SC4 and Beyond…!


Folks,

In the last few days we have completed conversion of all StatCounter projects to our new SC4 platform.

Some of the key differences with this update include:

  • Exit Link Stats
  • Download Stats
  • Faster Loading Keyword and Country Stats
  • Improved reliability and redundancy
  • Improved loading speed of StatCounter code
  • Greater technical flexibility to allow for continued system improvements

We want to take this opportunity to thank you for your patience and support during the period of the conversion – it took much longer than we had wanted or expected so we are absolutely delighted that all members now have access to the improved features.

As mentioned above, our new system provides us with lots of flexibility to continue to improve the service we offer… so we are combing through our forum and support system and putting together an action plan of updates and improvements for StatCounter. In addition, we’d be very grateful for your help…

    • Is there a statistic or feature that you would like to see on StatCounter?
    • If there was one thing you could change about StatCounter what would it be?
    • Is there any way that we could make StatCounter easier to use?
    • How could StatCounter be even more useful to you?

If you have a bright idea, then please post it here!

Any and all suggestions will be of great help to us in charting our way forward as we continue to strive to provide you, our members, with the best service we possibly can.

No Referring Link – Explained

Hi folks,

“Came From” Stats

Your StatCounter “Came From” stats provide you with information about how people are coming to your site.
camefrom

In your “Came From” stats you will see a list of sites via which visitors come to your site. These sites which refer visitors to your site might be forums, blogs, search engines, directories or websites of any kind that provide links to your site. You may also see entries for “No Referring Link” – we’ll explain what this means in this post.

Indirect and Direct Visitors

Visitors to your website can arrive in two distinct ways. For example:

A Vistor Can Arrive at your site INDIRECTLY by:

  • Clicking though to your website from a Search Engine
  • Following a link to your site on a blog
  • Clicking a link in a forum where someone recommends your site

OR a Visitor Can Arrive at your site DIRECTLY by:

  • Typing your web address directly into their browser address bar
  • Clicking a bookmarked link to your site in their browser


Indirect Visitors

If a visitor arrives at your site via a search engine, the visitor has been referred to your site by the search engine therefore you will see a referring link from the search engine in your stats.

referring_url

In other words, you will only see a referring link in your stats, if a visitor has been referred to your site by another website, blog, forum or search engine.

Direct Visitors

If a visitor arrives at your site by typing your website address directly into their browser, the visitor has NOT been referred to your site by any other site, therefore you will see a “No Referring Link” entry in your StatCounter stats.

referring_url2

In other words, if a vistor comes to your site directly (i.e. without being referred to your site by any other site), then there is no referring link for that visitor.

No Referring Link – what’s the significance?

There are a number of reasons why you could have a high proportion of “No Referring Link” entries in your stats. For example:

  • People may get to know your web address offline (e.g. in flyers or newspapers) so they simply go directly to your site rather than looking for your site in a search engine.
  • You may have a lot of returning visitors who have bookmarked your site so that they can quickly revisit it.

As usual, comments, questions and suggestions welcome!

UPDATE:
To ensure that all referring links are captured, you should make sure that you have StatCounter code installed on all pages of your site. It is not sufficient to have StatCounter installed on your homepage only. This is because visitors may enter your site at any page not just your homepage.

General News

Hi folks,

Here is a summary of some of the latest news from StatCounter.

Ads – New Networks

Advertising revenue allows us to fund our free service. Increasing our ad revenue allows us to invest in improving the service we offer. With this in mind, we have been running some new ad networks on StatCounter lately.

Further to last month’s blog post, we’d like to take this opportunity to remind you that we strive to ensure that only high quality advertising is shown on our site. However, as different adverts are shown on StatCounter in different parts of the world, here in StatCounter HQ we don’t actually see every advert shown to our members.

We are committed to providing the best service we can to our members so, if you see an inappropriate/intrusive/offensive advert, PLEASE let us know about it. With your help, we can ensure a better experience for all our members. We require the following information to identify and remove any nuisance ads:

  • Ad position – top or side
  • URL where ad is being seen
  • Geo location where ad was seen
  • Click url of ad

If possible please also take a screenshot of the ad. Although our support system does not allow attachments for security reasons, we will contact you directly to retrieve the image from you.

SC4 Update
sc41We know, we know… SC4 has been a long time coming but it IS coming!

