The Privacy and Electronic Communications (EC Directive) (Amendment) Regulations 2011 are now being enforced across sites operating within and from the EU. It has been introduced primarily to prevent unauthorised ad tracking due to numerous complaints and browser plugins such as Do Not Track. A move with good intentions, but the extent of the effects on other cookies has been shrouded with very little advice.
On the 2nd of April 2012, the International Chamber of Commerce UK released a full guide to these new regulations, which became law on the 26th May 2011. There are now distinct categories for each cookie, which category the cookie falls into is decided by the nature of them, for example if they’re for security, analytics, settings or ad targeting.
Category 1 is for ‘strictly necessary cookies’. They are usually first-party (originating and solely relating to the site the user is on) and session based (expire when the page is closed). Without these cookies, services that the user has requested to use, such as shopping baskets, cannot be provided.
Category 2 is where GoSquared’s cookies fall into. They are defined as ‘performance cookies‘ and they collect information about how visitors use a website. They are not allowed to actually identify the visitor and are used to improve how the website works.
Category 3 is for functionality. They remember choices that the user makes, such as a username, language or region.
Category 4 cookies are hit hardest by the new law. They are used to deliver adverts based on your browsing history, measure the effectiveess of ad campaigns and limit the number of times you see the same advert.
Why does the category matter? Well, the level of consent required to set the cookie varies between the categories. Category 1 doesn’t require any user consent at all whilst Category 4 requires the user to make an informed choice as to whether they want the cookie before it can be set. In short, it’s not looking good for ad networks.
“This website uses Go Squared Ltd’s web analytics services.
We control how the information collected about you is used. GoSquared will use it on our behalf to evaluate your use of this website and report to us about this website’s operations. GoSquared may provide it to third parties if needs be, for example, in order to comply with the law or to third parties processing that information on behalf of GoSquared. For more information on GoSquared’s practices, please see http://www.gosquared.com/legal/
If you wish to restrict or block cookies you can do this through your browser settings – the Help function within your browser should tell you how. Alternatively, you may wish to visit www.aboutcookies.org which contains comprehensive information on how to do this on a wide variety of browsers. Please be aware that restricting cookies may impact on the functionality of this website.
Website owners, we recommend you check out the ICC guide to assess any other cookies that are on your website.
Internet users may well notice rather annoying consent popups appearing in various locations around. We find the one on the beta UK Government replacement to DirectGov rather amusing. Found an interesting one? Tweet us @GoSquared.
Our Apache web servers got flooded with proxy requests from all over the world, the typical botnet attack that every system administrator loves on a Monday morning. Running on EC2, we could quickly scale to more instances so that our customers would still be able to access our services while we dealt with the attack. AWS’s Security Groups works great for general firewalling, but we needed something lower level for this situation. Because we had multiple EC2 instances running Apache, we needed something that would work the same across all of them.
Since our instances run Ubuntu, we could leverage ufw (Uncomplicated Firewall), an iptables manager, for this task. All requests coming from bots started with “http://”. We could just tail Apache logs, pick all those requests and block that IP. Nice and simple:
The awk script keeps an internal blocked_ips list which ensures that we don’t try adding the same IP address over and over again. Even if ufw won’t re-add an already blocked IP, it’s a costly operation which slows our utility down. The other subtlety would be ufw insert 1 which ensures that all deny rules come at the top, before all allow rules. This is important because if a rule passes, iptables won’t continue evaluating any of the subsequent rules.
Remember to allow your SSH port (usually 22) before starting your firewall, or you will lock yourself out. You will also need to allow all other ports which you’re using, e.g. 80, 443 etc. To see the status of your firewall, run ufw status. I personally prefer the ufw status numbered version.
In just a few hours, we had no less than 1,500 IPs blocked from Russia, the Ivory Coast, France and even US. The attack is far from over, but this was the immediate effect of our shell utility on Apache web traffic:
As a last tip, when you configure Apache proxying, triple-check that ProxyRequests is disabled. In hindsight, we could have avoided this situation altogether had we been more careful with this rule.
