Support » Plugin: Slimstat Analytics » Has broken sites

  • I stuck with this plugin for a long time because in many ways it is awesome. The problem is that there have been a few instances in which some of my client’s website have come down (often the white screen of death) and sometimes after exhaustive troubleshooting I discover that Slimstat was culprit. It got to the point that when a website came down or had weird, but significant problems, one of the first items on my troubleshooting list was to disable and or delete Slimstat. When that resolved the issue often enough, albeit not always, I knew it was time to go. As a freelance webdesigner, I am incredibly busy and I am now actively minimizing recurring time-suck problems in favor of excellent solutions that work out-of-the box consistently well. I switched to Statcounter and I even have clients who like it. I could never show Slimstat analytics to clients, as much as I wanted to, because it was too techy for them. Gotta admit – it’s hard to give this one a low rating.

Viewing 13 replies - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
  • Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    Sorry to see you go. Good luck with Statcounter.

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    For those who wonder about Stat counter, please note that access to basic services is free and advanced services can cost between US$5 and US$119 a month. Slimstat is just… FREE 🙂

    That is very true and I use Slimstat for my own website. The analytics are unmatched, particularly for someone like myself with an affinity for looking at techy stuff. I enjoy seeing all of the stats, details and drill-down capabilities. Almost all of my clients, however, just want to see the basics, especially in an easy-to-understand graphic and Statcounter provides this for my clients for free. It also allows me to create their own account so that they can login and see their easy-to-understand stats anytime they want for free, albeit after a short tutorial by me. I had looked into providing this capability to my clients using Slimstat’s Export to Excel add-on, however, it costs $30 and without a free trial period, I didn’t want to take the time to try to figure out how to export data, manipulate it in a way that my clients could quickly and easily understand AND have that done on an automated basis. I just don’t have to do that with Statcounter. Ultimately, I think Slimstat is perfect for developers. It would be great if you could also provide a simplified output for designers to see – the kind we can show our non-tech clients, which almost all are. Just an unsolicited opinion.

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    Thank you for your opinion, which we really value. Would you be able to provide an example of what a simplified interface might look like? We look at similar tools like Piwik or WP Statistics, and our interface doesn’t look that different from theirs, after all. I’m genuinely curious to understand what a dumbed down interface might look like.

    Yes, I will work on that for you. “Dumbed-down” can be an accurate term but not one I use. Instead, I steadfastly adhere to Steve Jobs’ mantra, “simplify, simplify, simplify.” He was a jerk to many people, but application of his mantra clearly worked. Newspapers do it – they write their copy at the 5th grade level. Why? More people read it and buy it that way. It’s also a major reason why Apple products sell as well as they do. Steve Jobs literally threw prototypes back at his engineers while yelling “simplify” at them (or dumb-it-down, to use your words). Simple works. Simple sells. Yes, there is a place for the beautiful details and stats you provide, which is obvious. As a webdesigner, I cannot use the term “dumbed-down” because my clients are often brilliant in their line of work and in almost every case they express their unsolicited gratification that I took their words and presented it on their website in a way that was more clear and understandable than theirs. Sometimes I have no idea what they are talking about after I ask them what they do in their line of work, so I ask them again to tell me what they do and answer as if they are telling a 5th grade class of students. Only then do I get clarity, which I transfer to the website I make for them. Additionally, while most of my clients are brilliant in their line of work, they also generally are not good with computers and anything related to computers. They have heard the term SEO, but don’t know what it is. At the same time, they don’t want to be good at anything related to computers and websites – they are too busy doing their thing, which is their livelihood. By the way, it is your plugin which showed me a few years ago that my theory about simplicity in a website works. The bounce rate on the websites I design for my clients are generally quite low and also have high rates of conversion. Again, more unsolicited opinions for you.

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    I agree that “dumbed-down” is not the right way to describe what you have in mind 🙂 And thank you for your feedback. With the new engine implemented in version 4, we have now more flexibility than ever to implement simplified layouts and reports that easily and effectively communicate how the website is doing. It’s just a matter of figuring out what those reports should look like 😉 Because so far, comparing their demo site with our interface, I can’t seem to understand how theirs is simpler and more intuitive.

    Ok – I’ll send you some examples of what I envision. Personally, I think the back-end is fine. I like it, but would never show it to my clients. The reports are the key – something we can show our clients that they can quickly and easily understand. I don’t think it would be hard to do (famous last words, I know). You already offer shortcode capability and I think an answer lies in there somewhere, but I could not figure them out. Please understand that I am not a developer, rather, I am a very good and very busy designer. I understand that it is necessary to take the time to learn how things work, but I am at the point now that if something takes too long to learn, I move on to find something else that is easier to learn and implement that also has the desired results.

    I’ll let you know what I have in mind. I have to finish up three projects today.

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    I understand that it is necessary to take the time to learn how things work, but I am at the point now that if something takes too long to learn, I move on to find something else that is easier to learn and implement that also has the desired results.

    This is the trend that our friend Steve started back in 2007. However, our small team doesn’t include a graphic designer, and our limited UX experience comes from the projects we’ve worked on. We’re eager to learn new techniques and UI tricks, and obviously we’ve shaped our tool to meet our needs, to provide the technical information that allows people to gather information about their audience. Look at Google Analytics: many users have told us that they like Slimstat better because it’s much more intuitive and easier to use. But I suppose we can do even better. Thank you again for all this info. In the end all our users will benefit from this, if we can figure out a way to proceed. And it’s good to see that even a two-star review can start a constructive conversation!

    http://support.wp-slimstat.com

    Yes, I am one of those who likes Slimstat better than Google Analytics. I generally only add my websites to GA because “I am supposed to” but also because I have had the hope that they will give us something down the road I can show my clients. I’ll let you know what I envision – gotta get back to work now though.

    Relieved to see you are open to being better. Innovation is important to long-term success. Slimstat CAN EASILY be the best one out there, bar none, for people at all levels. The technology is there. Again – I’ll send you my ideas later.

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    Well, if we were not open to innovation, we wouldn’t have been able to stick around for 9 years 🙂 Slimstat is even older than the iPhone hehe.

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    Any news on this?

    Plugin Author Jason Crouse

    (@coolmann)

    Ok – I’ll send you some examples of what I envision.

    Barkingbird’s Last Famous Words 😉

Viewing 13 replies - 1 through 13 (of 13 total)
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