alex sysoef

5 Stats Tracking Plugins For Your WordPress Blog

My blog stats for the past year
Image by gillicious via Flickr

Ladies and Gentleman, today you life and your blogging habits, as you know them will change forever! And not necessary to the best as I’m about to show you how to get MORE information about your blog, how your visitors interact with your content and where they are coming from than most bloggers need to know!

In Fact – Stats Tracking is One Of The Most Addictive And Time Wasting Activities You, As A Blogger Can Participate In!

I highly recommend you stop reading RIGHT NOW and don’t click that “Read More..” link to save your sanity and time!

OK, so I see you are determined to know! Well, this could be a GREAT thing as well as BAD thing for you. You have to exercise the discipline and limit time you dedicate to stat tracking to avoid waste of time and if you manage to do so – you are going to be a MUCH MORE INFORMED blogger.

5 Stats Tracking Plugins

…presented in this post will allow you to see more details about your blog traffic, its source and how your visitors interact with your content than you ever thought possible!

1. WordPress.com Stats

Along with Google Analytic’s this plugin might be that is needed for the majority of bloggers as it allows you to re-use same WordPress.com API you are already using for Akismet and presents you with most of the useful statistics you need:

  • Top Pages and posts for different time frames with default being today
  • Your referrers, to help you see who sends you traffic
  • What key phrases lead from Search Engines to your blog posts
  • What links were clicked in your blog content
  • List of incoming links, mentions of your blog url on other blogs

Because it is a plugin maintained by WordPress core team, it is always timely updated and you can be sure it will continue to be compatible with all the latest upgrades.

wordpress-stats

2. Google Analytic’s Integration Plugins

Instead of picking and choosing any specific plugin, I simply give you URL to search results in WordPress.org plugin repository. You choose which one gives you the options you need as this breed of plugins integrates Google Analytics into your blog.

I do believe that you MUST have Google Analytics on your blog for stats tracking and comprehensive reporting but I choose NOT to use plugins but simply manually insert code into fotter.php right before the </body> closing tag. Just inspect the source code of this blog and you see what I mean.

I like to use as few plugins as possible and by doing this manually I save on page load by not having an extra plugin for the task that can be easily accomplished by hand. But if you are not into modifying theme files or like to switch themes often – these plugins will make sure that you blog will be tracked no matter what you do!

google-analytics

3. Visitor Maps and Who’s Online

In my testing this plugin added to the page load speed and I eventually disabled it but if you want to know EXACTLY who is visiting your blog, what OS, Browser they are using, where they are coming from and what is it they are reading – this plugin will be a God sent!

I promise you that you can get more information than you ever bargained for by using this one but do pay attention if it impacts you blog loading speed, as implementation of this one might actually cause people to click away instead of waiting for your content to load and all you will see is How Many People Left Your Blog without reading it!

visitor-maps

4. Lijit Statistics

This plugin allows you to integrate your WordPress blog with free Lijit account. Great option to enhance your blog search as well as to get a LOT of information about your blog. It does help you get more traffic as your blog becomes part of their searched network and presented on other blogs :-)

Anytime I can get free traffic – I’m game, especially when it is integrated with my favorite time wasting exercise – Traffic Stats Checking!

Couple of the most important statistics I look for from this one is Last Searches Performed on My Blog and Last Searches That Returned No Results!

It opens up an opportunity for me to create content my readers and visitors are looking for and one that doesn’t exist yet. Obviously that the younger your blog – more opportunities you will have as with age it seems sometimes that we cover pretty much most of the important ideas :-)

lijit

5. Feed Stats

Yeah, when we are talking about stats – your RSS readers information is VERY important. Number of RSS readers on the blog is in fact one of the aspects many bloggers, including myself always put forth as it shows Stable Readership Base that can be used when selling advertisement space on your blog among the few other things :-)

This plugin give you easy access to see:

  • Subscribers
  • Hits
  • Reach (see the FAQ section for more information about this)
  • Item click-through
  • Item Views

Pretty nice but it does require that you burn your feed through FeedBurner as it uses its data to provide you with stats.

feed-stats

Conclusion

5 plugins I have just shared with you can make you a lot more informed blogger and help you determine what works and what doesn’t in your promotional efforts but I recommend you use these plugins in moderation!

Just because something is available to you – doesn’t mean all of it have to be used. If you attempt to utilize all plugins at same time – more than likely your blog load speed will be impacted!

Choose what stats are important to you – use appropriate plugin to get it! Enjoy and as always – comment on this post and share it using options provided!

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42 Responses to “5 Stats Tracking Plugins For Your WordPress Blog”

  1. I use Google and Ligit and I am very happy with both.
    .-= John Paul Aguiar´s last blog ..SEO Tips For Your Twitter and Facebook Page To Rank You Higher On Google =-.

  2. Jadah says:

    Great List.. I use google analytics, but love another plugin called : count-per-day that shows you what articles are visited each day , how many reads you have had from the same visitor, statistics graphics, month comparatives, and you can configure it to avoid bots counts and many more.. Keeping track of your blog visitors is sure addictive.
    Thanks for sharing
    .-= Jadah´s last blog ..Turning yourself into a Remote Control =-.

