Ben is a lifelong Nintendo fan who likes to build websites, and make video games. He buys way too much Lego.
I really like Google Analytics. I use it pretty much exclusively for my website stat tracking, and the recent update is wonderful. However there are a few things I would like to change to improve it even more.
In case you haven’t heard of Google Analytics, it’s a service offered by Google which tracks the visitors to your website. The security concious amongst you will be happy to know that no personally identifiable information is sent, and the web designers… well you’ll likely have heard of it anyway – but it let’s you see where people go on your site, and how they found you.
I’m writing this post as a way to firstly list what I would like changed, secondly as a way to see what other people would like changed, and thirdly to see if there is actually a way to do the things I want without them changing anything.
5. More speed
To tell the truth this isn’t a feature I am too worried about, but I asked on the 9rules member forum (it’s private – sorry) for their opinions and this was the overwhelming top response. They wanted stats that updated quicker. The reason I am not too worried about this is that, as far as I can tell, the stats do update in almost real time (or at least every few hours). What you need to do is adjust the date to include the current day and then you can see the most recent statistics.
4. & 3. Better Links
This one has bugged me since Google Analytics was first released, there must be a technical reason for it not happening. Basically when viewing top content if you wish to view one of the pages on your own site you have to create the site url yourself. There is nothing to click to take you to your site and view the content. More importantly if I want to view a referring site then I have to recompile the link myself (copy the url, copy the referring page, stitch them together). I like to see who’s linking to me so why isn’t there a link somewhere on these pages to take me to the referring site?
2. More Conversion Goals
I have only recently started using these, but I can already see that 4 just isn’t enough. To tell the truth i am not sure what there is a limit at all, with all the things Google is capable of I’m sure increasing the goals should be fairly trivial.
1. Hourly traffic breakdown
One of the things I liked to use Google Analytics for was checking when my site was accessed. I liked being able to see the spikes in traffic, being able to tell if I had been stumbleuponed or if my site had been down at all (no hits = broken website?). As far as I can tell that feature has now been removed, and that frustrates me.
This list is largely my opinion but I’m sure there are other people who must be feeling something similar to me so please let me know if there’s anything you’d like to see as well, or even if you use the service (and if not why not?).