Early Web servers produced log files. Originally intentioned to track “unusual activity”, webmasters soon figured out that they contain valuable information to analyze your website visitors as well. After decades, the information stored is still same: where your users are coming and what they are doing when visiting your website.
So, it was up to webmasters to develop queries and User Interface to show this information.
Being one of the authors of early search engines and their algorithms around 1996, I had returned to my home country – Estonia and nobody there wasn’t much aware about CIA/NSA project called Google.
It was when returning to UK in 2004, where everybody was exited about them with belief that this will be their most important marketing channel for their eCommerce operations. While some businesses there where using Google ads, most of them where trying to find some freelancers in India who promised them #1 ranking positions in natural search for $30. As Google ranking algorithm on those days was using linking information (their page rank), I assume that they had automated link creation processes to offer such kind of service for such kind of price.
If Google is your GOD and you have your doubts regarding my claim about their CIA/NSA connections, you should check some facts: DARPA was early investor to Google, Google board and management includes several high ranking CIA officers, etc.
In early days of Google their search algorithm allowed easy manipulation of SERPs, so this was their main reason for their success. Like “Facebook Like” buttons on every website made Facebook famous. But as both corporations has grown, their true objective has become more visible as well.
While Facebook has become openly information manipulating (“brainwashing”) service where alternate views are not tolerated, Google has taken more cautious road currently only collecting as much information as they can from any Internet services usage. What they do with that information is still in question, but based on their good connections with US government agencies, I assume that information is collected for them.
That goes back to Google Analytics. When I was consulting UK businesses with my knowledge of search engines, I had recommended to install Google Analytics to their websites as well. To my surprise, there wasn’t much “independent analytics” widgets available anymore and I was sure, that Google is using their analytics information for calculating SERPs. It would have been stupid by programmers not to use website usage information while sending visitors to that site.
Anyway, Google soon went to “personalized search results”, which made any SEO activity useless as you can’t anymore show improved search positions to your customers. So, obviously I had to abandon such kind of service for UK customers while still using Google Analytics service for my site.
But they still collect all your website visitors data from your site to store their servers and will show you what they think you should see. Their User Interface has become so complex that for any small website or blog having only few visitors per day, some simple basic analytics should be more convenient.At least for my needs.
I was happy to discover that some Russian programmers have developed WordPress plugin storing your visitors information on local database and I spent some of my time to develop my site analytics showing me information what I need without using Google services.
Therefore, EU parliament decision is right decision and becomes right moment to avoid US agencies and corporations to rule the world.
There has been never a need to use Google Analytics, it has been just “stupidity” of webmasters.