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7 Best Website Analytics Tools for Startups, Creators, Bloggers & Entrepreneurs

In just recent years, there's been a lot of attention around Google Analytics, especially around privacy. Whilst Google Analytics alternatives have always existed, due to the new privacy concerns and regulations in Europe and around the world, there are now privacy-first website analytics tools. I currently use one now called Plausible Analytics. I recommend reading more about privacy and analytics, especially this post by Fathom, and this post by Plausible Analytics (both market leaders). I also encourage following both companies and founders on Twitter and reading their blogs - they share good updates about analytics and privacy regulations from around the world.

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Google Analytics

About: 
I think it's safe to say we all know what Google Analytics is. Still the leading platform for website analytics around the world.

Top Features:

Whilst many of us know the core features of GA, it's really more the advanced features and reports lots of people don't use enough (in my opinion) which I'm going to mention. Also, I'll be referring to GA4 features. Not to mention, the upgrade has capabilities with predictive analytics, ML and smarter insights.
Track specific events on your website. You can setup basic events without the need of a developer, up to 300 of them. From what I've seen with numerous startups now using GA4 is they're underutilising custom reports. For example, by setting up behaviour and funnel analysis reports, view how visitors from initial acquisition to what pages they visit, events and more. Seriously powerful tools. Go deeper with cohort analysis and how long it takes users to convert from certain campaigns you run and lots more.
If you're running Google Ads, then you love the deeper insights and capabilities with GA4. See how users interact from the moment they click your ads, to key events and funnels, to of course conversion events such as purchases (conversions are really ease to setup - up to 20 of them). What's really powerful and any paid marketer knows this, is that audiences who do certain events such as conversions, are automatically excluded thanks to the integration. On top of that for any source and events, you can see specific AI-powered recommendations.
Predictive
Event tracking
Custom reports
Pricing: 
It's free to install and use. For larger organisations, look into Google Analytics 360 for more powerful features.
Web/App
Freemium
$-$$
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Plausible Analytics

About: 
Whilst Google Analytics is a powerful analytics tool for website owners and startups, I'm concious of privacy, so a platform I now use on this site and a couple of other projects is Plausible Analytics.

Top Features:

Hosted in the EU, with EU cloud infrastructure, stays up to date with the latest in GDPR, CCPA and PECR laws around website analytics. Every website visitor is anonymous and no cookies are used for tracking.
The script is lightweight and is super simple to install. Like you would with GA, you can setup goals/conversions, track campaigns with UTMs and track custom events. Even outbound links you can track.
Not only are the privacy and key analytics features are great, the dashboard is really slick and so good to look at. Much easier to navigate, segment users, dates, locations, as well as go deeper into specific campaigns insights, sources of traffic and more. You can also integrate Google Search Console for organic insights which is really beneficial.
Privacy
lightweight
GSC integration
Pricing: 
Pricing depends on how many pageviews you want to track per month. For 10k pageviews per month, pricing starts at $9 per month for up to 50 websites.
Web/App
Paid
$-$$$
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Fathom Analytics

About: 
Another alternative for simple, privacy-focused analytics is Fathom.

Top Features:

Fathom is setup to ensure it's compliant with GDPR, CCPA, PECR and ePrivacy laws. The script is also lightweight which means it's good for page speed loads (which is better for SEO). All traffic hosted in the EU and never leaves.
A cool feature is that Fathom still works even when users have adblockers turned on, meaning you get a more accurate picture of your analytics. Another nice feature is being notified when your site is down (via slack, email or text), which is available across all plans.
You can also track events, conversions and track campaigns with UTMs.
Privacy
great UI
Event tracking
Pricing: 
A 7-day free trial is an option for new users, then pricing for up to 100k pageviews per month starts at $14 per month.
Web/App
Paid
$-$$$
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Adobe Analytics

About: 
For established businesses and larger enterprises, a good solution for advanced analysis and insights is Adobe Analytics.