  3. Jaspal says:

    nice write up .. i use first 2 for my blog :)
    .-= Jaspal´s last blog ..100+ Facebook Apps For Productivity And Tools For Achieving All Your Goals =-.

  4. Thom says:

    Stats don’t mean a hill of beans to me. I could care less cuz I just blog to have fun and that’s it. No money or anything else involved. LOL. Thanks for stopping by my site :) Much appreciated
    .-= Thom´s last blog ..An TP4WW Update =-.

    • TheSpotter says:

      Thom, you are one of the few who doesn’t. I blog for fun and profit at same time. I think when you combine the two you get most powerful combination.

  5. Dena says:

    I personally like the analytics one. Somehow it has always been a problem for me to do it manually :P
    I’ll try each plugin out. Thanks :)

  6. Liz Bolton says:

    Addictive? You bet! I use sitemeter and I have to admit that checking it is the first thing I do in the morning and the last thing at night – and who knows how many times in between. Love the sounds of these though if I start paying attention to more of these I’ll never get any work done!
    .-= Liz Bolton´s last blog ..Medford Mass Real Estate Activity – February 2010 =-.

    • TheSpotter says:

      Liz, I hear you :-) I think you only do what most other bloggers do as well. That is why I recommend to use only what is most relevant to you.

  7. Andres says:

    I’ve been using awstats n my Hostgator account for a couple of years now and Statcounter for some other blogs and I can’t say anything but great things about both. I’ll have to try this combo out when I get a chance.
    .-= Andres´s last blog ..Let Your Interpersonal Skills Shine Through a CVS Job Application =-.

    • TheSpotter says:

      awstats is a great package but doesn’t really provide the details many time you need to have good understanding of how your readers interact with your blog and as such – provide more of what people want.

  8. Thanks for mentioning Lijit!

  9. Grace Boyle says:

    Thanks for including Lijit on your list of 5 stats tracking plugins for WordPress!

    This is a great list you have compiled and I completely agree with you that our: Last Searches Performed on My Blog and Last Searches That Returned No Results really highlight reader intent and help you come up with new blogging content.

    Personally, I love to compare Google Analytics to Lijit stats because they both offer something different. We continually hear from users that their Lijit stats offer more of a visual aid (graphs, pictures, etc.) with a simplistic view of focusing statistics on search.

    If you or any of your readers have any questions, please feel free to reach out to me directly. I’m grace at lijit dot com. Cheers!
    .-= Grace Boyle´s last blog ..So much to celebrate in March…and all in one week? =-.

    • TheSpotter says:

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment Grace!

      I like my Lijit :-) and been sharing it with my readers. Hopefully others will see its benefits as well.

  10. Sriraj says:

    I use WordPress stats and also Google Analytics. I know that WP Stats is pretty lame, but the only reason why I use it is because I can quickly have a look at current numbers every time I login into WordPress. Not great, but satisfied.

  11. Mark Krsuch says:

    Hey Alex,
    Thanks for the post. You are so right about being careful with wasting too much time analyzing stats though – lol.
    I’ve been using StatPress on a couple of my blogs as well as kStats. StatPress is more detailed with its reporting and kstats is more brief. I like them both.
    I also run Google’s analytics on the blogs as well – you can never have enough stats! ;-)
    Cheers,
    Mark
    .-= Mark Krsuch´s last blog ..The Freshwater Killer Whale Catfish Is Finally Seen =-.

  12. Robert says:

    I currently use Google Analytics which is fairly comprehensive but you just convinced me to take Lijit for a test drive. Why do I have the feeling I’ll be spending a lot more time analyzing than being productive? ;-)

    Once again, thank you for the excellent resources!
    .-= Robert´s last blog ..Sound Advice For The “Newbie” Affiliate Marketer =-.

  13. Garth says:

    Good timing. I was just lamenting the fact that AWStats gives me detailed info on my html/php sites, but nothing more than the number of visits to my blog (haven’t gotten through your Google Analytics module yet). I’m getting quite a bit of traffic, even though I haven’t really promoted the blog as it is my first one, for experimental purposes really, but I would like to know what search terms people are finding me with, because apparently they are coming from somewhere! So the wordpress.com stats is all I need for now – – just installed it!
    Thanks for the timely tip!
    .-= Garth´s last blog ..5 Secrets Couples Should Know For A Long And Healthy Marriage =-.

  14. Kenney says:

    Thanx Alex…I like the sounds of wp stats & lijit…do you suggest running them together or only one or the other…I really appreciate your blog…Kenney
    http://my-you-tube.com
    .-= Kenney´s last blog ..Matter of Perspective =-.

  15. Dennis Edell says:

    I’m unique. Up to this point I’ve rarely, very rarely checked stats. I’ve always used statcounter.com when I did though.

    I will surely be checking out some of these plugins though. :)
    .-= Dennis Edell´s last blog ..UPDATED: Theme Customization Part 3 – Banner Advertising NOT for Sale! =-.

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