Is SiteMeter Finally Dead?

I’ve been using SiteMeter since the earliest days* of OTB, going back to February 4, 2003. There have been some glitches from time to time over the years but, for the most part, it’s done a good job of tracking visits in real time.  It’s been down for three days now and, given that their website hasn’t been updated in years—they’re still “sponsored” by the old Truth Laid Bear site, which hasn’t been in operation in forever—I’m wondering if there’s anyone there doing maintenance anymore.

Google Analytics and others do a better job of tracking visitors. But SiteMeter has always had three advantages that kept it on my site. First, because I’ve used it since the beginning, it give me a steady state measure. Second, because it was so ubiquitous in those early days, it gives me a means of comparing performance to other blogs. Third, it lets me know who’s on my site and sending people to my site in real time.  Google Analytics, by contrast, tells me who was on the site yesterday.

UPDATE: Well, the stats are back. Either this weekend had the worst traffic in recent OTB history or it’s missing some of the data from the down period. That’s annoying but it’s happened before.

*I started the site on January 31, a Friday, and installed it the following Tuesday, having taken the weekend off.

FILED UNDER: Blogosphere, OTB History,
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Elise says:

    I’ve been using Sitemeter since 2005. I love being able to track the growth of my site over the last 7 years through Sitemeter. I also love seeing the stats real time. I also love how simple it is. No nonsense. I just go to the site and immediately see what is going on. Google Analytics gives more data but it much more of a pain to navigate. I hope Sitemeter isn’t dead, but it sure looks like it doesn’t it! So annoying.

  2. CGHill says:

    I started on SM in 1999. It’s always seemed to me that glitches tracked very nicely with the vacation days of the one or two people who actually do tech support.

  3. CGHill says:

    Just dug down through their Knowledge Base. There’s an empty page called “Moving Servers” dated last Friday, which would explain the occasional outage this weekend, anyway.

  4. Ron Beasley says:

    StatCounter is good and dependable. They have even done an upgrade recently.

  5. marzydotes says:

    Yeah they’re changing servers which is why it’s been down since Friday but you had to go on a treasure hunt just to find that info out. It’s too bad they can’t do a blanket email to all the emails on their account ahead of time at least those who pay monthly fees for premium service.

    Don’t know if it’s coming back. I remember the last upgrade, LOL. It never was stable and lasted all of four hours before they rolled it back to where they started.

  6. Jim says:

    Google Analytics actually has recently rolled out a “Real-Time” Beta feature, though it’s still a bit wonky to really get a good handle on visitors for the current day.

  7. LeadWeb says:

    Sitemeter seems to be down or still not Updating anyway since the original post that they were moving servers. It’s starting to look like a dead one with just the server holding it online. It takes a week to to get response from their “support” and it’s Purely a Copy/Paste of their original post. Much of their support system is down/blocked/dead.

    We are having to look for another service now because every other day or so their image drops causing errors on our sites which has already effected Google Rankings.

    After so many years with them I hate to say this but Beware.