Analytics without a cookie banner

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Published on Nov 12, 2023 and edited on Apr 16, 2024 by Iron Brands

No one likes cookie banners, but they are everywhere. For visitors, they are annoying clutter that pops up a dozen times a day. For businesses, they are a potential source of compliance issues. And for marketers, they cause a loss of data- because not every visitor accepts cookies.

The good news is: If you use Simple Analytics, you don’t need one. Here is why this is a big advantage for your web analytics.

  1. Accurate data
  2. A good complement to traditional solutions
  3. No compliance headaches
  4. Clean data without bots
  5. Ad Blockers are no big deal
  6. Why we care
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Accurate data

Under EU law and many other national laws, you cannot place cookies without user consent. This is why cookie banners are everywhere: websites using cookie-based web analytics tools need consent to write the cookies in the user’s browser.

But, having to display a browser creates an obvious problem for your web analytics: many visitors do not like being tracked and reject cookies. Because traditional web analytics tools are built around cookies, they cannot account for those visitors. In other words, a large portion of your audience is missing from your data entirely.

Realistically, you will miss about 20-25% of your website visitors. This can have substantial ramifications. For example, without a complete insight into your audience, there's a real risk that your marketing budget could be misallocated.

This is not an issue when using Simple Analytics. Our product does not use cookies or tracking technologies of any kind. So, no cookie banner is needed, and the data includes all visitors.

A good complement to traditional solutions

Most of our clients rely on Simple Analytics for all of their web analytics. But you can also run Simple Analytics and a traditional cookie-based solution like Google Analytics or Adobe Analytics.

Combining Simple Analytics with cookie-based solutions allows you to make up for the loss of data due to the cookie banner.

Running Simple Analytics side by side with another product is really easy: you just need to install our script, and off you go. We have integrations with popular tools such as Google Tag Manager, as well as the option to export your Simple Analytics data in raw and aggregated form.

No compliance headaches

Just having a cookie banner is not enough to comply with the law. The banner must also present choices clearly and link to a clear and exhaustive cookie notice.

Many companies fumble this, and regulators fine some of them as a result. Most companies trust the Content Management Platforms (CMPs) of third parties. But you must still set up the CMP in a compliant way and draft a good cookie notice. In other words, a CMP will not solve compliance issues alone.

Whether you use a CMP or not, cookie banners involve a trade-off between accuracy and compliance. Regulators- especially in Europe- want cookie banners that offer genuine, meaningful choices rather than attempting to manipulate users. This kind of design is the most compliant but leads to high opt-out rates. People do not like being tracked and often reject cookies when offered with a transparent choice.

Not needing a cookie banner to begin with solves the problem entirely. And if you use a cookie-based product such as Google Analytics, Simple Analytics can still help you mitigate the loss of data from your cookie banner.

Clean data without bots

Bots such as search engine crawlers or web scrapers can skew your analytics data by inflating your page views. This is why Simple Analytics ensures the quality of your data by filtering out bot traffic.

Most bots are filtered out by default by Simple Analytics. Additionally, customers can use the advanced robot tracking feature to filter out bot traffic based on the IP addresses of known bots. Simple Analytics also allows you to exclude traffic from your own devices from your web analytics data.

Ad Blockers are no big deal

Ad blockers are a serious issue for traditional web analytics solutions. Missing ad impressions can affect the quality of the data. Additionally, some ad blockers include anti-tracking mechanisms, which can interfere with analytics tools as well. Quite a few adblocker services block the Google Analytics script, meaning that even if your visitor agrees to be tracked, you won’t see this in your data. This causes inaccurate metrics.

Fortunately, ad blockers do not impact our service as much because Simple Analytics does not rely on trackers or ad impressions for its analytics. Additionally, domain blocks from ad blockers are easily bypassed with Simple Analytics’s custom domain feature. Users can redirect traffic to a subdomain and still have their data travel safely via https.

Why we care

We believe in an independent web that is friendly to website visitors. This is why we built a privacy-friendly Google Analytics alternative. We provide you with the website insights you need without collecting personal data or using cookies.

You can use Simple Analytics as your standalone website analytics tool or as an add-on to your current analytics tool to get a complete overview. If this resonates with you, feel free to give it a try.

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