When we began the beta phase of SC4, we asked for volunteers to test the service. When testing proved successful and various bugs were ironed out, we were faced with a dilemma… we had our new platform available and we had two options:

  1. We could keep the new system under wraps until we were ready to convert all the existing StatCounter projects to SC4 OR
  2. We could set all NEW projects created to SC4 immediately thus allowing new and existing members to benefit from the new features while we continued to work on the conversion

We chose to implement option 2 above. Although this means that we have been running two platforms side by side for over a year now, we do believe that this was the correct course of action to take as it allowed as many people as possible to gain the benefits of the new system.

Significant investments have been made in server technology and in strengthening our team and we are working flat out to make this new platform available to everyone.

Rather than risk problems or outages we have just had to take our time on this. Conversion to our new platform has taken much longer than we anticipated and for this we offer you our sincere apologies. We cannot wait to convert all projects to SC4 and we are so grateful to you for your patience as we continue work to achieve this.

PR Award

Earlier this year we launched StatCounter Global Statssimpson-logo21this free service provides market share stats for browsers, operating systems and search engines (including mobile). Within 2 weeks of launch, we were thrilled to achieve over 100,000 hits from over 100 countries.

Instrumental to the launch were the advice and assistance of our PR agent, Simpson FT PR. For this reason, we were delighted to hear that Ronnie Simpson and his team won the 2009 New Media PR Excellence Award for their work on the campaign. Well done all!

SC4 Update 2!

Hi all,

We want to thank you all SO much for your patience with the SC4 conversion! Believe us, we are working hard to get the conversion done asap – we are as excited about the new improvements as so many of YOU are and we just can’t wait to roll them out to all our members.

The Wait Won’t be THIS Long – We Promise!

The position at the moment is that 5 of the 47 StatCounter partitions are fully operational under the new SC4 system.

We have also narrowed the co-location providers down to a shortlist of four. We are now currently working to negotiate the final deal.

Some of the issues we are considering at the moment include:

  • Location – is California just too vulnerable to earthquakes to locate some of our hosting there? Is Ohio a safer destination from a natural disaster point of view?
  • Servers – shall we go with Dell, HP or Supermicro servers? Which servers are the best? Which allow the best remote management? Which have the least power comsumption?
  • Backup – there must be a second datacenter in each geographical location (in addition to globally dispersed backups) – how far from the original datacenter is sufficient for redundancy and how close is sufficient for efficiency?

We’re very lucky to count many talented IT professionals among our members, so if any of you would like to share your thoughts and opinions on the above, we’d love to hear from you. Please post your comments below.

Notes:

  • Once we reach a final deal in relation to our hosting requirements, we will then begin conversion again, initially on a test basis, before full conversion will be completed.
  • Don’t forget that all NEW StatCounter projects created are automatically created on the SC4 system – if you want instant access to some of the new features before your existing projects are converted, you can simply set up a new, temporary project now!
  • Related posts:
    SC4 Conversion
    Conversion Update

Conversion Update!

Hi all,

We’d like to take this opportunity to update you about the conversion to the new SC4 system and also answer some queries that have arisen.

  • Do I need to install new code to use SC4?
    No! All existing StatCounter projects will be converted to SC4 so that all members will be able to enjoy the new features available.
  • I installed the beta code – what do I do about this?
    When your standard StatCounter code is converted to SC4, you can simply delete the old beta code on your site. This is because your standard StatCounter code will start to collect all the new stats previously only available with the beta code.
  • Why can’t I see download stats or exit links in my stats yet?
    Only one of our 40+ partitions has yet been converted to the new SC4 system. Once your partition is converted, then you will be able to enjoy the new stats!
  • What partitions have been converted so far?
    Partition 3 (c4) is the only partition to have been fully converted as at July 11, 2008. Updates about conversion of further partitions will be posted in the Service Status area of our forum.
  • But I want to see download stats/exit links NOW!!
    If you want to start tracking downloads or exit links immediately, then you could consider setting up a new project and adding a second lot of StatCounter code to your site. All new projects generated are automatically created on the new SC4 system. When your standard StatCounter code is converted to the new system, you can then simply delete the temporary code you added.
  • Why is conversion taking so long?!
    Converting a full partition takes approximately one week due to the volume of historical data which has to be processed. Conversion of the first partition took extra time as we had to tread carefully and heavily monitor the conversion to make sure that nothing untoward or unexpected happened.
    We are now in talks with a number of data centers in order to locate the best equipment, service level agreements and prices – continued conversion is postponed until we reach agreements with some of these third parties.
  • Is there anything that StatCounter members can do to help?
    We are already so grateful for the help we receive from so many of our members – your unfailing encouragement and support are invaluable. In addition though, if anyone can recommend and provide contact details for colocation or datacenters, we’d be delighted if you could post the information below!