Free Website Statistics – Google Analytics

Do You Know How Many People Visit Your Site?

Do You Know How Many People Visit Your Site?

Some of you have just created your first website or blog. And I bet you want to know how many people are visiting your site. Thanks to Google, you can easily add a simple snippet of code to track the number of visitors that come to your site and learn how they got there.

If you want to jump right into installing Google Analytics for your website, you can sign up for an account here:

A Little History

During the early days of the internet there were a few options for viewing website statistics. Most of these options were subscription based, and we all know nobody likes to pay for these services :). Especially if you are just starting a small, personal site – the last thing you want to do is pay a $20/month fee to see who is visiting your site. One of the only free statistics program available at the time was called “Webalizer”. It wasn’t very fancy but it did give you a good idea of where your traffic was coming from and what keywords were driving people to your site. The one thing Webalizer lacked was longtail information. Webalizer only displayed the top ten results for most website reports.

Around 2004 this amazing website statistic service arrived called Urchin arrived. It had a beautiful interface and it was very intuitive to use. Soon Google purchased Urchin and turned it into “Analytics”. Now you can sign up for a free analytics account and install it on multiple sites.

How To Install Google Analytics

Soon after you sign up for your Google Analytics account, you will see a snippet of code that you will need to paste into your website source code. If you are not comfortable with messing around with your website code, you should have a knowledgeable friend or a webmaster paste the code on your site for you.

The important thing to remember is that you should paste this snippet on every page throughout your website. The reason why is because you want to see which pages on your site gets the most visits. Don’t just paste the code on your home page and call it a day. If your website is a content management system like WordPress or Drupal, you will need to install the code using a special plugin or on the correct .php file.

*Here is a little trick: Try to paste the snippet at the bottom of your source code. There is no need to let it get in the way of search engine indexing by having it at the top of the page.

Installing Google Analytics on WordPress

Since most bloggers use WordPress as their content management system, I’ll go over how to install the Google Analytics plugin in more detail.

  1. Download the Google Analytics Plugin here: WordPress Google Analytics Plugin
  2. Open the .zip file and upload the entire folder into your plugins directory via FTP.
  3. Login to your WordPress site and go to the plugins control panel and activate Google Analytics.
  4. In your plugins control panel you will see a “Settings” link next to the “deactivate” link for Google Analytics. Click “Settings”.
  5. Paste your Google Analytics account number in to the appropriate field (this should be the first field up at the top).
  6. Go to the bottom of the page and click “Update Settings”.

All in all, this is a pretty easy install. I would suggest reading the read me file first before you install any plugin. Not all versions of WordPress have the same admin interface.


2 responses to “Free Website Statistics – Google Analytics”

  1. Google analytics is a great tool. but one thing i do not like is the delay in it. here for i use great tool both of them!

  2. admin says:

    Can you explain to our readers what does exactly? Why is it better? Or what does it do better?

2 Comments on Free Website Statistics – Google Analytics