10 Ways Matomo is Better Than Google Analytics
In recent years more and more people are less and less fond of Google. Not only does Google monopolize many industries it also mostly makes money by tracking people and selling their private data to advertisers.
One of the markets Google dominates is that of website analytics. Google Analytics – a software called Urchin originally – is one of the main culprits.
Privacy advocates and website owners who don’t want to stalk their users and give away private data of their visitors to one of the most infamous big data corporations look for alternatives.
Why Matomo Beats Google Analytics Actually
You don’t need to look any further than Matomo for Google Analytics alternatives. Never heard of it? It’s about time! It’s not only about privacy!
Matomo (formerly Piwik) is better than Google Analytics in many ways, at least 10 of them. It’s:
- Free. It’s really free, you don’t pay with your data. Once you use Google Analytics. You only pay for additional services like hosting.
- Open Source. Do I need to say more? No big Google like corporation behind it or small business that could go bankrupt out of the blue.
- Respects privacy. Google Analytics does send your data to the US where at least 40 different secret government agencies can access it.
- Easy to use. Once installed Matomo is a breeze. GA is way too complex by now. You have to click several times to find some crucial reports.
- Simple goal tracking. The way Matomo organizes goal tracking is easy to grasp and implement compared to GA.
- Customizable. While GA is also customizable you can make your Matomo dashboard show anything and everything you want.
- Self hosted. You control your data and they stay in the same country you’re in and nobody else can view them, not even Google employees.
- Tracks Google Image Search. While GA didn’t properly track Google Image search traffic for years Matomo does with ease.
- Full referrers. You have to perform bizarre workarounds to see the actual links people use to visit your site in GA. Once you have them you have to click several times just to see them. Matomo simply shows them after one click.
- Accurate. While Google Analytics data often relies on estimates for large sites Matomo counts visitors one by one as they visit.
Did I overlook something? I bet Matomo has even more advantages. I’ve been using Matomo for a while by now but may have overlooked some advantages. Add them in the comments.
I also have to admit that Google Analytics has some advantages over Matomo. I’d miss advanced segments for instance.
I won’t quit GA because clients use it. For my websites I already got rid of it. You’re not convinced yet? You may switch in the future. Matomo gets developed fast. They have a large and active developer community.
More Google Analytics Alternatives I Tested
In case you’re not able or allowed to run a self-hosted tool like Matomo they also offered hosted alternatives by now. There are more GA alternatives like
and other entry level paid web analytics tools have to look out. I used all of them but I basically stopped after I started using Matomo. Some of the analytics tools also track you like Google Analytics.
Do you like for a very simple privacy focused Web statistics tool you can just plug in int WordPress? Then Koko is your friend. I installed it on top of Matomo on the blog here and use both f them now.
never used this but i am sure i will. the point that inspired me the most was “open source”.
10 Ways Piwik is Better Than Google Analytics…
Piwik is is better than Google Analytics in many ways, at least 10 of them. The article enticed me to look into Piwiki. Their site makes it look even more enticing. I’m really considering installi……
So out of curiosity, it it’s 10x better than GA, why are you still using GA?
I’m not saying to be an ass. I’m asking because based off what i’ve read here, i’m considering installing and moving to Piwik…
Moosa: Yeah, it was one of my main motives as well. Open source software beats dependency on a strictly commercial proprietary vendor.
Chris: Good question but as mentioned in the article itself at the bottom I’d miss some features of GA like advanced segments.
Also most clients use GA already so I have to use it as well.
Last but not least I got used to it so I stay with it out of habit. It’s like giving up smoking, you know it’s bad but you don’t.
Also I didn’t say “10 times better”, I just cited the ten advantages Piwik has over GA.
You have mentioned that Piwik respects privacy? How do you know that? Are you working with them? Or have you done a research about that?
Yeah I hear you. I suppose I was misrepresenting by saying 10x better. I love the fact that it’s self hosted. I think I have to try it out now. Thanks for sharing the find!
I downloaded a beta version of Piwik a few months ago and haven’t as yet gotten down to setting it up on some of the websites I manage.
I have read several blog posts saying that it is a really simple and easy to use open-source alternative to GA and I think your blog post has now given me a proverbial “kick in the butt” to get it installed on one of my domains to check it out.
The one thing I dislike about GA is the delay in data displayed, so if Piwik is “almost real time” that is definitely a great feature all on its own, and one I’ve gotten used to while using a GA client for my Android smartphone.
I’m not sure I’m gonna drop GA but I’ll definitely give Piwik a really good test drive.
Thanks for highlighting Piwik’s benefits and features.
You’ve hit the nail on the head in the reply Tad.
“Also most clients use GA already so I have to use it as well.”
No matter how good Piwik is, you’ve got to see what your clients are seeing. And unfortunately, that could stop it becoming as popular as you’ve said that it deserves to be.
I use Google Analytics regularly but I am always amazed by how unfriendly it is to the user. Based on this post, I’ll give Piwik a try, but I think for the time being Google Analytics will remain the standard. Hopefully these open source reporting systems will at least make Google realise that they need to improve their own tool.
Chris, Pedro, Gemma: Tell me what you think once you tried Piwik.
Andy: I’m afraid you are right.
Just found you through SERPD and found this interesting as I have written about PIWIK before.
When I first installed PIWIK, I loved it. Everything about PIWIK was great. After giving it a few months I realized that the only great thing about PIWIK was instantaneous data.
I even posted a review of why I thought Google had better analytics solution than PIWIK.
PIWIK is missing some really basic stuff like filtering reports on a custom date range and many more.
Even though Google analytics uses and owns your data they provide a great piece of software that nothing else comes close to at that price.
I’ll give it a try for sure. I am tired of Google being everywhere & especially sharing my info.
Lot discussed. Interesting!!! Never used this. Definitely have a try then only I can be in discussion.
good points are made in this post that very well describe the value of piwik in comparison with google.
We release Google2Piwik which allow exporting Google data to Piwik. And now it’s easier then ever swap to Piwik.
The thing that gets me to use Piwik is that it is real time. Waiting a whole day for Google Analytics doesn’t work with me.
Very well narrated and open source is mind blowing. Definitely look forward to overtake the backlog.
I’ve been thinking about making the switch over to Piwik, your post has convinced me that the time is now. The real time tracking alone, is reason enough to switch.
I’ve always used Google Analytics and have been pretty happy with it. But maybe I’ll investigate Piwik.
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Great post on this tool, its really changed the way I look at GA and using the data once I actually have it in hand and not hiding in Google somewhere.
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Piwik is a really good open source analytics program. They need to promote it more.
In my opinion Google Analytics is still the best option for SEOs.
I’ve always used Google Analytics.Now I’m thinking to use piwik to know how it is.
You forgot to say about the
keyword “(not provided)” that’s becoming very annoying. Almost all my website have (not provided) as the top keyword… what’s that all about? GA sucks!
Johnson: (not provided) can’t get fixed by Piwik as it’s not just a Google Analytics issue but a Google search issue. Google blocks referrer data right in the search results.
Thanks for this useful information. Never heard about Piwik but would love to try it in next few days. I hope its better than Google analytics