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Analyze this

Thursday, May 7th, 2009 by Servage

analyticsWebsite statistics contain powerful knowledge that can help you understand and improve your pages to suit the demands of visitors more efficiently. It is also crucial in determining the quality and success of referrals and ad campaigns. Reviewing your websites statistics should be a routine you do on a regular basis. Daily, weekly, monthly, depending on the visitor volume of your pages.

There are various tools out there to assist you with the gathering and evaluation of data, and today I would like to present one of them to you: Google Analytics. Like many other features from Google, their analytics tool is free to use, integrates nicely with any existing website, and offers a broad range of features for your convenience.

You only need a Google account (free) to get started. In order to implement the tracking functionality you have to include a few lines of code – that you get in the administration interface – on your website. Thereafter Google Analytics starts monitoring the traffic on your site, and you can review the results.

Some of the key pieces of information are:

1) Visits and page views show you how many unique visitors (i.e. how many different people) and the amount of viewed pages your site has. This is properly the most important number for you to determine your site’s success, growth etc.

2) Traffic sources allows you to understand where your visitors originates from. Grouped by Direct Traffic, Search Engines and Referrals, you can easily see how people end up on your site. A more detailed view of the sources even gives you the possibility to see exactly which websites they come from.

3) Visitors also allows you to see what systems (operating systems, browsers, screen resolutions) your visitors uses. This information is good to have when considering development of features that may require certain client-side functionality.

4) Goals provide you with an option to track the conversion of products you may sell on your website. Thereby you can evaluate for instance ad campaigns by seeing how they convert into sign-ups/sales (or other actions on your website).

In general I would say that Google Analytics is a great statistics tool. Besides the obvious benefits it provides, it also is a lot of fun to see website visitors’ behavior represented by numbers and graphs :-)

Analyze this, 3.8 out of 5 based on 15 ratings
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23 comments (leave a comment)

Yeah Google Analytics is really good for webmasters like us.
Helps us improve the SEO of our sites.

And for people who like some privacy you add this to you adblock-filter:
*google*analytics.com*

Got 17k hits on that filter in a few months already.

I cant help but wonder a host thats suppose to provide such services becomes such a shameless advertiser of 3rd party websites products.
I would like also to recommend that since we are using another websites products, why bother paying Servage the money at the first place?! Lets all go to other hosts that would provide proper statics services and doesnt require 3rd party websites services where they fell short.
Im one more time amazed

We are working on improved statistics, but there is a huge difference in the stat we could present in comparison to what Google Analytics (GA) is offering. This is because GA is loaded as a JavaScript in the HTML-code and allow far better statistic than we ever could (unless altering your code). This covers browser info, screen resolution, flash version. Using cookies it also provides info on returning visitors etc. Together with Google Adwords it provides track-back to what keywords leads to conversions. We focus on being a good hosting provider by building more secure OS, clustered web-servers (clustered storage being tested), SSH-access etc. But we are humble enough to mention good complements. We will never have the best statistics, the best link referral, the best bookmark sync, the best file synchronizer … but we aim to be the best hoster.

On WordPress, use Statpress Reloaded:
http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/statpress-reloaded/

Google Analytics is a great web traffic analysis service – I quite like the automatic email reports it can send.

Just a criticism on the article – “Ads” not “Adds” Like the article but I am a bit of a grammar Nazi.

Thanks for letting us know.

Hi all.

I have tried a number of hosts. Some were bad. Some were okay to start with and then became bad. Some were soooo bad I have had to threaten legal action (they tried to hang on to my domain names).

And then there is Servage.

Okay, sometimes their grammar/english/typing isnt 100%. (Neither is mine; but I am sure my German is worse than their English!!).

Their stats aren’t hot (I was interested to hear they’re working on it).

Their email goes walk about from time to time … and yes, I have shouted at them! :)

BUT …

They are by far the best host I have yet used. They DO try to please and often their support answers are VERY quick.

At the price, they are, in my opinion, the best around. If their prices were to go up, maybe I would reconsider, but as things stand, not withstanding the odd email problem and stats, I would like to see more apps etc., but they are the best host around.

For what they charge I can forgive their little misgivings, their typos (people who live in glass houses etc.) because they do give it a go … and a good go! And the support guys and girls are courteous and friendly, and they’re not afraid to say sorry when they have got it wrong, which is cool – that’s pretty rare these days in this game, I have come across some pretty abusive hosts!

And I think this regular list of tips in their blog a nice touch – an idea that is the work of Steffan by the look of it! If it doesn’t interest you on any week, skip over it, I don’t see the point in trying to shoot at it. I look at each new entry and if it is of use, I read, if it isn’t I skip. But I am still pleased its there!

So I like em and I will be staying unless the price goes up and / or the service declines.

But I believe in giving credit where credit is due and despite the the things that we all wish they had, these guys work hard for their money!

Thanks guys – keep up the good work!

