No one on the Internet trusts you to count the page views for your own website. So if you have even a mere whisp of a daydream about earning advertising revenue from your site, then you have to get Google Analytics. Essentially, this service gives you a piece of code that you can attach to your website that functions like a goblin with an abacus. Only the goblin not only tallies your page views, she does statistics too.
And what I never knew was that Google gives away these goblins for free.
I guess I just never thought Google would provide such a valuable service without a subscription or a fee. In my mind, the economy of the Internet is data-driven and giving it away for free is just mad. Mad I say!
Google does it though. I suspect their motivation lies primarily in knowledge collection. If you sign up for their service, you’re agreeing to share your data with them, and even though you can opt out of sharing that data with third parties, that doesn’t mean Google can’t solicit you once your website starts pulling in a certain number of visitors.
So some day, when this website has a decent amount of traffic, I imagine that some notes will start popping up in my gmail, pointing out that I might just be an excellent candidate for Google AdWords, or any of their other advertising ventures. Or maybe that isn’t how Google rolls. I don’t know yet because I just installed the goblin yesterday.
Whether I would add advertising to this site, I don’t know. That’s the kind of axe I’ll grind when I need too.
Oh, and if you’re contemplating how a goblin can do statistics with abacus–she doesn’t. She does the stats in her head.