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Google Analytics

May 11th, 2006

Yes! I (finally) got my invite to Google Analytics (GA), formerly Urchin Stats. It requires you to insert a script to each web page on the site (simple to do with a blog site–just edit the templates), and according to theory, the stats should start being generated within 24 hours.

I’ve been looking forward to this as a way of finally discounting referral, trackback, and comment spam in my stats; up until now, spammers have been throwing my numbers off, and even with AwStats, nice as it is, there is no way to weed them out. I’ve had to simply guess at how many visitors actually come to my site. GA has filters that can–hopefully–clean out the unwanted spam and show me how many actual visitors are coming through.

Problem is, I’ve been looking at the GA site and the filters seem powerful but complex. Also, they mention that you can only screen incoming data–though their “exclude” filter seems like you can at least temporarily screen out existing data. It’s not 100% clear from the help files, so I’ll have to wait for data to come in before I can figure it out. So we’ll see how that goes. It’ll probably take several days as I try new things with various data sets as they arrive. Here’s hoping….

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