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Leads to Insight

Official blog for the book Advanced Web Metrics with Google Analytics by Brian Clifton

Best Practice Privacy Policy

This website uses Google Analytics to help analyse how visitor use this site. Google Analytics uses "cookies", which are small text files placed on your computer, to collect standard internet log information and visitor behaviour information in an anonymous form. Note the deliberate emphasis of anonymous, as no personally identifiable information is collected about you unless you explicitly submit that information via a fill-in form on this website. So if I need personal info from you - for example your email address to register for Pro Lounge access, or to add a blog comment - I will ask for it and you will have the option to provide it or not.

The anonymous information generated by Google Analytics cookies about your use of this website (including your IP address) is transmitted to Google. This information is then processed to compile statistical reports on website activity for only. I use these reports to evaluate aggregate visitor usage so that I can optimise the content, and its marketing, to better meet your needs. Yes, I consider this essential for me to operate this website as a free to use service!

I will not link, or seek to link, an IP address with the identity of a computer user. In fact, I will not associate any data gathered from this site with any personally identifiable information from any source, unless you explicitly submit that information via a fill-in form. Google will not associate your IP address with any other data held by Google.

In summary, your anonymity is safe. That is my personal commitment to you as a valued reader and potential client. For more information, see my posts about online privacy best practice.

When Personal Information is Submitted

If you have registered for the Pro Lounge, submitted a blog comment or asked to be notified of updates, I request your name and email address and potentially other non-specific demographic information. For example, your language preference, gender and location. I do this firstly to ensure you are not a robot or spammer, and secondly because the more information I have on actual people (as opposed to cookies), the better I can understand what content is of interest to readers. If you wish your personal information to be removed from this site, simply contact me at and I will do this at the earliest opportunity. Note, that in removing your personal details all your associated content is deleted - such as blog comments you have made.

3rd Party Tracking

If you have read my posts in the privacy and accuracy category, you will know my position on 3rd party tracking - essentially I am not a fan i.e. the setting of 3rd-party cookies (quite the contary!). That said, I use AddThis to embed social "love" buttons. If you click on a social love button, most will set a third-party cookie e.g. Twitter, Google +1, Facebook etc. Unfortunately, there is no way around this if you wish to share content socially - social networks use 3rd-party cookies.

My advice is to set your browser to always block 3rd-party cookies. The social buttons will still work, just no visitor data sent to them. Note that I have configured AddThis itself to not track you (using data_use_cookies:false).

Further Information

For further information about how Google Analytics uses cookies and IP address data, see: