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3 Reasons Google Analytics Fails for SEO

Discussion in 'SEO Reviews' started by netultimat, Jun 18, 2009.

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  1. netultimat

    netultimat New Member

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    If you are serious about search engine optimization, Google Analytics is NOT for you. I know it’s tough to look past the (non-existent) price tag, ease of use and conversion tools — but trust me when I say that Google Analytics is a flawed program for your needs.
    #1 - Limitations of Technology
    The first trouble is that Google Analytics uses what is called “page tagging technology”. Without getting too deep on this, it is important that we understand this one fact. That is, the program is only capable of recording information on browsers that execute JavaScript.
    Automated browsers (including all spiders like Googlebot, Yahoo! Slurp, MSNBot, etc.) never execute JavaScript in your source code. So, while Google Analytics may do a great job of tracking your human visitors, they’re unable to give you the goods on spider behavior.
    In order to make the most of your SEO efforts you need to know when a spider is coming in, what pages they’re requesting, and how often they’ll come back. Using this information is how you can launch and optimize new pages, set up the best internal links and prioritize your source code changes.
    While it sounds strange, I would go so far as to say that tracking spiders is just as important as tracking your visitors.
    #2 — No Support for Log Files
    I’ve met many novice SEOs who rely solely on Google Analytics. While it makes me wonder how much they are actually doing for their clients, I urge them to begin using log file analyzers.
    Log file analysis opposes page tagging when it comes to the technologies behind web analytics. Tools that rely on log files are using hard coded server logs to mine all information. Every request for a file on your site is recorded, along with an IP address, user agent, and in most cases — the referral string. While it can be a bit more work to use these applications — the data you get back makes it a necessary evil.
    The best part about log analysis is in the filters you can build. I know the Google Analytics tries to address this to some degree but it’s lacking at best in the control that you have.
    Sadly, Google Analytics will not allow you to upload log files (or, retrieve them via FTP/HTTP) as other applications do. If they could build this feature in, it would be a win-win situation. You could use GA to track all of your data — and so could Google!
    #3 — You’re at Google’s Mercy!
    When you need to check reports, you access them online via the Google Analytics interface. The reports cannot easily be taken with you, and you have no way of archiving your data efficiently.
    Worse still, is that Google retains control over your data at all times. If they change the interface or style of reporting, you are stuck with having to deal with what they give you.
    If we’re talking about YOUR web site, YOUR visitors and YOUR analytics… Why should Google have all the power?
    Before thinking that the product is complete too, leave the analysis to experts in web analytics. According to Matt Durgin’s blog, Forrester Research was less than thrilled by GA…
    Google Analytics was reviewed, but ranked far below the commercial solutions — further back than Urchin (whom Google acquired and re-branded as Google Analytics) ever ranked behind its competitors. This could be evidence that Google will not devote the resources to keep up with the commercial solutions on the market. If this trend continues, look for a larger discrepancy between the “free” Google Analytics, and the commercial, professional tools on the market.


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  2. Old Admin

    Old Admin Administrator

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    Nice Points, thanks for sharing .

    Look forward to seeing more posts from you:biggrin:
  3. sagar.best

    sagar.best New Member

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    Well yep somehow these points are right... i think they should work on the drawbacks..
  4. akanglil

    akanglil New Member

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    nice information...
    very usefull for me...
    thanks for sharing...
  5. shubh

    shubh Member

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    Goof write-up. The first problem with Google Analytics is that each website must have its own profile if you want to view the results separately. Setting up website profiles, each with their own goals, is time consuming. When Google Analytics was released, it should not have needed separate scripts to track each website, but rather a single script that will work on any site.
  6. Old Admin

    Old Admin Administrator

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    its hardly time consuming ? takes about 3 mins from start to finish. Separate codes for each site is better than one that doesn't perform correctly dont you agree ? , i have around 70 sites in my analytic account and i cant see a problem with putting a code in, i think the goals settings are pointless however, i know when a goal is hit , i dont need some script to tell me :blink:
  7. ~kev~

    ~kev~ Active Member

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    Uh, google Google Analytics is not for optimizing your site, its just a traffic tag.

    If you want a google tool to optimize your site, look at Google Webmaster Tools. That is what you should be looking at, not Google Analytics.
  8. Designer74

    Designer74 New Member

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    Very useful information, thanks for sharing. Although I do still like Google Analytics just to give me some idea where my traffic is coming from, along with other site statistic tools.
  9. Humza Bajwa

    Humza Bajwa Active Member

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    Nice post. Though, normally, I use google analytics with a few other programs to track my site's performance and what not.
  10. sazymi

    sazymi New Member

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    I totally agree with you Kev, its how they get wrong in their way they forgot the differences of the two.
  11. ~kev~

    ~kev~ Active Member

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    You know whats really bad - when it rains, my hair gets wet. Screw the trees and the grass, they can just die from lack of water. I just do not want to get wet walking out to me truck.

    ---------------

    Regardless of the overall good that something does, people will always complain. Nothing in this world is perfect.

    Google Analytics is a tool used to track traffic, not SEO your site.
  12. White

    White Member

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    Google Analytics isn't for SEO purposes. It's for purposes of monitoring your traffic so you can properly adjust your marketing strategy and offer promotional items based on what your visitors are doing on your site.

    If you want the SEO part, use Google Webmaster Tools.

    Pretty bad article on behalf of the original poster if you ask me.
  13. Humza Bajwa

    Humza Bajwa Active Member

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    OMG! The trees! :O
  14. Lolito

    Lolito New Member

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    Google Analytic is the best web tracker but the reason why I don't like the Analytic is I can't check the traffic of a website by time to time unlike to other web tracker tool.
  15. SeoKungFu

    SeoKungFu Active Member

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    I agree that GA is not the best tool, especially if you focus on those ( amongst many others! ) three downsides.
    On the contrary, it can be useful and insightful for many things.
    For example I make use of keyword -> landing page -> bounce rate analysis a lot and find that helpful. Whenever I see poorly performing keywords I make some copy/structure changes and it real works out good.
  16. trafficke

    trafficke New Member

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    The biggest flaw is that it only tracks about 90% of your visitors. People with plugins like adblock installed that block javascript will not be tracked.
  17. adda4u

    adda4u New Member

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    i think this topic is totally aganist to Analytics


    GA will really helpful to track the visitors and analyze the things.
  18. jaikanth12

    jaikanth12 Member

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    The 3 reasons for google analytic s failure are:
    1.I forgot to put the Analytics tags into my new template files.
    2.When you ever publish a new site, go over the checklist and make sure that you didn’t forget the basic stuff. I’ll try to get together and publish a good checklist for pre-launch web sites in another post.
    3.When Google Analytics will be released, it should not have needed separate scripts to track each website, but rather a single script that will work on any site.
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