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Piwik Web Analytics Essentials

Packed with code and the necessary screenshots, this is a step-by-step comprehensive tutorial which will help you learn about Piwik quickly and easily,This book is for everyone ranging from a reader who is new to web analytics to a seasoned coding expert wanting to switch to Piwik from another analytics tool. If you are a newbie, you will learn to install Piwik, install tracking, and customize the JavaScript for their custom needs, as well as why they need to track their visitors. If you are an advanced reader, you will learn to mix JavaScript with PHP, Flash, and other languages in order to write plugins for custom software.

File Size: 18317 KB

Print Length: 326 pages

Publisher: Packt Publishing (October 5, 2012)

Publication Date: October 5, 2012

Sold by:  Digital Services LLC

Language: English


Text-to-Speech: Enabled

X-Ray: Not Enabled

Word Wise: Not Enabled

Lending: Not Enabled

Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

Best Sellers Rank: #689,506 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store) #54 in Books > Computers & Technology > Web Development & Design > Website Analytics #287 in Books > Computers & Technology > Internet & Social Media > Online Searching #6305 in Books > Computers & Technology > Computer Science

I've long been a Google Analytics user however I was wanting to use an analytics program where I have ownership of my data.I have dabbled with Piwik however I was wanting to delve deeper into its capabilitiesCouple of reasons for not giving it 5 stars ...- there are some inconsistencies in the downloadable code examples.8482_03_code8 is an example of using setCookieDomain and setDomains in Piwik's tracking code. The js code example uses PiwikTracker.setCookieDomain instead of piwikTracker.setCookieDomain, and where this is expanded on further in Chapter8 the code examples both in the book and files uses tracker.setCookieDomain- In instances where more than one modification to the code needs to be made such as subdomain tracking, I would have liked to have seen a final version of the required code with both the setDocumentTitle and setCookieDomain etc shown. Does the setDocumentTitle need to be added before the setCookieDomain or after the setDomains?- I would have liked the kindle version to include say a chapter# on each page or some kind of easy indication as to what folder to find the code example in, as I found I was often having to scroll back to see what chapter I was reading and then having to hunt through the relevant readme file to find the code example I was after.Overall though, this book with it's detailed information and code examples (for the most part) is useful and thorough in the topics it covers. I'm glad I purchased it.

Finally a real book about Piwik, thanks to him Piwik starts to be demystified. Stephan gives us here concrete examples about how to use Piwik and which lines of code we need to insert on our webpages. A really good job. Well done.

Miller does an excellent job covering all technical aspects of Piwik from initial installation, security, backups & maintenance (Chapter 1), using reports and features (Chapter 2), the asynchronous tracking code for pages, events and custom vars (Chapter 3), goals and conversions (Chapter 4), campaigns tracking and attribution (Chapter 5), the concept of events and social tracking (Chapter 6), e-commerce tracking (Chapter 7), administration (Chapter 8), and lastly, advanced tracking topics, debugging and plugins (Chapter 9). Chapter 10 covers integration into other platforms such as CMSs, mobile, accessing the underlying data or using the API.The book is not too technical but is certainly not a marketing or manager oriented one. It is a good technical reference for anyone starting with Piwik. Don't expect the book to help you justify the use of Piwik over other alternatives, nor should you expect to learn "how" to do analytics.While there are still debates about the implications of IT vs Marketing in web analytics, Piwik clearly stands on the IT side and the book clearly reflects that. With requirements for self-hosting, MySQL database handling, installation on servers and such, Piwik is clearly for the technically inclined or organizations that want to bring the technical side of web analytics in-house. The arguments I hear most often to justify a solution such as Piwik are a sense of greater control over the data, customization capabilities and a perception of greater security. I feel those aspects should have been a little better covered in the book.

Piwik is an open-source alternative to Google Analytics (and various other web analytic software). If you prefer your data to remain in your hands and not stored somewhere in the Googleverse, Piwik is the way to go.This book is an excellent introduction to installing, configuring, using and maintaining a Piwik server. Some basic concept of how PHP and MySQL work and interact with one another is helpful, but that kind of goes without saying when dealing with open-source software in general.The text is clear and concise, with a good balance between description and screen shots (I hate when a book consists of mostly screen-shot - it's like padding a term paper with larger fonts and leading).I confess we only use the basic features of Piwik at the moment, but I know that when our account team asks for advanced tracking, campaign tracking, or even e-commerce tracking, I'll be able to quickly configure our installation using this book as reference. It even covers the basics of creating your own back-end widgets and documents the API near the end.All in all, an indispensable reference for anyone who needs to install and maintain a Piwik server.

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