Want the best Google Analytics tool and free plugins for your WordPress site? Using Google Analytics helps you track your site visitors and get detailed information about them. So you can make better business decisions for your audience and business. In this article, we’ll compare the best Google Analytics plugins for WordPress and help you to choose the best one for your needs.
Free WordPress Google Analytics Plugins
Site Kit by Google
Site Kit is a newly-launched official plugin from Google. It helps you connect your WordPress site to six different Google services and bring data from those services into your WordPress dashboard. The other services are Google Search Console, AdSense, PageSpeed Insights, Google Optimize, and Google Tag Manager. Site Kit does not offer as detailed a feature list as MonsterInsights or ExactMetrics, but it does help you with two things: It helps you add the Google Analytics tracking code to your WordPress site. You can view basic stats for your entire site and specific pages from inside your WordPress dashboard.
To set your site up with Site Kit, you’ll need to go through a few authorization steps. The setup process doesn’t require any code, but you will need to click a bunch of buttons. Then, you’ll be able to view the stats from your WordPress dashboard. If you go to Site Kit. Dashboard or Site Kit. Analytics, you can view high-level stats for your entire site, like: Traffic overview. Your top-performing content
One neat thing here is that Site Kit also includes search query terms from Search Console in the main dashboard, so you can see how those match up with your most popular content: You can also use the search box to open the stats for specific pages on your site. Again, the plugin includes queries from the Search Console for that specific page, which is really convenient.
ExactMetrics (GADWP) Free WordPress Google Analytics Plugins
Formerly known as Google Analytics Dashboard for WP (GADWP), this plugin was acquired by Awesome Motive in 2018 and rebranded to ExactMetrics. ExactMetrics is the second-most popular Google Analytics plugin at WordPress.org, with its active install count above one million sites. Despite now being under the same umbrella as MonsterInsights, there are still plenty of differences between MonsterInsights and ExactMetrics, which is why it gets its own spot on this list. First, in keeping with its GADWP roots, ExactMetrics is 100% free. Additionally, Syed & Awesome Motive have publicly said they intend to keep it as a 100% free product.
So while MonsterInsights locks some features behind the paid version, you’ll never need to pay for ExactMetrics. From a feature perspective, ExactMetrics offers many of the same features that you get in MonsterInsights (even some which require the paid version of MonsterInsights, which is great if you’re on a budget). For example:
- Enhanced Link Attribution
- Real-time stats
- Affiliate link/file tracking
- Custom event tracking
- See traffic by author
With that being said, I find the MonsterInsights interface to be better designed and easier to use. So if you don’t need access to those advanced features for free, you might be better off with the free version of MonsterInsights instead.
MonsterInsights Free WordPress Google Analytics Plugins
Active on over two million WordPress sites, MonsterInsights is the most popular Google Analytics plugin at WordPress.org. It comes from Syed Balkhi and Awesome Motive, who is probably best known for WPBeginner. Once you set it up, you’ll be able to see stats for your site inside your WordPress dashboard:
With the premium version, MonsterInsights also adds a lot of more advanced tracking like Enhanced Ecommerce tracking to view the stats for your eCommerce store (this is a core Google Analytics feature that I’ll talk about in more depth later on). Link Attribution to see which specific buttons/links get the most clicks. Easy custom events tracking to create your own tracking conditions. Moreover, it has some unique features that help you segment your stats by features in WordPress using custom dimensions. For example:
- Segment logged-in WordPress users vs non-logged in users to see trends.
- See which post types get the most traffic.
- Segment your traffic by the focus keyword in Yoast SEO.
- See how your traffic correlates with your Yoast SEO score. For example, do pages with a higher Yoast SEO score have better metrics?
- See which authors on your site get the most traffic.
If you think that you’ll make use of these sorts of advanced analytics, it might be worth it to pay for the premium version of MonsterInsights. But if you just want something to help you add the tracking code to your site and view basic stats, you can stick with the free version (or pick another plugin).
Analytify Free WordPress Google Analytics Plugins
In addition to helping you add the Google Analytics tracking script to your site, Analytify also lets you browse detailed stats without leaving your WordPress site. You can see comprehensive stats inside your WordPress dashboard. And when you’re browsing on the front-end of your site, you can also see the stats for individual posts and pages. This latter feature is quite nice as it makes it easy to access stats for specific pages without needing to use filters.
While the free version of Analytify at WordPress.org is great for creating a stats dashboard on your WordPress site, I think the most distinguishing features are available in the premium version. First, if you’re running a WooCommerce or Easy Digital Downloads store, the paid version helps you set up Google Analytics Enhanced Ecommerce tracking and view that data inside your dashboard. If you’re not familiar with Enhanced Ecommerce tracking, it basically means that you can see store-specific stats in Google Analytics, like:
- Total revenue and average order value
- How many times people add or remove items from their carts
- Product clicks
- Coupon usage
- Refund tracking
- Individual product performance, like how often a product is purchased or added to shoppers’ carts
You can not only collect that data, but you can also view it all inside your WordPress dashboard. MonsterInsights also lets you set this up, but I’m a fan of Analytify’s eCommerce dashboard. The Pro version also adds real-time stats and lets you send yourself automated email reports.
WP Google Analytics Events
WP Google Analytics Events is not an all-purpose Google Analytics plugin like many of the other plugins on this list. Instead, it’s focused on helping you benefit from one specific Google Analytics feature. Event Tracking. If you’re not familiar with Google Analytics Event Tracking, this feature basically lets you set up your own custom actions that you want to track. For example, you could track how many people:
- Click a specific CTA button.
- Watch an embedded YouTube video.
- View an image.
- Scroll down the page.
Event Tracking lets you do all of that plus a lot more. The downside is that it can be a little complicated to set up, which is what this plugin aims to fix for you. It gives you an easy interface inside your WordPress dashboard from which you can set up Event Tracking. This one is definitely not for everyone. But if you want to be able to track and analyze specific actions in Google Analytics, it’s a great tool.
Finally, we have Analytics Cat, which is by far the simplest plugin on this list. All it does is help you add the Google Analytics tracking script to your site. You copy your tracking ID from the Google Analytics interface, paste it into a box in the plugin, and you’re ready to go.
You can also stop Google Analytics from tracking logged-in users so that you don’t pollute your data. If you want the bells and whistles of something like MonsterInsights, this is not the one for you. But if you just want a really lightweight way to add Google Analytics tracking to WordPress, this is the best plugin that I’ve found.