Exploring Alternatives to Google Analytics: 5 Privacy-Centric Web Analytics Platforms to Replace GA4

| | 6 min read

Web analytics serves as a powerful business tool, enabling companies to understand how their web properties are used and to comprehend user behavior on their web platforms. This approach streamlines marketing efforts and enhances the crucial revenue-to-marketing-cost ratio, thereby boosting overall business efficiency.

There are many tools available for capturing traffic analytics on your web properties. Google Analytics is a popular tool used by 90% of websites. However, with the shutdown of their popular product, Universal Analytics, and the release of Google Analytics 4, many organizations are now seeking alternative solutions. This article explores five privacy-first alternatives to Google Analytics 4 for use on your website.

Google Analytics 4

limitations of GA4

Google Analytics 4 (GA4) is currently the most popular web analytics tool, and it's free to use. However, if you want to maintain control over the data collected from your web properties, desire ownership of that data, and are seeking a privacy-first solution, GA4 might not be the ideal "Web Analytics Platform" for you. Although it supports exporting log-level data to BigQuery, and regardless of its privacy claims, you must agree to Google's terms and conditions, meaning your data is always with Google.

Fortunately, there are alternatives. Some of these are free and open-source software, giving you full control, while others are proprietary SaaS solutions with strong measures in place to protect user privacy.



Top 5 GA4 Alternatives

Let's dive into the best GA4 alternatives.

We are not affiliated with any of the tools mentioned here. However, we have carefully evaluated each and have only included those tools that are either free and open source or have strong measures in place to protect user privacy.

1. Matomo     


Formerly known as Piwik, Matomo is a popular free and open-source web analytics software platform licensed under GNU GPL. Its primary mission is to provide website owners with comprehensive insights into their web traffic and audience. What sets Matomo apart is its ability to deliver detailed reports covering diverse aspects of your website and its visitors.

From the search engines and keywords driving traffic, to the preferred language of your audience, and even their interactions with specific pages and downloadable files, Matomo offers valuable data. It aims to be a robust open-source alternative to the ubiquitous Google Analytics. Additionally, it has a SaaS offering for those who prefer not to use on-premise hosting. The SaaS platform also includes a few proprietary plugins.

Matomo’s Features and Advantages

Here are some of its standout advantages:

  • Data Ownership and Privacy: Perhaps the crown jewel of Matomo’s offerings is its unwavering commitment to data ownership and privacy. 
  • Free and Open Source and Customizable: Matomo is a Free Software. Its source code is available to all who seek to use, modify, or customize it to suit their unique needs.
  • Comprehensive Analytics: Matomo provides in-depth analytics and tracking for websites and applications to gain valuable insights.     
Source: Matomo

Matomo comes with a UA backup plugin which can be used to download UA data to Matomo. We use that to help our clients migrate their Universal Analytics Data to Matomo to keep a backup of their historical data.

2. Plausible


Plausible Analytics is a free and open-source web analytics tool with a distinct mission: combat corporate surveillance. It provides site owners with actionable data for improvement, all while ensuring a delightful visitor experience. No cookies, no personal data collection, and zero cross-site or cross-device tracking – it’s privacy-first analytics.

Source: Plausible


Plausible Analytics is a privacy-focused alternative to traditional Google Analytics, offering several distinctive features and advantages:

   • Privacy-Centric Approach: Plausible Analytics prioritizes user privacy by not using cookies or tracking personally identifiable information. This aligns with evolving data protection regulations.     
   • Lightweight and Fast: Plausible is designed for speed, with a minimalist script that doesn’t slow down websites. Its cloud infrastructure ensures reliable performance, improving site loading times and user experience.     
   • Free and Open Source: Plausible is free and open-source software enabling transparency, control, and flexibility in website analytics for users.

It also comes with a SaaS hosted edition with transparent pricing model and a user-friendly dashboard, make Plausible Analytics an appealing option for those seeking insightful website analytics while respecting user privacy.

