Two great free webstat programs

Time to give some recognition to the kind folks at WordPress; they’re always working tirelessly to keep everything running smoothly for their bloggers. Great job, guys. 🙂

I’ve been very impressed with WordPress since I signed up a year ago. I’ve had experience with webhosting before (I still host www.sci-fimonthly.com), but really it’s been more of a hassle than I want to bother with; between creating designs, constantly changing content and the monthly fees, it’s very frustrating. When I was looking to create this blog, I wanted to find something free but powerful to solve a lot of those problems. And WordPress was it.

Now it’s completely exceeded my expectations. I set up CJWriter as a blog, but it’s really become more of a website in its own right. I host my stories here, get to talk about writing and other issues – and even more importantly, comments allow me to interact with readers in a way I never could before. I could have done this on my own, yes, but WordPress makes it so simple that there’s no need to.

There are only a couple of things I wish I could have. One is a custom favicon, something a lot of WP users having been asking for… a few people have said it might happen in the future (so send feedback!). Another is a paid upgrade to ensure that readers don’t see ads. I have no problem with WordPress running ads (that’s how they can focus on their free features), and they only appear rarely to people who aren’t logged in. But a lot of my readers come off Google and aren’t logged in, so I would be willing to pay for an upgrade to ensure that ads aren’t run on CJWriter… just a personal taste decision (so far I’ve never seen an ad myself), but hopefully that upgrade is in the works.

In the meantime, if anybody doesn’t know about them, I thought I’d draw attention to two great free webstat programs. WordPress has it’s own stats, but they’re not quite as detailed as some people might like. If you install either of these (or both!), they’ll act to complement WordPress’s stats and between the two you’ll get quite a comprehensive breakdown of visitors. You’ll need the HTML code for both programs, rather than the javascript code, which means you won’t get all the features… which is why they work well with WordPress’s stats. To install, just insert the line of HTML in a text widget.

Statcounter
Statcounter is my personal favourite stats program. I’ve been using it for years and it’s completely free; you can keep track of up to 250,000 pageloads and you get a considerable breakdown, from pageloads to country, browser stats, etc. It also has an invisible option.

HiStats
HiStats is a relatively new stats program. It has quite similar features to Statcounter, but it’s graphical layout is very different. It has a great look and if you like interpreting stats through a quick glance, check it out.

2 thoughts on “Two great free webstat programs

  1. Your Sc Fi Monthly site has always tempted me–popping by for beer and peanuts, hash out the latest books to be discussed. But…why waste time on someone like Kevin J. Anderson? This guy put the “ack” into “hack”. D’you know he wanders around with a tape recorder, reading whole chunks of narrative into it, banging a novel out later and then zipping the mish-mash off to his publisher? You can’t be as prolific as he is (Modesitt is another guilty party) without sacrificing writing quality. Writers like this don’t have the slightest consideration for their readers or the legacy of fine scribes. They’re part of the reason why mainstream and literary critics don’t take sci fi seriously. They are mercenary talents who should have their thumbs cut off as a deterrent to others.

  2. Hi Chris!

    Just popping over to say hello after seeing your comment on my blog, thanks very much for that! Apparently, there is so much to see in the US, that I’m going to be hard-pressed for timing, but since there is another year to wait for that particular trip, I’ll work something out!

    I agree with you on WordPress – it is a great outlet for writing, and it is very easy to play around with. I recently transferred from Typepad. I must say, having a favicon and the ability to manipulate themes is the reason I ended up going to an external host, but the basic functions of WordPress are still what’s important.

    Stat Counter is my, er, stat counter of choice. 😉

    It’s great to meet you, I’ll be stopping by often!

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