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Open source web analytics

October 26th, 2009 1 comment

I recently wrote an article on website analytics software and mentioned Google Analytics to be the best one out there. I still think Google Analytics is pretty good compared to many out there but the only thing I dislike about it is that it does not track site visits in real time and so there is a lag in time before you can see detailed analytical details of your website traffic and visitor information.

Well earlier today I came across an open source analytics software that visually is comparable with Google Analytics and that’s called Piwik.

Piwik is an open source (GPL license) web analytics software. It gives interesting reports on your website visitors, your popular pages, the search engines keywords they used, the language they speak… and so much more.

Piwik aims to be an open source alternative to Google Analytics.  What does this mean to webmasters, online based businesses and everyone else?  It translated to great news as all it’s features are built inside plugins and a developer can make their own plugins for a specific purpose.   So if you wanted to alter the user interface, you can do so unlike with Google service.

What makes Piwik unique from the competition:

  1. Piwik’s features are built inside plugins: you can add new features and remove the ones you don’t need. If you are a developer, you can easily build your own web analytics plugins!
  2. You own your data: because Piwik is installed on your server, the data is stored in your own database and you can get all the statistics using open APIs (publishing the data in many formats: xml, json, php, csv)
  3. The user interface is fully customizable: you can drag and drop the widgets you want to display and create a report especially tailored to you!
  4. Real time web analytics reports: in Piwik, by default reports are generated in real time. For high traffic websites, you can choose the frequency for reports to be processed

Open source software gives the freedom to alter it’s original source into anything else that best fits it’s users.  If you want to learn more about piwik, visit their website here.

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