Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Google Analytics

I am unquestionably a creature of habit.  For example, for a good decade or so I have been using site stats and a hit counter from www.cgispy.com.  Click the link - it still looks like the 90s in there!  Matches my page that looks like the 90s.  Worst yet, I hadn't bothered putting the counters on all the Lowell pages I did, just the table of contents - the reason being the tools were far too simple and would've over-counted hits if people clicked through pages.  So, instead - I've been grossly underestimating visitors.

However, as this blog is the first time in a very long time I seriously rethought how I put information up online, I did some research and realized that for the last five years, I could've been using Google Analytics.  In addition to visits by browser, location, etc that I've had all along, it tracks individual page hits in the domain, what search terms bring people to what pages, and it has far better visualizations.  And, being Google, it's 100% free for any realistic use I'd have.

It's disappointing that I missed this for this long, especially after the minor spike in traffic I got from the Sun article.

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