Top Features:

Adobe Analytics is very much your end-to-end, 360-view solution for website, marketing, attribution and predictive analytics.
Track through multiple sources of such as web, email, etc. Setup rules, tags, and even data warehouses and feeds. Additonally, you can setup offline integrations such as your CRM or custom solution for deeper, more accurate insights (good for conversion data).
Get detailed breakdowns of data through advanced segmentation, cohort analysis, cross-device, flows/funnels and customer journey views. Understand and predict through ML, future patterns of what what may happen, even with anomaly detection which is awesome. Creating segments is easy, perfect for advertising audiencing targeting, such as remarketing.
Predictive
Custom reports
Pricing: 
You need to request a demo.
Web/App
Demo
$-$$$$
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Matomo

About: 
An alternative to Google Analytics used by over 1mil+ websites that focuses on privacy, whilst packed with features, is Matomo.

Top Features:

The other two privacy-first tools I've mentioned are both simple enough when it comes to features, whereas Matomo has many detailed analytics features similar to GA.
The platform is fairly easy to setup if you use the cloud version of the tool, or if you're a developer or want more control, you can self-host. If you use GA, there's also the option to import your data into Matomo and then you can remove GA.
Make sure to check out the demo site. You will see features that you can use including multi-attribution reporting, heatmaps, cohorts, custom reports, organic/SEO and lots more.
detailed analytics
feature-rich
Funnels
Pricing: 
You can self-host Matomo for free, even if you get millions of hits. If you choose their cloud option, pricing for up to 50k hits per month is $23 per month.
Web/App
Paid
$-$$$$
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Oribi

About: 
Another website analytics solution on the market used by some household brands globally is Oribi.

Top Features:

Recieve detailed insights without the clutter and find trends within your data through easy reporting.
Unlike most other platforms, you can track events automatically which is pretty awesome, perfect for non tech-savvy people who just want to get good data about their website visitors and not paying money for developers.
Build funnels and conversion paths with ease, get good attribution data, as well as smart insights into your analytics which are digestible and actionable.
no code
Funnels
Attribution
Pricing: 
There are 3 plans available depending on the type of business you are. For SaaS businesses, pricing begins at $945 per month, billed monhtly for up to 25k users.
Web/App
Paid
$-$$$$
Favourite

Gosquared

About: 
Gosquared is a GA, simple and privacy-focused analytics platform that does a lot more than just wesbite analytics.

Top Features:

Included in the product suite alongside analytics, you can setup personalised messaging and engaging campaigns with email automation, pop-ups, forms, CTA prompts and lots more.
The second section is that you can also setup live chat as part of the platform. Pretty awesome.
With analytics, the dashboard is really nice and makes it simple to digest information and get a solid overview in one interface. It's easy to setup and you can recieve email digest reports daily if you wish to keep on top of your most important metrics.
Privacy
Live chat
Engagement
Pricing: 
Pricing starts at $9 per month for up to 100k pageviews. Then the max. plan of $99 per month can track up to 2.5 million pageviews per month.
Web/App
Paid
$-$$$
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Updated on:
April 4, 2022
Note: Pricing, plans, and homepage images change overtime. Pricing recorded as of 3rd April, 2022. If you see any changes required, please let me know. If you suggest any tools to add, get in touch. 😊

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⚡ Frequently Asked Questions ⚡

Which website analytics tools have the best privacy features?
Whilst I've been a marketer for many years, it's only been the past few years I've become more aware and make sure I go that extra step (as well as advise clients do too) to look after users' privacy. One of the key requirements as a marketer is a good analytics tool for websites and landing pages, but which have features that are privacy-friendly? The two top options which I have spoken about are Plausible and Fathom. Highly recommend diving deeper into both and trying them out.
What are the best free website analytics tools?
The only truly free option that you can use is Google Analytics, which is used by most websites around the world. However, like with any free tool, there's a catch. You are the product, meaning your data and your user's data are being used for their commercial purposes. Consider paying a small monthly fee for a privacy-focused tool that respects privacy.
Are there any tools that include split-testing features, visual recording, heatmaps or funnel views?
The simple answer is yes, although not all are mentioned in this resource. Check out CRO, product analytics and other categories. Some options include Splitbee, Hotjar, and Google Optimize.
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