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Report on ROAS in GA4: How to import your cost data

3 minutes reading time

Report on CPC & ROAS in GA4? Yes, you can. Are you looking to analyse metrics like ROAS in GA4? Want to gain deeper insights into the efficientcy from your ad campaigns? Google Analytics 4 now allows for the import of cost data, making it easier than ever to track your advertising spend alongside your website traffic. Let’s have a look at how to do it.

What can you import into Google Analytics 4?

Apart from implementing the GA4 tracking code on your website or app, or implementing the GA4 Measurement Protocol in your microwave (yes, you could do that), there are more ways to ingest data into the analytics tool.

You can simple create scheduled imports for all kinds of data namely, user-IDs, item data, offline event data, and yes, cost data. As you have already noticed, in this article we will look at the latter.

GA4 data import options

What are the benefits of importing cost data into GA4?

Firstly, it allows for more accurate ROI calculations. By knowing exactly how much you’re spending on advertising, you can calculate the return on investment more accurately, making it easier to make informed decisions about where to allocate your marketing budget.

Secondly, it enables a more in-depth analysis of your advertising campaigns. With cost data, you can track the performance of specific campaigns, ad sets, or even individual ads, allowing you to make more informed decisions about which campaigns are driving the most traffic and generating the highest revenue.

How to import cost data into GA4?

Import your (ad) cost data into GA4 in 2 ways: Manually or by SFTP with the help of a developer. Let’s have a look at the manual import.

  1. Go to Admin > middle column > data import
  2. Create data source > cost data
  3. Choose an import source (SFTP or manual CSV)
  4. Download the template from this Google help article

To import cost data you need to link the specific ad click to the session in GA4. You can do this with UTM parameters.

  1. Update all UTMs to make them match and add the UTM ID
  2. Export your data from Microsoft Ads or Meta Ads
  3. Check the help article to make sure the formatting is correct.
  4. Now you need to map the analytics fields to the import fields. As you can see in the screenshot below, once you have created the data source, you cannot edit the mappings.
GA4 data import fields

That’s it. It takes a while to import, so be patient. Once it’s done, come back to it and check all the fields.

Import your data from many different sources. You can find useful links for different platforms like Microsoft, Linkedin, Facebook and Verizon, at the bottom of the help article.

Heads up: GA4 only allows for one import source so, if you want to import from multiple sources you need to combine them in one sheet.

You can update the data regularly for central cost reporting. This needs to be in the same file so save it well.

The takeaway

In conclusion, importing cost data into Google Analytics 4 is a game-changer for any business looking to gain deeper insights into its advertising performance. By allowing for more accurate ROI calculations and more in-depth analysis of advertising campaigns, this feature gives you the power to make informed decisions about their marketing budget and ultimately drive more revenue. Try it out for yourself!

Profielfoto Freek Kampen

By Freek Kampen

Data & Analytics specialist and co-owner of New North Digital. With a background in online advertising, I solve tracking and data issues for entrepreneurs and agencies.


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