Philipp Heuberger

$10 Off Fathom Analytics, But That’s Not All

I don’t know about you, but over the last years I grew more and more tired of Google Analytics, and Google in general. I know, I’m not alone in this. Many people try to get Google out of their lives.

Google Analytics is free, I get it. As a business that’s just starting out, or a blogger who just wrote her first few articles, dropping money on analytics is not among the most important things on your todo list.

But, Google as a company leaves you with a bad taste in your mouth. Their entire business model is collecting questionable amounts of data to sell you ads.

Plain and simple.

And when they have troubles getting to your data, they build free tools to get you to install their code on your website. That way they get what they want after all.

And that’s exactly what Google Analytics is. It’s a tool that, to you, looks like a free piece of software from a generous company. In reality, however, it’s them getting to their precious data and all it took was to release a comprehensive service for “free”.

As we all know, nothing is ever really free. Somebody has to pay for it. One way or the other.

Especially for European businesses Google Analytics and the like are a risk factor.

I live in Berlin, Germany. That makes me an EU citizen. And for us, the risk of getting sued over failing to comply with one of the shitloads of regulations is real.

What do I mean with “risk factor”?

Being compliant with GDPR means you need to give visitors a chance to say no to your cookies. Cookies, unfortunately, are the bread and butter of how Google Analytics tracks your visitors’ behavior. You see the problem here.

And just having a banner saying “by using this website you consent to the use of cookies for everything we do around here” doesn’t cut it any longer.

Your visitors need to be able to say specifically what kind of cookies are acceptable to them, and which aren’t. First when they consent to your analytics cookies, you’re allowed to track their behavior. Not a second earlier.

It’s no joke. Lawyers specialize in finding companies or individuals who are not compliant and straight up sue them. And it doesn’t matter if you’re just starting out or are a medium sized business. They just plow onwards on autopilot. It doesn’t matter who they’re running over.

And here’s where Fathom Analytics is different: they don’t need cookies.

It makes things a lot easier – no GDPR to worry about, no cookie consent, nothing. Just a simple blog without pesky pop-ups.

So for me, having to worry about one thing less is a blessing. Even if that means I have to pay a small fee for it.

Being in business or trying to make a living as a blogger is hard enough as it is. We don’t need another worry in the backs of our heads distracting us from the things that actually move the needle.

But why have analytics anyway, your’e asking.

Analytics IS important. As bloggers we need to know what resonates with our audience.

Maybe you’ve noticed, I’m writing about a couple of different topics: Bootstrapping, Serverless and Frontend/Full-Stack Development. I’m in an exploratory phase where I want to see what articles resonate with you, the reader.

I want to write articles you’d like to read.

And I will only ever know which, by using analytics. It’s about seeing which articles drive the most eyeballs and get the most clicks from sources like Hacker News, Indiehackers, Reddit and Quora.

Why privacy-respecting analytics? Because we care and we know how it feels to be on the receiving end of it.

As a consumer (of products, services or content) I grow increasingly suspicious when a website heavily uses Google Analytics, Google Tag Manager or any of the other big players where privacy is an afterthought. There’s usually only two ways this can go. Either they’re trying to optimize selling like there’s no tomorrow or they’re kind of careless. Both not great in my opinion.

On the flip side, a website that’s running Fathom or Simple Analytics gains my respect. It shows me they care about the people who come to their doorstep.

As a website operator, though, this has got to be the best thing about it:

It gives you warm and fuzzy feelings every time you fire it up.

Yup, it just doesn’t get old. Every time I open my dashboard, I feel good about it. I know that I played my (very) small part in making the web a better place by not handing my readers’ data over to Google.

Instead, I’m supporting two founders who are trying to make an impact: Paul Jarvis and Jack Ellis.

Okay, that’s good and all. But what about features, you ask.

Well, I don’t need to keep a super detailed profile on my readers, so I just don’t. It feels refreshing, to only have the essentials.

Sure, compared to Google Analytics, it’s limited in features, but who uses all those features anyway? I know, I didn’t.

I’m sure most of you used Google Analytics the same ol’ way I used it too.

“How many page views did this URL get?”
“Where do users generally come from?”
“What kind of devices are they using?”

Yeah. No surprises here.

That’s exactly what I get in Fathom Analytics. The good thing? I get all that without having to click through 3 levels of menus. It’s all right there on the dashboard. No menu gymnastics required.

I love that it’s simple and efficient.

My Fathom Analytics Dashboard
Right, I said $10 discount on Fathom Analytics…

Fathom offers a generous referral program. That means you get $10 off when you sign up to Fathom Analytics while I’m getting a 25% commission. It’s what they call a positive-sum game and who doesn’t like those, right?

So, if you’re cool with that, just sign up via this link:

Your $10 coupon will be applied automatically.