Use a log analyzer instead of Google Analytics

Website operators like to know the number of views they’re getting for each page, the countries their visitors are coming from, and the referrer (the website that referred the visitor to you), and maybe the browser type the visitors are using.

Third party analytics

One way to capture this information is to use a third party analytics package like Google Analytics (GA). They work OK but…

They’re less accurate

Some ad blockers will block third party trackers including GA. Web system administrators are seeing a big difference between what GA reports on their site and reality. This will get worse as more people use ad blockers.

If you’re not paying for it, you’re the product

Google makes its money collecting data and selling it and selling ads. If you install GA on your website, information about your visitors is flowing into the massive Scrooge McDuck data vault at Google headquarters. If you sell bicycles on a website running GA, Google knows your visitor is interested in buying a bicycle. How do they use that data and does it hurt your company?

Fortunately there is a simple alternative.

Log analyzers

A log analyzer like GoAccess is a program that runs on your server and collects page views, country information, and referrer data from your server logs. It displays this information on a dashboard web page updated on a schedule you set. GoAccess has some really nice features and can even track how fast each web page loads.

Use a log analyzer: it’s easy and safe.