Why does AWStats show different numbers than Google Analytics?
These systems have a similar purpose, but measure things in different ways. Because of that, they can show different numbers. It’s important to understand what each is capable of tracking.
What’s the difference?
AWStats examines our Web server logs and counts every “hit” to any URL on your site. This includes “hits” to “404 not found” URLs that don’t exist and “hits” to URLs that aren’t Web pages (such as images that are hotlinked from other sites). It calculates “unique visitors” by checking whether the IP address of the hits is different.
Each of these approaches has its strengths and weaknesses. If you have a large number of visitors to your site, the differences will often disappear into the noise. But if your site has a small number of visitors and some of those “visitors” are requesting pages that Google Analytics or other systems can’t see, the difference can be fairly large in percentage terms.
If you care about the difference, you need to think about what each is measuring and use the system that comes closest to what you care about.
If you’re a technically advanced user and want more details about the raw data used by AWStats, you can download and view the original Web server logs yourself.