Les :)

Google analytcis is one of the most powerfull webtools and its free… great post.

/paw

Third party tools that run on script are fairly useless, or the results are at the very least VERY inaccurate. Many people value their privacy / safety and have installed ad-blocking plugins, no-script plugins, and many other tools to stop (malicious) scripts from running. As a result no statistics are being recorded by tools like Google Analytics. For instance, for my own security, I have Firefox with the no-script plugin & Adblock Plus running, so my hits on websites using Google Analytics are not being recorded, since I do not allow the script to run.

With regard to the above, depending on this type of scripted tool for your SEO is not wise, since you actually still have NO clue of the TRUE amount of visitors and what they have been up to on your website(s). If you’re using it as one of several analyzing tools then it could help in gathering data. But you do really need much more than just this for proper SEO. Personally I would only rely on server side code for tracking/logging/analyzing (like PHP).

All the more important to have (more advanced & accurate) server side statistics implemented that do not get blocked by third party privacy plugins.

So here’s hoping to one day have these tools available from within the Servage packages, without having to depend on (useless) third party scripts or my own custom written PHP tracking / logging code. However, I do strongly agree with Strömqvist. I would rather have Servage concentrate on providing excellent hosting and security (as they already do) than have them ‘waste’ resources on setting up statistics tooling because any decent web coder can do that him- / herself too.

As for Servage, the company: I have never been with a better hosting company and they really do have very nice and friendly support people! Very fast too! Anyway, I am still very very happy with Servage and this greatly outweighs the incidental issue I’m having. Other hosting companies have far more and more severe issues! The grass is the greenest right here on this side ;o) IMHO of course.

Regards
John

I agree with Les Bate that some of the Engrish is a bit Germanic & have even offered to go through their public pages & fix them. But like Les, their English is certainly better than my German or Danish.

Like Less too, I have received some very strange responses to what I thought were very simple questions or requests, but we eventually get there after a few exchanges of opinion!

And I also do appreciate that Servage is trying to add value to their service.

Regards,
Rodney.

We do not use external sources for translating our pages to multiple languages, but prefer to use our devoted staff since we are a multi-language company. This is also due to the fact that we use highly technical products and terms and translators not always do a proper translation. We also have a Swedish translation if you prefer. If you see any odd translation, notify the support staff and we will be glad to fix.

The Google Analytics tool is great in use, but I agree with the issues mentioned above about privacy and non-Javascript support at the client side.
Because of this I asked (long time ago :)) Servage to implement AWStats or Webalizer to gain stats on serverbasis without being dependent on client software. My previous host ran both packages and I could see alot more hits than with my 3rd party Javascript tool. Especially bots and sniffers came into view. As I recall Servage can’t implement this because of the culstered structure of their servers (‘can’t’ doesn’t exist in IT world, right ;)).
And to battle the commercial pitch of this article, my favorite 3rd party tool is StatCounter.
Greets,
Rick.

PS: A great OSS version of Google Analytics (well, sort of ;)): http://piwik.org/

Most of my sites use wp and I use google analytics and quantcast to monitor all my sites. But all my pages are also tracked by a program i have installed on my site. But i did not chose Servage to monitor my sites, I chose them to host my sites and provide support when something goes wrong and i would rather think they are working on making sure servage is up and running 24/7 than them worrying about stats… I think these are 2 different services: hosting & stats.

I just wish servage would have a better system for site statistics as it is currently very basic, but so importnat to us the customer.

The new Analyze is very very great i love it thanks

The Analyze looks very big like google , can i change the colour of analyze on green ?

Hvor er det sørgeligt at til trods for at er hostet på et dansk hostingfirma som ganske vist ligger i Neustadt i Flensborg og med danske medarbejdere som f.esk. Jacob Jensen altid skal læse alting – uanset hvad – fra Jacobs hånd på engelsk, men selvfølgelig hvis han nu har glemt sit modersmål eller er flov over at bruge det, så kan jeg da godt forstå at han skriver på engelsk!!

Hvis det er forsi han mener at Servage bliver større og finere af den grund skulle han måske overveje at skrive på BEGGE sprog, så viser han da i det mindste en lille smule respekt for Servages DANSKE kunder, men dem er der måske heller ikke så mange af????

This is not lack of respect to our Danish customers, but today Servage is among the largest hosting providers in Germany and has customers from more than 180 countries. As a respect to all our customers around the world, we have chosen to use English only in the Wiki and in the Blog. However we do offer customer support in Danish, German, Swedish and English. So we have not forgotten our heritage.

40% of all purchases by the year 2020 will be online

What I would like is a way to look at the Apache log files for my website. That’s all I really need. Even something as simple as a link to a plain text file on the statistics page. I’d really appreciate it if you could do that.

I’m sure Google Analytics can’t tell me what hotlinked images, file indexes, and linked files are getting viewed and downloaded, which is something I’d like to know about.

I suggest you to add a facebook like button!

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