6 Personas that Google Analytics can't Track | White.net

6 Personas that Google Analytics can't Track

By Richard Fergie / February 4, 2010

This blog post is a bit of fun that might give you some idea of the sorts of  thing that cannot be tracked by your web analytics system…

1. Odysseus Off-Site

Image from Litmuse on Flickr

This intrepid traveller ranges far and wide across the internet but has so far resisted the siren call of your site. People like this are very interesting for online marketers especially if they represent your target demographic but you will not find out anything about them from your onsite analytics. Service like Hitwise or Google Ad Planner can give you information about where on the internet Odysseus is hanging out.
2. Henry In-a-Hurry

Image from boeke on Flickr

Henry decides very quickly if he wants to continue looking at a web page. If your analytics code hasn’t loaded by the time he clicks a link or presses the back button then his pageview will not be recorded. The new Google Analytics Asynchronous code will improve tracking of Henry In-a-Hurry.
3. Nadia No-Script

From notionscapital on Flickr. Also WTF?

For whatever reason Nadia browses the web without javascript. This could be for many reasons; paranoia, browser security settings, browser default settings or browser age. Nadia may be a competing SEO trying to view the web as Googlebot sees it or a geek browsing using only the command line.
4. Christopher Cookie-Eater

Image from zoetnet on flickr

Who stole the cookies from the cookie jar? Christopher just can’t bear to leave all those cookies just sitting on his hard drive so he eats/deletes them at the end of every browsing session. Chris will be tracked but he will seen as a new visitor even if he visits your site everyday.

5. Deborah Disabled-Cookies

Image from cmaccubbin on flickr

Unlike Christopher, Deborah doesn’t eat cookies at all. In fact, she won’t allow them anywhere near her browser. Some javascript based analytics systems will track Deb’s pageviews but there will be no persistance so every pageview will be seen as the start of a new visit. Google Analytics will not track Deborah at all (probably to prevent your own site appearing in your referrer stats).
6. Thomas Tin-Foil-Hat

Image by jeffhall2069 on flickr

Tom does not like the idea of you having any information about what he does online. He probably has javascripts and cookies disabled but what distinguishes him from Nadia and Deborah is that he has explicitally told his computer to never communicate with Google Analytics. This can be done by editing the hosts file. Thomas may also use a variety of (secure) proxies or Tor so his visits can not even be tracked in your server logs.

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