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Why are the statistics inaccurate?

 
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TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/24/2013

I've battled with trying to understand the statistics ever since I've come to Wizzley. There is no way that they are even remotely true.

I just posted "Fake People and their Values'. A few seconds after I posted it, it said 19 people had read it. When I clicke don statistics, it said no one had read it. When I click on it now (about three minutes after publication), The diagram indicates that it has no visitors from google, no visitors from wizzley and no visitors from rebelmouse. So where do the 19 people come from? Under the statistics section of the diagram it says, however, that there is one person from each of these areas that have visited.

 

My article, 'How to immigrate to another country' says that it has had 88 people. Under statistics, if I add it up, the total is 31 people. Likewise the diagram (31). Neither the statistics nor the diagram add up to 88 peopole.

 

If I look at my article "America vs the rest of the world,; it indicates that 629 people have visited. If I look at 'traffic sources' under the diagram, the total is a total of 83 people. That is a very far cry from 629 people. 

Can someone plesae explain to me what the real figures are?

 

Thank you.

 

 

 

Online
RupertTaylor
Posts: 108
Message
on 06/24/2013

Put me down as puzzled too.

A few days ago the graph at the top of the stats page emptied and it shows no daily visits at all, while the pie chart often doesn't seem to agree with the page visits in My Pages.

chefkeem
Admin
Posts: 3394
Message
on 06/24/2013

I sent a message to Simon, just in case there's a bug crawling around.

However, if you are seriously interested in your detailed stats you should definitely set up a custom URL in your Google Analytics account.


Achim "Chef Keem" Thiemermann is the co-founder of a pretty cool new platform called...um...er...oh, yeah - Wizzley.com.
Online
TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/24/2013

I already do have Google analytics. 

So are you saying that the statistics here are meaningless?

chefkeem
Admin
Posts: 3394
Message
on 06/24/2013

That's not what I said, Tess.

I don't know if we have a bug. So your best bet for accurate stats is on GA.


Achim "Chef Keem" Thiemermann is the co-founder of a pretty cool new platform called...um...er...oh, yeah - Wizzley.com.
Online
TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/24/2013

Chefkeem, I've just compared what Wizzley says compared to what Google Analytics say.

According to Wizzley, my new article has been read 52 times.

 

According to Google Analytics, it hasn't been read at all, and I've had 16 hits the entire day - none of them for that article.

 

So I don't know which is accurate.

Online
RupertTaylor
Posts: 108
Message
on 06/24/2013

Tess. I'm deeply envious. According to Google Analytics I've had four page views in the last month.

chefkeem
Admin
Posts: 3394
Message
on 06/24/2013

I hope Simon can shed some light on this in the morning.


Achim "Chef Keem" Thiemermann is the co-founder of a pretty cool new platform called...um...er...oh, yeah - Wizzley.com.
pkmcr
Posts: 458
Message
on 06/25/2013

I have just taken a look at my GA reporting for the first time in a while and it is reporting the numbers for the month which on average Wizzley is reporting per day.

So definitely interested to hear what Simon says


Simon
Admin
Posts: 620
Message
on 06/25/2013

Actually, there are two different things to explain:

a) The cake diagram "Traffic sources" only shows visitors that allow transmission of the so-called "Referrer". That's a browser setting and while surfing the web in anonymous mode, no such data is sent to Wizzley. Those  readers count as visitors, but they do not appear in our traffic source, hence the discrepancy between visitor numbers and traffic sources.

Additionally, we show the field "Impressions", which is the number of times a page has been rendered. Whenever the page is loaded by anyone except you, this number is increased.

b) The deviation between Google Analytics and our internal stats is caused by bots, crawler and other non-human visitors. We try to filter out such fake visitors, but that's a rather impossible job, since there are countless bots around and it would be a full time job to keep such filters updated. Google Analytics is specialized on this task - they no nothing else than counting visitors.

We thought about regularly comparing Analytics data with our own stats and introducing some sort of correction factor to get better results on average, however we ran into a problem: A higher percentage of Google visitors leads to more accurate internal stats. In my own account I see about 25-50% more visitors on Wizzley than on Analytics ...

I'll read into this a bit. Maybe there's a better solution out there ...

- Simon


An expert is a man who has made all the mistakes which can be made, in a narrow field.
Niels Bohr (1885-1962)
pkmcr
Posts: 458
Message
on 06/25/2013

Simon many thanks for the information.

I am seeing an absolutely massive difference between GA and Wizzley figures. In GA for the period 23rd May 2013 to 23rd June I am seeing circa 286 visits. Which gut feel tells me is about 5% of what Wizzley is reporting.  That's a heck of a lot of bots!  


Online
TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/25/2013

Simon, that doesn't make sense. If GA were reporting bots and you were not, then the figures in GA would reflect higher traffic than Wizzley, not less.

GA says there is virtually no traffic to Wizzley. According to GA, I only had 16 hits for my entire Wizzley site yesterday, but according to Wizzley, I had 52 hits for just one article. In other words, either Google is missing all the traffic that is coming to Wizzley or Wizzley has somewhat inflated numbers of traffic. 

