Web Analytics Course:
Don't Sell My Soul to Google!

Interacting with Google, the dominant Internet company, has some pitfalls. Learn why you should avoid using Google Analytics on your website.

When you use tools like Google Analytics, you are surrendering your users' data to the tech giant. What does this mean exactly? It means it could help your competitors make better adverts. Google has the ability to use this data to help your competitors be more effective. Big companies can use this data to optimize and outspend you, putting smaller companies out of business.

Let's say someone is considering buying a cooking course. Google could then take this knowledge and push them to a cheaper option such as a $9.99 “Cooking Made Easy” ebook on Amazon, directly undercutting the initial product which inspired culinary endeavors in the first place.

Or perhaps they are looking for information on a breaking news story. Which websites get pushed to them? How about in the Google news pop-ups? The next day? The next week? Even if the person originally found your website due to an intriguing article, they may be shown more articles on the same topic… from different websites. Google develops profiles on people categorizing their interests - whether it's sports or astrology - and directs them accordingly.

Even product retailers have reason to be concerned.

Look at the effectiveness of Google shopping ads compared to regular text.

Chart illustrating the extent to which Google Shopping ads have become the most popular ad format for retail advertisers

Google Shopping ads drive 76.4% of retail search ad spend, generating 85.3% of all clicks on Adwords or Google Shopping campaign ads.

What this amounts to is an enormous level of control - the tech giant can pick winners and losers, kings and serfs. Someone may click on a catchy Instagram ad for unique summer sandals… and then be shown a cheaper knock-off alternative. Likely with faster shipping.

The more data Google has on your website visitors' shopping tastes, the more opportunity there is for the company to use it for its own gains - such as consolidating retail power into select monopolies. Who thought shoe shopping could be so scary?!

Don't allow Google to win this game. Don't sell your soul - or data - to Google!