Good customer support is vital for any product or service. With over 17,000 sites signed up to GoSquared (and a very small team) we pride ourselves on the high level of quality and response time our customers get when they submit a support request.
In the past we’ve created help sheets for all kinds of things; CSS3, Node.JS, VI, WordPress and many more. Today we’re introducing our help sheet for Superior Support.
Saul Cullen, GoSquared employee Number 1, has been heading up customer support for the past year. In a recent internal hack hour he put together a guide to help the team be truly awesome when speaking to customers who have a support issue. We were so impressed, we decided to make the guide look pretty and release it as part of our help sheet series.
We hope that you find this guide useful and that it helps to make your customer support superior.
Have you ever wondered how GoSquared started? Few of you know that the company actually started 6 years ago, albeit in a very different form.
In February our CEO, James Gill, spoke at Tomorrow’s Web; a meetup in London aimed at inspiring young people do to brilliant things with technology. James told the story of GoSquared and how we started, where we’re going. We thought we’d share that with you today.
Today we’re pleased to introduce Timeline – a dramatically improved way to see how the number of people on your site has varied over the past 48 hours.
We felt Timeline, along with the Traffic widget and Notifications contained 3 of the most important pieces of information you need in real-time, so they’re now the most prominent areas in the GoSquared Dashboard interface.
Glance to the top left of Dashboard and you’ll always have “Traffic” showing the total visitors online number and dial – so you can immediately see how many people are online, and compare this to your 7 day max.
Top centre we have the new “Timeline“, showing you your traffic for the past 24 hours, overlaid on the previous 24 hours before that.
In the top right corner “Notifications” shows you a list of all recent traffic spikes and dips, giving you quick and easy access to in depth snapshot reports about the state of your site at that time.
As with everything in GoSquared, the latest improvement to Dashboard work on all devices, so even if you’re out in the field on your iPhone you can still see everything you need about your site in real-time.
Let us know your thoughts
We hope you’ll love the latest improvements to Dashboard, and we have a lot more in the labs that we just can’t wait to start rolling out to you.
Coupons on Interest is a rather cool service that was developed in under 48 hours at our hackathon, London Real-Time. It allows e-commerce sites to give potential customers a discount on their products, based on the interest of a web page.
Using the GoSquared API, Coupons on Interest checks the concurrent number of visitors to a product page. Once a pre-defined threshold has been reached (for example 50 visitors) the site owner is sent an SMS (using Twilio) prompting them to offer a mass discount code to page viewers. When activated visitors get a push notification in their browser (using Pusher) with discount coupon details.
Coupons on Interest capitalises on the human fear of missing out, in this case missing out on a deal. You have to be quick to use and apply your discount code before it vanishes. It offers instant gratification and in some respect feels earned. A fantastic marketing technique.
Oras Al-Kubaisi created the service entirely by himself, at London Real-Time, as a way to allow sellers to create their own Groupon-esque sites without having to pay for expensive services. There’s no need to hire extra staff for support and sales and it drastically reduces the cost of monitoring.
The London Real-Time judges were so impressed with Coupons on Interest that it won “Best Frankenstein” hack and consequently $1,500 of Amazon Web Services credit.
In the future Oras would like to add the ability to send coupons based on keyword searches, system information, geographic location again powered by the GoSquared API. Additionally he would like to make it easier for you to share the coupon with your friends, family and social networks.
We’re very excited about this creative use of the GoSquared API and want to encourage more developers and entrepreneurs to build fantastic stuff with and around our tools and data.
Find out more information about the hack on the London Real-Time hacks blog.
The source code for Coupons on Interest is available to download at http://shloud.com/realtime-code.zip
Check out a deployed and working version of the app here.
If, like me, you’re on almost every social network on the internet, you’ll need some way of collating them all. That means you’re going to need some social icons to add some flair. Luckily, ol’ GoSquared are on hand to help.
Presenting GoSocial: a set of 41 (and counting) social networks, at the ultra-handy sizes of 16px and 32px. They’re provided in PNG, ready to instantly drop in to your site, but we went a step further: if you need to customise or create any more icons, we gave you a rainbow of blank slates to start from, along with the PSD file that was used to make these icons. Nice, huh?
