Cloudflare Announces Free Web Analytics – Even for Non-Customers
Cloudflare announced the release of free web analytics called Cloudflare Web Analytics. The tool is available to absolutely all users, even if they have not subscribed to the company’s paid products.
In this article, we will take a closer look at what new features developers offer webmasters and what the fundamental differences are in collecting analytics between versions.
What Innovations Should Users Expect?
The updated analytics tool from Cloudflare is primarily aimed at preserving the privacy of user actions. The service will not use IP addresses, cookies, or localStorage for reporting. The audience will not need to worry that all their targeted actions will be tracked.
The program is aimed at maintaining the security of the site. All malicious addresses will be tracked using Firewall Analytics.
According to the technical director of Cloudflare, this is the main difference between their product and a similar Google service:
“Our tool was designed for webmasters who care about the comfort and privacy of their users. The fact is that now more and more people are using ad blockers. Therefore, many tools cannot bypass them and count the exact number of users. Cloudflare does not use additional programs that track every human action on the site, which allows you to get more accurate indicators.
Moreover, our tool is extremely easy to use. It has an intuitive interface. We have removed a huge number of functions that are rarely used and left only the most important ones.
These factors make Cloudflare Web Analytics a kind of unique service that has no analogs.“
2. Counting visits without tracking users
Unlike other services that use IP addresses to track this metric, Cloudflare Web Analytics counts a visit as a visit to a site with an HTTP referrer if it does not match the home host.
The number of transitions may not coincide with the indicators of other instruments. We recommend you take this into account when analyzing site traffic.
3. Cloudflare Radar
The tool allows you to track almost any event on the network, internet traffic indicators, and popular domains. The developers introduced improved tracking features to publishers.
1. Radar Domain Insights allows you to explore any domain. The program shows its rating and provides data on potential threats.
It also shows how popular a domain is using a unique ranking formula. For sites with a global audience, there is a special map containing data on which country the resource has the highest traffic.
2. Radar IP Insights allows you to check IP addresses, determine geolocation, and connection speed.
3. Radar Internet Insights will show you trending news and events on the network, track the indicators of Internet traffic by country, which browsers are most often used by users anywhere in the world, and so on. It also provides information on cyber attacks tracked by Cloudflare algorithms.
According to the developers, they will be working on improving the technology for the next months. In the future, they plan to add new filters that will allow you to break down information by country and by category. For example, it can be broken down by business niche and similar industries. Additional time intervals will also be added. This will allow us to obtain more relevant data for analysis.
4. Improved filters for countries, hosts, URL, and other indicators
Cloudflare Web Analytics is a multifunctional service that allows tracking user behavior on the site in real-time and the number of page visits to determine other indicators:
- Attendance by country and traffic source
- Ways to get clicks and conversions
- Used browsers
- Device types
The developers have taken care of a more convenient format for charts showing data for specific time intervals. They can be easily dragged between ranges, grouped together to get more comparative data. This way you can analyze spikes better in traffic to determine the source of additional referrals.
Let’s see what this technology looks like in action:
In the future, the developers plan to implement a function to detect and block bots using a firewall and track conversions. It is not known when the upgrade is planned, but additional functions can significantly improve the analysis of traffic to the site.
Also included in the free version is Web Vitals diagnostics. This is Google’s metric that is predicted to become one of the ranking signals next year. Read more in the article – Core Web Vitals: Google’s New Ranking Factor.
How Does the Updated Cloudflare Collect Analytics Data?
The tool shows edge analytics. According to the developers, it allows you to get the most useful information for analyzing the work of the site.
“Cloudflare Web Analytics is designed for all business niches and projects. It can be used by bloggers, non-profit organizations, amateurs who independently develop and promote their site. Marketers, SEO specialists, and developers will be able to determine the effectiveness of the promotion using a large amount of statistical data.“
Last year, Cloudflare had a minimal set of metrics including the transfer of cached and uncached data, the number of requests that were blocked by the firewall. Now the service offers many more functions that allow you to collect as much relevant information as possible and facilitate the analysis of the site’s performance.
- Even if the HTML code is not loaded, you can still see absolutely all traffic.
- The tool is capable of detecting automated traffic but does not yet block it. You will receive more reliable information for assessing the quality of content and SEO strategy in general.
The program determines the performance of the source server. The new version additionally allows you to see how the site is viewed by users. You can see how much time it took to display the requested page.
How serious will it be for Google Analytics? Only time will tell. Many webmasters may choose Cloudflare as it is designed to protect users’ sensitive data. The tool’s popularity will also depend on how quickly the upgrades happen because one of the most important metrics, conversion tracking, is not yet available.