Plausible Website Analytics: Sustainable Analytics

Could your eCommerce analytics tool be causing unnecessary harm to the environment? Plausible have created a lightweight analytics tool aimed at faster page loads, and a reduced carbon footprint.

Plausible Website Analytics is a lightweight alternative to Google Analytics, with the reduced script size creating faster page loads, and as a result, a reduced carbon footprint for a more sustainable analytics tool.

With a script 45 times smaller than Google Analytics, Plausible is highlighting both the commercial and environment upside of their product, a ‘win-win’ which is becoming common for many sustainability initiatives.

With the reduced script size, Plausible Website Analytics aims to cut down page weight, reducing page load, increasing conversion, all the while reducing the carbon footprint of a website.

Carbon Footprint of a Website

The carbon footprint of the internet is significant. The average website produces 4.61 grams of Co2 every time someone views a new page. For a site that averages 10,000 page views per month, that equates to 553 kg (0.55 tonnes) of Co2 emissions per year.

Comparatively, according to the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), an economy-class return flight from London to New York emits a similar amount, estimated at 0.67 tonnes of CO2 per passenger.

The amount of energy, and in turn time, required to load a webpage is affected by many things. Image sizes, database calls, and inefficient or complex code will all have an impact, but another factor will be the analytics integration used to report user behaviour.

Google Data Centre Belgium Onsite Solar
Google Data Centre Belgium Onsite Solar

Sustainable Analytics

There are many different analytics tools available for eCommerce businesses. These analytics tools range from the well-known industry giants like Google Analytics and Adobe Analytics, platform-specific add-ons from the likes of Shopify and Magento, through to more boutique solutions from Matamo and Kissmetrics.

All analytics solutions work in a similar way. By adding tagging onto elements of a webpage, extra lines of code are effectively added to a site to push data back to the web analytics tool. This data on consumer behaviour can range from how long they spent on a given page, through to precisely what actions they performed while browsing a website.

The key thing is that regardless of what is being tracked, this passing of data requires energy. 

Plausible Website Analytics provides the following estimates for the amount of data passed by different analytics tools:

Plausible Website Analytics- Sustainable Analytics
Plausible Website Analytics- Sustainable Analytics

Plausible Website Analytics: Carbon Savings

The amount of data passed by an analytics tool can be directly correlated to its carbon footprint. These calculations have been provided by Plausible to explain the environmental benefits of their sustainable analytics tool.

  1. Google Analytics & Tag Manager = 45.7 KB script.
  2. Plausible = under 1 KB script. 
  3. Page size reduced by 44.3 KB for each visitor.
  4. With 10,000 monthly visitors, 0.443 GB less data transfer per month. 
  5. 5 GB of data transfer saved per year saved
  6. 1.8 kWh (kilowatt‐hours) energy usage for every GB of data transfer.
  7. 9.6 kWh saved per year for a single website by reducing one analytics script.
  8. Carbon intensity of the electricity generation is 475g of CO2 per kWh.
  9. Annual saving of 4.5 kg of CO2 emissions.

Plausible Website Analytics: Page Speed

Alongside the reduced carbon footprint, reducing the load time of a webpage has a direct impact on the commercial performance for an online retailer.

From an acquisition perspective, Google has consistently announced in recent years the importance of load time in the ranking algorithm. Fast websites will get an improved organic position, and typically pay a lower cost due to the improved usability of webpages.

When looking at conversion, the potential impact is even greater. Walmart reported that for every 1 second improvement in page load time, their conversions increased by 2%. To put this into perspective, for an eCommerce site turning over 10 million dollars in annual sales, a 1-second improvement in page load (and 2% increase in conversion rate) would equate to $200,000 extra revenue.

Read more about Sustainable Analytics and Plausible Website Analytics at

Further Reading: Powering the Cloud: What Is the Carbon Footprint of the Internet? Read More

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