Anchor CMS, AIM, Apple, Bebo, Blogger, Cloud, Delicious, DeviantArt, Digg, Dribbble, Dropbox, Email, Facebook, Formspring, Forrst, Github, Google, GoSquared, Grooveshark, Last.fm, LinkedIn, lkd.to, MySpace, Path, PayPal, Pinterest, Quora, Reddit, RSS, Skype, SoundCloud, Spotify, Steam, StumbleUpon, Twitter, Vimeo, WordPress, Yahoo!, and Youtube.
Blank slates are provided in black, blue, green, grey, orange, pink, purple, red, white, and yellow. The PSD is also bundled for your convenience.
New to GoSquared?
We do realtime analytics. You should check us out; go sign up for an account here.
If you’ve signed in to your GoSquared account in the last few days you will have noticed some major changes to GoSquared.
Back in February, we celebrated our 6th birthday by releasing the entirely new GoSquared Dashboard into beta for all premium members of GoSquared.
All your sites in one place.
Now when you sign in to GoSquared, instead of getting a list of plans, or viewing your personal details, you get a beautiful overview of all sites in your GoSquared account. Easily see which sites are owned by you and which have been shared with you by other team members.
You can now see how many people are on each of your sites right from home. Click the settings cog icon to change settings for any of your sites – edit its name and URL, change your notification settings, share the site with other team members, and more.
Easier access for developers.
Head over to the “Developer” tab to see your API key and Site Tokens for all of your sites in one easy to read screen.
We’ve always been striving to offer you the best real-time analytics at the very best prices. Until now, we’ve offered monthly plans that can be upgraded, downgraded, or cancelled at any time. In order to drive down the cost for you even further, we’re now offering yearly plans that take the equivalent monthly price down by almost 20%. If you downgrade or upgrade within a year of signing up for a year plan, we’ll credit your account for the remaining time so you won’t lose out.
Time and time again, we’ve had people in the UK asking us why all our pricing has been in USD. The simple reason has, until now, been that we didn’t have time to implement it. We decided to make time, and now GoSquared is available on monthly and yearly plans in both USD and GBP. This also makes invoicing and accounting much better for UK businesses using us. If you’d like to switch over to GBP pricing (if you’re a UK customer paying us in USD) please get in touch with our billing team.
Dramatically better billing system, with invoicing.
You can now grab your invoices in a matter of seconds by going to “My Account” and downloading any that you want as PDFs. We’ll also email you invoices every month.
People use GoSquared on their desktops, and on the go on their phones, and on their iPads. People even use GoSquared on TVs so the whole team can see what’s going on. That’s why we designed Dashboard to work on almost any device, scaling up and down dynamically depending on screen size and browser capabilities. We designed the new Home of GoSquared to work just as well on your phone as it does on your iMac. Try signing in and scaling up and down your browser window – we think you’ll love it.
Another little feature – you can now see how many pagviews you’ve used in your current billing cycle. So you can now very quickly understand when you’re going to go over your limit for the given billing cycle, making it easier to avoid hitting your limit and losing any traffic data.
Follow @GoSquaredStatus for updates on GoSquared uptime and any issues that you may be experiencing. We’ve also included the latest GoSquared Status within Home so every time you sign in you’ll immediately have an answer if anything’s not working as you expect.
We’ve just introduced Layouts – a dramatically better way to arrange your GoSquared Dashboard to suit your needs.
A layout for every member of the team.
Whether you’re the CEO, a member of the sales team, a designer, or on customer support, it’s likely you’ll need access to your analytics. But you don’t necessarily need the same information. You can now customise and save your GoSquared Dashboard to suit you – prioritising what matters most and hiding anything you don’t need.
Clicking the new “Layouts” tab in the GoSquared menu bar will bring a drop down menu that will allow you to select which of your saved layouts you’d like to view, as well as giving you the option to create a new one.
“Edit” lets you edit your current layout and customise it exactly as you wish. Just drag out the widgets you need from the recessed widget area. Hide any widgets from the Dashboard by dragging them back in to the recessed widget area.
We have some great new widgets in the works that’ll help you get the most out of your site and GoSquared.
