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Urchin Reborn: Google Web Analytics

Have you installed your free Google Web Analytics package yet?.

Now this is a curious business model. Buy one of the best web anlytics software suites in the world. Repackage it and release it for free on your own servers.

I checked the terms of service. They don’t seem to suggest that Google is free to use their data for their own analysis but I haven’t looked carefully enough – I’m sure it’s in there somewhere.

I am very happy about this as I had been very unhappy with my stats package from my existing host and the otherwise excellent statcounter (paid version) doesn’t give good historical analysis (the last week or ten days are very well covered on the other hand).

As it is javascript-based, I suspect Google web analysis won’t help with spiders either.

For server side stats, we are recommending AWstats. Much more complete than Webalizer in terms of referral and far ahead of Analog, the principal free competition. Client side stats aren’t worth considering as downloading server logs is just not efficient.

As the departed Rudl used to say – automate everything you can!


  1. Yup they are free to use your data and it is obvious that they will use it as a factor in the ranking process:

    1. INFORMATION RIGHTS AND PUBLICITY . Google and its wholly owned subsidiaries may retain and use, subject to the terms of its Privacy Policy (located at link to , or such other URL as Google may provide from time to time), information collected in Your use of the Service.
  2. Thanks Razvan for clarifying that. This is really worth noting, as the information that Google can get about your site by having the stats internally is far richer than anything they could get any other way.

    Potentially Google could really hammer spammy sites this way, or conversely, strongly reward very sticky sites.

    Be careful. Do look a gift horse in the mouth. Look before you leap.

  3. […] hundreds of dollars per month. More controversially, I’ve also signed up some of my clients for Google Analytics so we will have more and better stats for free. For now Google Analytics is too slow to respond to […]

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