Almost any Web page has a hit counter, but there’s a lot more data
available than just a big fat number. The really useful tidbits,
though–where your readers are, what OS they’re using, etc.–can be
hard for the average blogger or site owner to find. Woopra ladles
on all kinds of data in a clean, easy-to-understand interface–and
does it for free.
Currently in free beta, Woopra is a Web analytics service with a
desktop. To get to the good stuff, you must sign up for the
your Web site. Unlike many Web analytics services, with Woopra,
it’s the software that does the heavy lifting.
And what heavy stuff it is. You get both real-time and historical
data about your visitors. Woopra tells you where they are, what
browser and OS they’re using, their screen resolution, the
referring pages, and more. Needless to say, these are all hugely
useful for designing a site your readers can understand and enjoy.
You can even look at the data of individuals as they visit your
site. (Although you see individual IP addresses, the visitors are
personally identifiable only if they opt to be).
The downsides to Woopra are few. One is that data from visitors who
readers) doesn’t get collected. The other is that Woopra’s beta has
been very popular, so there can be a waiting list. When I discussed
this with the company, they were aware of the issue and told me of
their plans to step up the number of accounts issued soon–perhaps
even by the time you read this.