I have been (was) keeping track of my blog stats through both Blogger (where first blog was originally hosted) and Google Analytics. Everything was going pretty well, and it was fascinating to see how many visits I had versus the number of pageviews.
I also like knowing how I’m being found through searches, and Blogger’s stats are helpful but very basic. Google Analytics provides much more information in that regard.
So, when Blogger said that I’d achieved record numbers of pageviews (for my blog’s life, not in comparison to other blogs), I was excited and curious to learn what Google Analytics would say.
*Drum Roll*… Nothing.
In fact, while Blogger was teasing me with these increasing pageviews, Google Analytics was telling me no one visited the site.
Not just one day, but multiple days.
That either meant that Google Analytics was somehow failing severely or someone (or some algorithm) at Blogger was cruelly trying to give me false hope.
What went wrong?
Somehow I only just managed to figure this out, with a bit of shamefully obvious detective work. If you look at my front page, or at least the archive, you’ll see that on July 18th, I did a complete overhaul of my layout.
I changed the fonts, I changed the design, I changed the layout… I changed everything except the color scheme.
Maybe I changed that too, I can’t remember.
I was originally using the standard, comes-with-Blogger “Awesome” template. It’s nice, but its design was much different from most other blogs and crunched everything into an itty-bitty portion of the screen.
Since Google Analytics reports that no one comes to my site with an 800×600 screen resolution anymore, that size wasn’t necessary and, in fact, probably looked as tiny to others as it did to me.
I couldn’t revise the “Awesome” template in Template Designer though, so I changed it.
Yup. Are you with me?
It’s quite a discredit to myself to write this, but I know other people had trouble with Blogger’s stats not measuring up the same with stats from other programs, potentially including Google Analytics. I had researched it the other day, frustrated, while forgetting entirely about the change.
I had loaded several features into the header and the post body of the Blogger template for “Awesome”.Not even thinking twice about it, I changed to the template “Simple” so that I could customize it entirely and really make it my own, not to mention stretch it over the page a little more.
It wasn’t immediately obvious because some of the tweaks I’d made to my website were very small.
For example, I’d changed how my Blogger title heading appears in the title bar/in search engine results. After installing the new template, I noticed (but still didn’t think about the Analytics part) that when I tried to submit a page to Digg, it suddenly showed up the default way, with the blog title before the post title.
I’d first realized then that – duh – revising the entire template changes all the HTML code attached to it.
The Google Analytics tracking code had been eliminated from the template, even though (strangely) Google Analytics didn’t show a problem in the status of the tracking.
So if you are thinking about revamping your Blogger blog, and you plan to edit the template (and frankly, even if you don’t), be sure to save your current template first.
Or just watch what template you use to begin with if you intend to use Template Designer.
I could’ve tweaked the “Simple” template and created the same setup as the “Awesome” template and I would’ve never had the tracking lapse when I wanted to change it.
Whatever you do, don’t make the same stupid mistake I did!