There are loads of analytics platforms to help you track visitor and usage data on your sites. Perhaps most notably Google Analytics, which is widely used (including on this site), probably due to it’s ease of integration, feature-richness, and the fact that it’s free (until you need to jump up to the enterprise tier which is some crazy six-figure jump).
I don’t take any particular issue with Google Analytics. In fact I quite like it, especially as I’ve learned more about customizing it, like we’ve done here on CSS-Tricks as well as on CodePen.
But there are other options. In particular, I wanted to look at some other options where:
- You can self-host the analytics. Always something to be said for owning your own data.
I didn’t find a sea of options to look at. The classic one I always think of in this category is Shaun Inman’s Mint, but Mint isn’t taking new customers anymore. Maybe I’m not looking in all the right places, and perhaps you can help with that. Please chime in with a comment if you know of more options — especially ones you have experience with.
I use @usefathom on Postgres with @HasuraHQ to get my stats through GraphQL on my @gatsbyjs powered blog https://t.co/fKotgYuHFG (generates the “most views” list in the footer).
— knut (@kmelve) September 9, 2019
I personally use matomo for my side projects. Its vast and getten me fall into love. ✌
— RaKesh Mandal (@rkalways_) September 10, 2019
I use GoAccess as a static site generated on a cronjob (https://t.co/yiQMev7NDu) which seems to work quite nicely for very basic site. Doesn’t (afaik) handle ignoring spiders etc
— Shane Hudson (@ShaneHudson) September 9, 2019
Web hosts are uniquely qualified to offer analytics to their users as they configure their own logging and such. For example, I also have analytics on this site through Flywheel, without installing anything, because they can analyze the traffic going through their servers. We wrote up an overview of the service when it was released.
AWStats is the oldest analytics tool on the block. When I started out on the web, all the web hosting providers touted AWStats dashboards as part of their offerings. It runs on Perl, and like the last two services above, it gets data from server logs.
It ain’t pretty but it’s free, open-source, and has the stability of being a software project nearly 20 years old.
To add to this list: I use StatCounter, which has a free tier that allows me to get some basic analytics data via a simple JS snippet. I can look into reports to see various things like country, browser, referrer, popular pages, etc.
I’ve started wondering what other options might be viable since Google Analytics has at least a small impact on page speed.
We’re using GoAccess, it handles our load pretty well, it simply works and the real-time report is awesome!
“AWStats is the oldest analytics tool on the block” ?
Sheeeeeet, I can remember when AWStats was the new kid on the block and was quite fancy compared to the mainstays of Webalizer and Analog Stats.
I haven’t given ’em a whirl yet but Very Smart and Conscientious People™ have recommended:
I use Matomo with the JS tag but it can also use web server logs.
Remember what Google did with its Maps pricing, keep in mind that it could happen at any time to Analytics…