Why We Use Fathom Analytics for Ethical, Privacy-First Data

In the summer of 2021, I switched from Google Analytics to Fathom Analytics, and it was an absolute game changer! Here’s why I made the switch and why I think you should probably switch to Fathom as well.

Just as a disclaimer, I’m providing links to Fathom in this article that include my own referral code. That means that I get rewarded when you sign up, and you get a $10 discount on your first invoice. If you’d rather not go through my referral link, you can always sign up with Fathom directly right here. But why would you? 🙂

Website analytics matter

Most of the websites you visit every day are tracking your data. It’s important for website owners to know how people use their sites.

  • How many people visit your site?
  • What websites lead people to your site?
  • How long do people stay on your site?
  • Do your site visitors browse around or leave right away?
  • Are people clicking the buttons and links you want them to click?

These are legitimate questions, and any website analytics software should be able to give you the answers to those questions.

Google Analytics is a powerful monster

Over 86% of the sites on the Internet use Google Analytics to track that data. And to be fair, Google is really good at it! They’ve built their entire business on data collection and analysis, so it’s definitely a powerful tool.

But Google Analytics isn’t powerful in the superhero kind of way. No, it’s powerful in the city-destroying King Kong kind of way. If you want to know more about why I think Google is problematic, check out this article I wrote explaining those details.

Go ahead…I’ll wait.

King Kong poster
Attribution: Unknown author, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

Fathom Analytics brings power without sacrificing privacy

I’m a big proponent of data privacy. Our humanity is literally on the line here. The more we give away our personal data to the Facebooks and Googles (and yes, Apples!) of the world, the more we subject ourselves to social manipulation, and the more we become merely products to be sold to advertisers.

That’s where Fathom Analytics comes in. Fathom is an ethical, privacy-centered analytics software that gives website owners the data they need without compromising user privacy.

Fathom is GDPR, CCPA, ePrivacy, PECR (and more) compliant. That means that Fathom Analytics complies fully with the major privacy laws in the US and the EU. Google doesn’t. In fact, Google was found to be illegal by an Austrian court because of how it handles user data internationally.

Fathom Analytics, on the other hand, eliminates the need for annoying cookie popups, and it simplifies your privacy policy needs as well.

Still need some convincing? Here are some of the big reasons I think any website owner would benefit from using Fathom Analytics:

Privacy matters for you and your site visitors

When website owners use Fathom Analytics, they are safeguarding the privacy of every visitor that comes to their site without sacrificing the analytics data they need. Using Google’s analytics software allows Google to track, store, and sell all sorts of data about the people who use your site. If you value a society where our data belongs to us, not to trillion-dollar tech companies, then you will love Fathom Analytics!

You see, Google adds a small file to your computer when you visit a site with their analytics software installed. This file, called a cookie, allows Google to track you not just on that site but across any other site where their analytics software is being used! That’s how Google is able to gather so much data about you and then sell that data to advertisers. In 2020, Google amassed a staggering $123.8 billion dollars in website ad revenues alone.

With Fathom Analytics, there’s no need for a tracking cookie. No need to follow your site visitors across the web. And absolutely no collecting and selling data about you or your site visitors. Ever.

And because you don’t use that tracking cookie, you can say goodbye to the annoying cookie consent banners that you see popping up on sites across the web.

While Google is an advertising company, Fathom is a software company. They make their money by selling their analytics software, not by selling your personal browsing habits.

Read more about Fathom’s privacy-focused analytics here.

Improve your site speed and SEO

Okay, this can get a bit nerdy, but it’s not super complicated. When a website loads, it has to load the script to run the tracking software. The bigger that script, the longer it takes to load. On average, Fathom’s analytics script is merely 3% the size of Google’s tracking script!

Couple the small file size with the fact that Fathom loads from the global CDN network and you get a significant boost in site loading speed. That increases your site’s favorability to search engines meaning you’re more likely to rank higher in search results. Plus, your site visitors get a faster loading site, and who doesn’t love speed?

Read more about Fathom’s speed here.

Get tracking data even from people who use blockers

People are wary of Google’s habit of tracking them across the web. That’s why ad blockers exist. An increasing number of people are using ad blockers to keep Google from spying on them. Good for them!

But that also means that you’re not getting any analytics data on those visitors. Fathom corrects this without violating anyone’s privacy. Fathom uses custom servers to bypass ad blockers and get the analytics data you need all while protecting the privacy of your visitors and never collecting and selling their data.

Read more about how Fathom anonymizes data here.

Simple analytics with features galore!

If you’ve ever used Google Analytics, you know that it can be overwhelming. There are entire businesses built on simply managing and interpreting that data. Is that really necessary?

Fathom Analytics is incredibly simple without losing the feature you need (and some you didn’t even know you needed). Have all the important stats at your fingertips, and get them sent to you in an email if you want. Plus, Fathom Analytics monitors your site and lets you know immediately if your site is ever down. You can even share your analytics dashboard with someone (like me, your website manager).

Read more about Fathom’s simplicity here.

Take a look at Fathom Analytics in action

You really need to see it for yourself. This link will take you to a public dashboard for a sample website with Fathom installed. Take a look around. Click on things. I’ll bet most of it will make sense without any explanation at all.

Ready to get started?

Sign up for a Fathom account here. You’ll get a $10 discount and 7 days free to try it out. Once you’re in, if you’re a Doebank Designs client, you can share your dashboard with me if you’d like.

So go ahead and join me and all the other business owners, entrepreneurs, and even Fortune 500 companies who value privacy. Sign up with Fathom today and kick Google to the curb.