Textpattern CMS support forum
Re: Google Analytics - do we really need/use it?
I can’t comment on the TXP stats, but there are times when web statistics are useful. I have a few clients who do want to know, not on an ongoing basis, but general trends.
I recently went through the GA webstats with a non-profit organisation where we have a directory of members on the site. The organisation is for a decidedly non-tech field where the homepage and publicity material is often not seen as a priority as it is far removed from the very hands-on activities of the members. The results of the most visited pages showed that the members’ directory is the second most actively used part of the site, and the results of the next-visited pages showed that the placement of feature items on the homepage were very effective at directing visiting traffic towards particular topics. Likewise, significant peaks in the visit stats coincided exactly with the organisation’s public activities.
For myself, the technology stats also showed that I can strip out a lot of the old support for IE as even in this field – where you might expect many to still have beige computers sitting in their offices with XP and old IE – visitor stats for oldIE 6-10 and XP/vista etc. now account for < 0.5 % of website visitors. Likewise, the shift from desktop towards phone and tablet visitors is very apparent in the stats, and confirms that the long-postponed responsive redesign of the homepage was a worthwhile exercise.
While this may not seem very groundbreaking to us, it provided very effective confirmation of decisions made by the organisation.
In Germany, GA is only permissible with anonymize_IP. Its biggest problem in my eyes is its complexity, the need to clear out analytics spam, and the work required to distil the relevant results from the stats.
The usefulness of data in future with increasing use of anti-tracking tools is, however, a valid point, and it’ll be interesting to see how that impacts on the reported stats.
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