Plausible Dashboard



3. Sealmetrics


If you are looking to capture 100% of the visitors coming to your website without any cookie consent popup, Sealmetrics is for you. It is a SaaS-based platform that guarantees privacy for your visitors. It does not use cookies but is still able to track all the key metrics. Many people use it as an additional tool to capture 100% of the traffic. This is the perfect tool if you do not want to track individual user behavior.


Source: Seal Metrics

The history of SEALMetrics is interesting. Here's what its founder, Rafael, says about it.

“Dad, should I accept cookies?”

That question changed my life. My knee jerk reaction with my 20+ years in the analytics space managing over €50M in ad budget was to say “yes!”. Then it hit me: I don’t want Big Techs profiling my son, which means GDPR compliance is insufficient. We asked ourselves bold questions: If we didn’t track people, what data could we get, and how useful would it be? That is how SEAL was born to be the Analytics solution that hundreds of Marketers use daily with peace of mind regarding data quality and visitor privacy.
We are proud to do our part toward a future that respects individuals. A world where Humans and Brands connect and thrive.

Rafael Jimenez

4. Fathom Analytics


In the world of website analytics, we've long faced issues of complexity and data exploitation by tech giants. This is where Fathom emerges as a superior alternative to Google Analytics. Fathom reimagines analytics by prioritizing user privacy and simplifying the process. It features a user-friendly interface and complies with privacy regulations, facilitating data-driven decision-making without compromising visitor privacy. Fathom makes analytics straightforward and keeps privacy intact, offering a win-win solution for both businesses and users.

   • Privacy-First Analytics: Fathom Analytics places user privacy at the forefront. It doesn’t rely on invasive tracking methods, ensuring compliance with strict privacy regulations like GDPR and CCPA.      
   • User-Friendly Interface: Fathom boasts a sleek and intuitive dashboard, making website analytics accessible for everyone. Its straightforward design simplifies data interpretation, allowing businesses to grasp key insights quickly.     
   • Page-Level Insights: Fathom offers detailed analytics per-page basis, helping users pinpoint performance and engagement trends for individual web content.

Source: Fanthom Analytics

5. Cloudflare Web Analytics


Cloudflare Web Analytics brings a refreshing approach to website analytics. It offers privacy-focused insights without requiring DNS changes or routing traffic through Cloudflare’s proxy. This means you get valuable data without compromising on speed or privacy. Setting it up is a breeze – just a Cloudflare account and a simple JavaScript snippet on your website. This beacon utilizes the Performance API, ensuring compatibility across major web browsers. With Cloudflare Web Analytics, you gain a comprehensive understanding of your website’s performance, enabling you to enhance user experiences while respecting their privacy.


   • Privacy-Preserving Insights: Cloudflare Web Analytics stands out for its commitment to privacy. It doesn’t alter DNS settings or route traffic, ensuring visitor data remains secure and uncompromised.      
   • Simplified Setup: With a Cloudflare account and a small JavaScript snippet, you’re ready to dive into your website’s performance metrics.      
   • Global Content Delivery: Cloudflare’s content delivery network accelerates website loading speed and ensures reliability through its worldwide network.


The Final Thoughts

Certainly, the importance of choosing the appropriate analytics solution is critical. It enables informed decision-making, which in turn enhances user experiences and drives conversions. Moreover, prioritizing privacy and compliance not only fosters trust but also ensures adherence to legal standards. Consequently, your selection of an analytics tool forms the foundation of a successful and responsible digital presence.

FeaturesGoogle Analytics 4MatomoPlausibleSealmetricsFathom AnalyticsCloudfare Web Analytics
Platforms SupportedSaaS/WebSaaS/Web, On-PremisesSaaS/Web, On-PremisesSaaS/WebSaaS/WebSaaS/Web
LicenseProprietoryFree and Open SourceFree and Open SourceProprietoryProprietoryProprietory