Author Topic: Piwik Tracking  (Read 7395 times)

Drastic

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Piwik Tracking
« on: October 26, 2010, 12:12:26 PM »
So I've got away from hardcore logfile analysis like the old days. Pouring over referrals, daily/weekly trends and just knowing everything there is to know just isn't exciting or helpful to my current plan. Plus it's a PITA to set it all up on every site, and keep up with it.

I've resorted to free statcounter.com tracking on small projects and quick sites just to get a pulse. It's easy to see daily traffic from a multitude of sites on one pageview and I can dig in if I want. It's pretty limited, but serves this function well.

I just tried out piwik self hosted JS tracker. It's really slick, open source and works great. You host it on your own server on a mysql db, and one install can serve as many sites as your db server can handle. I don't use it like this since someone could finger which sites you own, but might in the future. It's super easy to install, almost just a couple clicks, and just works. This is the most robust free solution I've seen and it runs on your server.

Next up - clicky. Tracks clicks and hotspots through your site. Not free, and not self hosted though.

DrCool

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Re: Piwik Tracking
« Reply #1 on: October 26, 2010, 05:44:07 PM »
Have you ever tried Crazyegg? It gives heatmaps of your site so you can see exactly where people are clicking and what links they click on.

One of the best uses I have found for it is you can even see just regular text people try to click on. If there is a phrase that keeps getting clicks you can just make it into a link and see an almost instant increase in sales.


JamesR

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Re: Piwik Tracking
« Reply #2 on: October 26, 2010, 06:20:30 PM »
We've been using Crazy Egg a bit to track changes/testing.  Works well for that - the visual "confetti" view is very helpful

bill

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Re: Piwik Tracking
« Reply #3 on: October 27, 2010, 01:10:18 AM »
Piwik looks pretty slick, but how does it compare to G's Analytics? According to their FAQ you can run it simultaneously with other tracking. I'll have to look around and see if there are appreciable differences.

I have a bunch of sites that I don't particularly worry whether anyone knows they're related. That might be a good place to try an Analytics alternative.

Drastic

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Re: Piwik Tracking
« Reply #4 on: October 27, 2010, 12:24:57 PM »
>Crazy Egg
Yeah that's another one I'm interested in. Actually I think that was what I was thinking of when I mentioned clicky's heatmaps.
Still chepebhasturd only approves of chepe stuff. Plus hosting my own is such a pull.

>but how does it compare to G's Analytics?
I should have added the disclaimer of never using G analytics. I just don't like apps with anal in them. Seriously, I have only looked at G from a clicks to advertiser standpoint on their custom tracking setup. I'm still fighting to keep that G tattoo off my rear.

>According to their FAQ you can run it simultaneously with other tracking.
Sure, it's just a js tracker. Add code to footer and done, don't think it would interfere with anything else.

bill

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Re: Piwik Tracking
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2010, 06:55:27 AM »
Quote
Quote
>According to their FAQ you can run it simultaneously with other tracking.
Sure, it's just a js tracker. Add code to footer and done, don't think it would interfere with anything else.

Yeah, but all those JS calls start to bog down your page loading speed awful quick. ;)

4Eyes

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Re: Piwik Tracking
« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2010, 12:23:00 AM »
Recently did a test comparing Google Analytics, OWA Stats and Piwik (usign its php tracking option).

Basically, one of our clients was beating us about the head with poor performance stats that we knew were wrong - his orders were up, but he was complaining that traffic was down by half (and, of course it was 'all your fault').  It turned out one of his own people had installed some js just prior to the js stats tracking call, and it was hanging so long that the tracking didn't register a hit.

So, to make sure it never happens again, we installed extra tracking on the site as a backup and to check the differences in how these free stats packages record visitor data.

w/c    11/10/2010VisitsUnique VisitsPageviewsEnquiriesBounce Rate
Analytics - js45974153137176755%
OWA Stats - js48554362100267560%
Piwik - php47254267116806956%

The actual number of enquiries over that period was 78 - which only analysing the log file itself showed correctly.
Some of the other differences will be down to how the each define a 'unique visitor', but still some interesting differences.

For it to be a totally fair test, I know I should really run the test again with the order of the js in the html reversed - at the moment the Analytics code is positioned after the OWA stats code - but I can't be bothered.


Piwik is by far the nicest to use - far easier for clients to understand, but Analytics makes it far easier to segregate PPC and organic stats. If it could easily do this, I would drop Analytics in a flash.
OWA stats, despite being closest to the correct # of enquiries, is a bit sucky in other areas.

I am told that using Analytics' Asynchronous tracking code may improve things, so will be giving that a try soon.



« Last Edit: November 02, 2010, 12:24:35 AM by 4Eyes »