I dont' understand what you are saying. What do you mean a page has been rendered? Does this mean it had a visitor or not?  The point is that the stats are not clear and that they conflict. Nor do I surf anonymously on the web. What difference does it make whether someone is surfing anonymously or not? A visitor is a visitor. 

The figures given for traffic on 'pages' indicated yesterday that I had 52 visitors for one article. In the first few seconds, it indicated that I had 19 readers. That was absolutely impossible. Google Analytics said that I had 16 readers for the entire site for the day. If Google was including bots and other stuff, then Google figures would be much higher than Wizzley figures, not lower. I'm not saying that Google Analytics doesn't include bots, etc. Perhaps they do, but if they do, then even fewer people than 16 visited my site. In addition, the figures on the statistics page of Wizzley are very different to the figures of number of visitors on the 'pages' where all the articles are listed.

I would like to know whether I can assume that there is no traffic to my Wizzley page or whether there actually is some traffic. If what you're saying about Google Analytics is correct, than I can take it that if I get one hit a day, then it's a lot.

i've also taken a look at Alexa stats. Wizzley is losing traffic steadily - actually, 18% over the past three months. That's not good. 

http://www.alexa.com/siteinfo/wizzley.com

 

 

 

 

Online
TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/25/2013

That doesn't make sense. If GA were reporting bots as well as traffic, then GA would have a higher number of traffic than Wizzley. It's the other way around. In fact, if GA is reporting only 5% of the traffic that Wizzley is, if that 5% included bots, it would mean that there was even less traffic to Wizzley. 

 

It doesn't make sense that if Google Analytics is reporting actual visitors plus bots that the number would be less than Wizzley. In that case, the numbers would be more, not less. 

 

I think the numbers that Wizzley are reporting are hugely inflated, especially as I have constently noticed that as soon as I publish an article, I have numberous hits. That is absolutely and utterly impossible.

Online
RupertTaylor
Posts: 108
Message
on 06/25/2013

Tess.

I too was puzzled by rendered; I always thought it had to do with boiling lard. Perhaps, it's another word the IT world has appropriated to mean something else.

I know I'm in deep trouble understanding any of this when I admit, in public no less, that I don't know what a bot is.

pkmcr
Posts: 458
Message
on 06/25/2013

Some good questions there from Tess.  I have tended to take the Wizzley statistics at face value so far but with such a disparity between GA and Wizzley I do think we need some clarification.

It would also be useful to share thoughts on the overall traffic drop which Tess has highlighted and what has been done and what we can do to address it.


Online
TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/25/2013

Rupert,which is why I said that I didn't understand. Rendering, to me, in computer jargon means something to do with what graphic programs do. I have no idea what it has to do with counting up numbers. That's why I ask. I would like an explanation that I can understand. :)

teddletonmr
Posts: 143
Message
on 06/25/2013

How Important Is Alexa ranking anyway? It is my understanding before page views register with Alexa, the browser appropriate Alexa tool bar must be installed before page views count. Other than stats minded webmasters, who really knows to do that?

Information is power we all know that, counting views that lead to conversions is something I believe we all are curious about. I think we all should keep in mind sample size, Amazon / Alexa and Wizzley stats used collectively help us get a better overall picture of how much and where our website traffic originates, converts etc..

Am I missing something?Foot in Mouth

  Make it a great day in the Wizzley community


Make it a great day, teddletonmr
Digby_Adams
Posts: 698
Message
on 06/25/2013

I just use Google Analytics and don't pay much attention to the Wizzley data. They do the best that they can, but as Simon said, it's a very complex procedure. GA is more than adequate for everything I need.

 

cazort
Posts: 98
Message
on 06/25/2013

I also see a huge discrepancy between my Wizzley-reported stats, and the Google Analytics-reported stats.

I generally trust the GA stats more than the Wizzley ones.

Achim's explanation makes sense to me...and personally, I don't care hugely about the accuracy of on-site stats.  I'd much rather have the setup here (where GA is allowed) than the setup at other sites, like EzineArticles, which has its own in-site stat system and doesn't allow GA, because then I don't know if I have any stats that I can trust.

I've also looked at my own server stats and logs and compared them to GA and I see a similar discrepancy, and I think it's because of bots and crawlers.  I think a lot of bots masquerade as legit browsers--there are some malicious web-crawling bots out there too...ones that are used by hackers, used to scrape email addresses, or copy content for various purposes.

I trust GA to filter these out better.  I think that the Wizzley stats can be good to get the general trend of ebb and flow but aren't accurate to assess views right when an article is published.

I have noticed that in the long-run, they tend to be more accurate though than right after something is published.

 


Alex Zorach, editor of RateTea and co-founder of Why This Way
Online
TessaSchlesinger
Posts: 155
Message
on 06/25/2013

No, one does not have to install the Alexa toolbar in order for Alexa to count traffic. How important are they? I think you might mean how accurate tthey are and if people pay attention to Alexa statistics. Yes, people do pay attention to Alexa statistics - because they're accurate.

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