Layouts will play a key part in streamlining your workflow and enabling you to focus on what matters and cut out the clutter.
Don’t have a GoSquared account? Watch your traffic unfold right now – sign up for the 14 day free trial.
137 developers, 48 hours, 27 hacks, 100L of Orange Juice, 150L of alcohol, 70 large pizzas, 300 croissants, 150 burgers, 200 sausages, 300 Kraft slices, 400 bread buns, 800 cans of Coke, 600 sandwiches and an unlimited amount of coffee from Pret A Manger. These are just some of the select figures from London Real-Time, the weekend long hackathon that GoSquared ran, along with support from Twilio, Pusher, Geckoboard and RabbitMQ.
We can’t do the event justice in a mere blog post, so here’s a wrap up of all of the daily wrap up videos (produced by Olly Newport of Keyone Productions), the blog posts and general media coverage of London Real-Time.
London Real-Time Daily Video Updates
Olly Newport, from Keyone Productions, worked incredibly hard over the weekend to bring daily updates of the previous day’s events at the hackathon. He essentially worked for 72 hours straight, continuously shooting and editing footage, to create three masterpieces which capture the emotion and atmosphere of the weekend perfectly.
Outriders: BBC Radio 5 Live
Jamillah Knowles from BBC Radio 5 Live’s “Outriders” captured the exhaustion of our attendees and organisers at the end of London Real-Time, after the demo afternoon on Sunday. She pieced together a 10 minute documentary into the event and delved into what made it so special.
The Next Web
Jamillah, in her capacity as Editor for The Next Web UK, also wrote two articles covering the event; both before and after the competition started.
PostDesk were our official media partners for London Real-Time. Sam England, Founder and Editor, attended for the full weekend; capturing interviews with attendees and organisers, as well as working closely with Keyone Productions to produce some awesome video coverage.
The GoSquared team is a little on the thin side this morning. Those of us who have turned up look completely and utterly burnt out; dead almost. This past weekend we played host to 137 developers, who created 27 fantastically awesome hacks, all at our very own hackathon; London Real-Time.
A little under two months ago we embarked on the spectacularly foolish, but equally brilliant, idea to organise and run our very own hackathon; along with the help of a few close friends in the form of realtime startups. The result was phenominal.
On Friday 13th April at 6pm, a day traditionally believed to be cursed and unlucky, we threw open the doors of White Bear Yard and kicked things off in style. Attendees were greeting by a smiling team, signed in and then toured around the facilities. Then open bar was flowing with beer, gin, whisky, coke, etc and the GoSquared BBQ was on full blast.
Opening talks were given by GoSquared, Pusher, Twilio, Geckoboard and RabbitMQ. The hackers were introduced to the available APIs with a brief explanation of what was on offer; before delving into some serious coding.
On Saturday and Sunday developers spent their time eating amazing food, hacking together awesome apps and putting themselves through sleep deprevation experiments. Everyone worked incredibly hard to have something presentable for the Sunday afternoon judging.
Prizes were awarded to GoCubed (GoSquared), Tring Tring (Twilio), Shout JS (Pusher), Many Pie Charts (Geckoboard), YouChoose (RabbitMQ) and Coupon Interest (Frankenstein). Each API prize winner was awarded a tablet, of some variety. The winner of the Best Frankenstein app was awarded $1,500 in AWS credit.
All of the hacks have been uploaded to http://hacks.londonrealtime.co.uk – Videos are currently being polished and finished off by Olly Newport, from Keyone Productions, and will be slowly added. Keep your eyes peeled over the coming days for updates.
Although the entire GoSquared team is completely knackered from the event, we’re already plotting and planning a second London Real-Time. Please subscibe to updates at http://londonrealtime.co.uk.
Finally we’d like to thank all of the volunteers, unsung heroes and organisers for London Real-Time. You were fantastic, without you we couldn’t have pulled off such a great event!
