysis capabilities and help you make data-driven decisions to optimize your business strategies. Stay organized and focused on utilizing the exported data to its fullest potential for actionable insights and improved performance.