A large number of bloggers, ecommerce and general web site owners default to using Google Analytics to track their web site traffic, growth and evolution. In fact, Google Analytics is currently running on up to 50 million web sites. It is the first thing most of the web site owners do – adding Google Analytics.
When you or your web site users surf the web, you very personal information, such as your credit card number, medical record, home address and all much more data that is generated by you on daily basis. Your information is private and it remains private.
Not with Google. Google tracks and mines your searches, along with up to 300 other data points about you, every time you visit a web site. This information gets packaged into a profile, which is shared with ad networks who are integrated among tens of millions of web sites and apps.
In fact, even an incognito mode in your browser isn’t going to protect you or your users either. Google collects your IP and utilized “fingerprinting” to collect the necessary data points.
As for the incognito mode in your Chrome browser: it is extremely misleading, all if does is erases the local browsing history after you complete your browsing session. The incognito mode does nothing to keep your IP address private from Google and their advertising partners.
1. Google Analytics is an Overkill for Most Users
The number of data points that Google Analytics collects is an overkill for most users. It is overwhelmingly complex to the point where special training is required to use it. The vast majority need only a fraction of the tools for their web site.
Here are the most common questions site owners want answered:
- Is the page growing? Has it plateaued, or is it devolving?
- Where are my visitors coming from? What sites bring the traffic?
- What pages are people visiting?
- How many visitors are on my site right now?
Here are some less common and less critical questions site owners want answered:
- Do my visitors use a mobile phone, tablet or a desktop?
- What browsers do my they use?
- What country to my visitors live in?
- Which parts of my landing page do visitors click on the most or the least?
- Why doesn’t my most important page convert? I wish I could see what my visitors see!
As it turns out, you do not need a complicated myriad of features, which create a number of privacy-violating issues like Google Analytics. This is exactly you should try PrivateAnalytix.
2. Google Analytics is a Privacy Liability from the GDPR, PECR and CCPA Standpoint
Though, this was not the internet standard before, but now every site owner must disclose that they use Google Analytics to their visitors.
The rules are even more stringent in California, where your web site must identify if their visitors are from California and, according to CCPA (California Consumer Privacy Act) display a special popup where the user can select what data can be used. You must have seen the “Do not sell my information” banners. This is exactly what need to be displayed on every web site.
Operating in accordance to these regulations requires programming time and effort. These privacy popups are not a complicated algorithm on their own. If your web site, blog or business is not adhering to these standards, you can be at significant legal risk. Just hope that none of your users does not report your web site.
You can avoid this headache altogether by switching to a privacy-respecting alternative to Google Analytics.
Google protects itself from a potential legal harm by passing the liability on you.
According to Google: “you must ensure that certain disclosures are given to, and consents obtained from, end users in the European Economic Area along with the UK. If you fail to comply with this policy, we may limit or suspend your use of the Google product and/or terminate your agreement”.
4. Google Analytics is Blocked by Many Browsers and Browser Extensions
Internet users of the current time are much more informed than before. More and more get fed up by ADs, fingerprinting, behavioral profiling, targeted advertisement, that they simply use Adblockers (uBlock Origin).
Approximately 50% of the web sites most likely use Google Analytics. That is approximately 29 Million web sites worldwide. The number is smaller for general population, but approximately 50% of tech savvy audience blocks Google Analytics on web sites.
5. Data Sampling: Lower Visitor Tracking Precision
Google Analytics uses “data sampling”. In data analysis, sampling is the practice of analyzing a subset of all data in order to uncover the meaningful information in the larger data set. Here is a closer look at that. This basically means that the more visitors you get, the more inaccurate your data might become.
In short, a certain percentage of the collected data is analyzed, beyond a certain threshold, patterns are analyzed and assumptions are made.
Here is an example of Google’s (2019) sampling thresholds:
Ad-hoc queries of your data are subject to the following general thresholds for sampling:
[Google] Analytics Standard: 500k sessions at the property level for the date range you are using
[Google] Analytics 360: 100M sessions at the view level for the date range you are using
PrivateAnalytics is built with simplicity, ease of use in mind. You own 100% of the data and you decide what to do with it.
We have used Google Analytics for years and we understand the challenges that come with its use. We have built PrivateAnalytix to respect the privacy of your visitors and to help you understand how your web site is evolving in seconds.
With PrivateAnalytix, we believe we have built a truly better alternative to Google Analytics that is:
- Fully open source – the code can be accessed and checked by anyone here
- Very Simple – eliminates the need for cookie consents
- No Personal Identifiable Data is Collects – eliminates the need for GDPR and CCPA consents
- Heatmaps – see where users click the most/the least
- Session Replays – See exactly what your visitors see, fix issues, increase ROI, save time
Give PrivateAnallytix a try absolutely free for 14 days. We hope you found this message useful and can’t wait to serve you.