You can read more glowing reviews and posts about the weekend’s event here:
PostDesk, Friday: – http://postdesk.com/london-realtime-coverage-day-1
The Kernel, Full wrap up: – http://www.kernelmag.com/scene/1844/an-orgiastic-festival-of-social-awkwardness/
Magnate, Live feed: – http://www.magnatemag.com/2012/04/live-coverage-london-realtime/
Magnate, Full wrap up: – http://www.magnatemag.com/2012/04/whats-not-wrong-with-the-london-startup-scene/
6 years ago, in a garden shed, GoSquared was founded by three 14 year olds. Since then James, Geoff and JT have gone from strength to strength, assembling a great team and building an awesome real-time web analytics service.
Young Rewired State is a week long hackathon for under 18s in the UK. The aim is to get young people to learn how to code, develop their skills, teach other, learn from experienced mentors and create brilliant things with open data.
The initiative is run by Emma Mulqueeny, a special tech advisor to the Mayor of London, and a steering group who oversee the entire project. Young Rewired State is open to anyone in the UK, under the age of 18, whether they can code or just have an interest in technology.
Having started from such a young age too, GoSquared is incredibly excited to announce support and sponsorship for Young Rewired State 2012. Not only will we be providing financial support to the project, many of our team will be on hand throughout the week as mentors.
Young Rewired State still has a long way to go with fundraising and they’re seeking donations from individuals, as well as startups and big corporations. If you can spare as little as £10 to support a fantastic cause please donate to ensure that this event can go ahead – http://www.peoplefund.it/young-rewired-state/
GoSquared is proud to help support the next generation of coders.
We’ve spoken about the APIs. We’ve spoken about the food and drink. We’ve spoken about the location. One thing we haven’t spoken about is the prizes that we’re giving out at London Real-Time.
Each API partner is donating a prize for the best hack that uses their service. GoSquared, Pusher, Geckoboard and RabbitMQ have all promised new retina iPads for the best hack with their APIs; Twilio have yet to confirm what their prize is, but we have a good feeling that it’ll be the same.
What if you’d like to use more than one partner API in your hack though? Why not go all out and use ALL THE APIs in one app?
The Best Frankenstein Hack is an award / prize that will be given to the best result we see, combining the most partner APIs. Our friends at Amazon have kindly agreed to give the winner of The Best Frankenstein Hack $1,500 in Amazon Web Services credit. A prize worth seriously competing for.
Our event is very relaxed and the only rules we have are that whatever you show off at the Sunday demo afternoon must be based around at least one of our partner APIs AND must have originated during the hackathon. Please no cheating and working on hacks weeks before the event, that’s just not cricket.
We hope to see you all there and as an extra incentive the first 50 people to use the promo code “GoSquaredLovesDevs” at http://londonrealtime.co.uk get free entry to the event!
Things have been very hectic since we announced the London Real-Time Hackathon a few weeks ago. Since then we’ve been busily working away to make this a truly awesome event!
When we first announced London Real-Time we initially had three partner APIs that you could hack with. Today we’re happy to announce the support and addition of two further API services for the hackathon; Geckoboard and Rabbit MQ, along with the previously announced GoSquared, Twilio and Pusher.
Geckoboard is a visualisation layer that allows you to see and display your data in a gorgeous dashboard. For the event Geckoboard are opening up, for the first time, their widgets API allowing you to create stunning views and plugins for your hacks.
RabbitMQ is highly reliable, enterprise-grade server-side messaging system. Leveraging the AMQP protocol and built on strong Erlang foundations, RabbitMQ helps developers and ops technicians distribute data between their applications and across their infrastructure via versatile message queues.
On the Friday, weather permitting, we’ll be serving a BBQ on the roof terrace of White Bear Yard. Saturday and Sunday morning sees breakfast catered for by Pret A Manger; who will be providing coffee and a selection of warm and cold breakfast pastries. Pret will also be catering for lunch with some awesome sandwich platters on both days. Saturday night will be full of that old geek food favourite, pizza. Can’t have a Hackathon without pizza, can you? The beer will be in free flow too, as will various soft and drinks.
Finally we’ll be awarding prizes for the best GoSquared, Twilio, Pusher, Geckoboard and Rabbit MQ hacks. Four partners have already agreed that they’re going to be giving away new iPads (with retina displays). A prize for the best hack which uses most of, if not all, of the guest APIs will also be given out; although details about this are yet to be confirmed.
