Learning Movable Type: Site Statistics


Updated February 22, 2007

There are several ways to get statistics about your Movable Type weblog. Most web hosts give you access to some statistics regarding your site as a matter of course - referral logs (list of sites that link to you in which someone has clicked on the link to get to your site), number of hits, number of page views, etc. If you want more information, i.e. the search terms used to find your site, the most recent entry pages to your site, the mix of browsers and OS platforms of those viewing your site, the length of time people spend on average on your site, you can use a site statistics service, also known as a hit counter. These services work by having you put a small piece of code on the pages of your site that you want tracked. There are several free services available that have you place a small image file on your site that links back to the service statistics page where you can see your site statistics. For a fee, you can make the image go away and make the statistics invisible to anyone but yourself.

I have found a few free services to recommend.

  1. Google Analytics. Google Analytics from Google is probably the best free service available. The free service offers more statistics and analysis of those statistics than most site owners will ever need.

    google-analytics-view.jpg


  2. Site Meter. I use Site Meter (www.sitemeter.com) on my recipe site and now I've added it to Learning Movable Type (scroll down and you'll see a small rainbow colored box on the left). It gives me statistics on visits and page views (per day, week, month, and year), most popular entry and exit pages, breakdown on browser and OS platform types, and time zones and languages.
  3. ServuStats. ServuStats (www.servustats.com) provides more free interesting statistics than Site Meter including search engines used, search query terms, and the screen resolutions of your visitors' monitors. One issue with ServuStats is that when you click on the ServuStat button to get statistics, not only do you go to the stats page for your site, but a huge advertisement pop-up shows up behind the other open browser windows. A downside to the ServuStats javascript code is that it will cause any page on which it is located to not validate as XHTML valid.
  4. Bravenet. Similar to Servustats, Bravenet.com offers a slightly different mix of stats - no search terms, but tracks the difference between first-time visitors and returning visitors. Clicking on the Bravenet button also generates pop-ups.

Please let me know (in the comments below) if you are using another site statistics service that you can recommend. (Please no ads).

Links:
AWStats - Advanced Web Statistics software package for hosting the actual stats software on your site.
Extreme Tracking - similar to Site Meter and ServuStats.
Nedstat - puts links to sites using Nedstat on home page.
BlogPatrol - similar to Bravenet and ServuStat but without popups.
StatCounter - invisible web tracking.


Posted by Elise Bauer on March 5, 2004 1:32 PM to Learning Movable Type http://www.learningmovabletype.com/