If you’re up for a fantastic weekend of hacking, BBQs, pizza, beer and coffee then please do come along to London Real-Time; we’d be more than happy to have you here! – http://londonrealtime.eventbrite.com
Ambitiously the team are building a geolocation game, based around the concept of a medical disaster. Every player is infected with a disease, the aim of the game is cure as many people as possible in 48 days. Completing a series of challenges regains the players health, some of these require real world interactions with other players.
In what might seem a controversial move, Outbreak48 won’t launch their game until they have at lest 2,000 signups. Head on over to http://outbreak48.com to see what all of the fuss is about.
The team are creating a bunch of digital media leads in order drive traffic to their site.
GoSquared are proud to be supporting and sponsoring Launch48 in Birmingham. Two of our team members are at the event this weekend to act as mentors and assist wherever possible.
The web industry is incredibly fast paced. Coming up with an idea, designing and building a minimum viable product and launching a company now only takes a few hours; a few years ago it used to take at least months.
Launch48 runs a series of events around the UK that encourage entrepreneurs, designers and developers to build companies and web apps in just a few days. Supported by mentors and already established startups, participants get a truly unique deep-end experience in creating their own apps; with a view to potentially launch them as fully established companies a few months after the event.
We’re proud to announce that GoSquared will be sponsoring and supporting Launch48 in Birmingham this coming weekend (Friday 16th March – Sunday 18th March). Along with giving away t-shirts and coding cheat sheets, team members Chris Leydon and Jack Kingston will be on hand as mentors. Both will be sharing their experiences on creating and working for startups, as well as providing support to participants.
If you’re attending Launch48, and have any questions about getting started with GoSquared, be sure to track down Chris and Jack; they’ll be more than happy to help and chat!
The iPad is a magical device and it’s a well known fact that GoSquared has a soft spot for Apple. Today the iPad launches around the world, but we were the first in the UK to get our hands on this ‘resolutionary device’. Chris Leydon, our new Evangelist, queued outside Tottenham Court Road’s PC World for 6 hours to become the first person in the UK to purchase the (new) iPad (3rd generation).
Above is the first unboxing video of the new iPad, in the UK.
Don’t forget to download our new GoSquared LiveStats iPad app for your new iPads too!
Hacker News London is a free meetup held just off Silicon Roundabout held once a month. With every meetup that’s passed the event has been steadily growing in audience size and attracting some incredibly high profile speakers, such as Joel Spolsky (co-founder of StackOverflow).
At GoSquared we’re firm believers in supporting the ecosystem that we’re part of. This month we’re happy to announce that we’ll be sponsoring Hacker News London, taking place on March 22nd.
James Gill, our CEO, will be taking to the stage to deliver a short and sweet sponsor message and hand out a bunch of free t-shirts and coding cheat sheets. Other members of our team will also be on hand to answer any questions you have about GoSquared and to hopefully get you set up!
We’ll also be speaking very briefly about London Real-Time, our forthcoming hack weekend. Sign up for more info about that at http://londonrealtime.co.uk
Anything less than instant just isn’t worth the time. We demand that our apps work in real-time, that our customer support is in real-time and that our stats-monitoring is in real-time too.
We’re inviting you to come along to our home and build some fantastic real-time hacks using our data and APIs. Prizes will be awarded for the best GoSquared, Twilio and Pusher hacks, as well as the best combo award.
We’ll be kicking everything off in style on the evening of Friday 13th April and you’re more than welcome to stay in our offices until we wrap on Sunday afternoon. Food and drink will be available throughout the weekend, as will fast broadband and help from all of the partnering startups.
Signup to our mailing list (http://londonrealtime.co.uk) for more info and to find out when tickets are released. The event will be free but limited to around 150 people.
We look forward to seeing you there!
Sam England is the founder and editor of PostDesk, a new online independent editorial community. PostDesk have been using GoSquared LiveStats to monitor their content traffic in realtime and react to it immediately. Here Sam explains how PostDesk have used LiveStats to its full potential.
When we first rolled out GoSquared across our pre-launch blog, we didn’t intend for it to become so widely adopted across the entire team to the extent that it has. It’s become an integral part of the way we work and will play a significant role especially after we launch.
PostDesk will become the place to discuss, debate and read independent editorial content online, including opinion pieces, feature articles, reviews and interviews all produced by our strong community. As an editorial site, analytics are imperative to almost every aspect of the whole project.
GoSquared primarily has provided those tasked with overseeing analytics with a clear and real-time indication of who was visiting our site, from where and on what device. This made their job far easier with regard to compiling reports, measuring the success of editorial, and of the technical changes we made to the site. It also made setting performance targets, which we’d use after we launch, very easy. Frankly, these are typical uses of analytics and the real-time element came as a welcome bonus.
Where GoSquared really shined, and where it went above and beyond its remit – was when we experimented with giving the entire team access to GoSquared. This eliminated the need for one person to have oversight of analytics. Giving the entire team access was incredibly straightforward for us to do using the backend control panel – so we gave it a try.
The results were outstanding. GoSquared has changed the way we operate entirely, and will certainly play an integral role within PostDesk after we launch.
In giving all of our development team access to GoSquared, they can now see the impact of performance tweaks, server side fine-tuning and changes they make to the front and backend code on the live site in real time. Additionally – it allows us to detect and anticipate traffic spikes far earlier than when our uptime monitoring solutions enable us to, and even our server side logging permits us to. Using the alerts system built in to GoSquared – we can set GoSquared to alert us as soon as concurrent visitors reach a certain level. The user interface might be stunning, but the depth of information hasn’t been compromised. The data provided by GoSquared is sufficient for a highly technical audience. Developers can watch GoSquared and identify the traffic sources and levels in order to make well- informed decisions concerning anything from precise performance tweaks, to substantial increases in server resources.
The in-house editorial team also now have full access to GoSquared. This has proven fundamental to the way we operate, and to the personal motivation of those writing for us. Each and every writer can feel the buzz and exhilaration of seeing their piece going viral and receiving a traffic spike – small or large, in real- time. It has provided a truly great confidence boost especially for up and coming writers who benefit hugely from the reaffirmation that their article is being read and appreciated widely. It also allows for analysis of the traffic sources in real- time, allowing for the writer to monitor where the piece has been posted, and allowing them to intervene at an early stage if need be in cases where the piece has been posted to sites such as Reddit or to discussion forums. Were it not for GoSquared, it may take days to discover such postings.
With the highly visual live stats, a world map showing concurrent users, and with the in-depth information about traffic sources – the experience is entirely different from having an analytics report delivered from, for example, Google Analytics – up to 48 hours after the piece went viral; and then having to sift through this for relevant information. Not only does this mean productivity is increased and time is saved, but it means that members of our team have a real and personal connection with our platform through analytics – something which should be high on the priorities of any online start-up.
We’re also planning to provide sales and marketing teams with full GoSquared access – this allows them to monitor performance of campaigns, online (social media or email), and even offline (word of mouth marketing or exposure during events). This is where the geographical indications provided by GoSquared will come in particularly useful too.
The aesthetics of GoSquared are a fundamental reason as to why it works so well – and a key reason as to why it’s been welcomed by quite literally our entire team, including non-technical members. It works perfectly displayed on an LCD screen in our office too. Not only does this look the part, but it also it provides those in the office with a snapshot of what’s going on at a glance.
We’re looking at taking things further after we launch PostDesk. We’re seriously considering how we can offer all of our contributors easy access to GoSquared, not just in the name of transparency – but so each and every contributor to PostDesk can feel first hand, and in real-time the tangible and compelling feeling of having their piece receive widespread attention online. This is something that no other analytics service can offer – and it’s why GoSquared goes far beyond the remit of a traditional analytics service. The possibilities are endless, and GoSquared is opening doors for us that we didn’t even know existed.
The main PostDesk community platform launches on March 7th to users with early access invites, which are still available through PostDesk.com. Shortly after this, the main community site will go live to the public. It will become the place to discuss, debate and read independent editorial content online, including opinion pieces, feature articles, reviews and interviews all produced by our strong community – which you can become a part of.