As someone that loves all types of metrics I was really glad to have discovered Github's traffic analytics. They've been around for a while, but I never knew about them and I wanted to share an introduction to the analytics.
You can access the analytics by navigating to insights -> traffic. Github displays various graphs/tables:
- Git clones
- Amount of visitors
- Referring sites
- Popular content
I use Git clones to understand both usage of the repository and OSS contributions by other developers. Repository usage is particularly insightful when creating projects/modules that are downloaded and used via Git. An example of this is my recent Terraform project terraform-cloudflare-maintenance, every time someone uses the module it gets cloned. Here's the analytics graph on Github clones:
The amount of visitors is straightforward, just a simple graph of visitors. However, you can pair this graph with dates you shared your project on Hackernews or Reddit and see if there are any traffic spikes! I shared the Terraform project on Reddit and got around 50 stars and a traffic spike from Reddit as you can see below:
The most interesting data presented by Github are referring sites. Just as any business analytics tool, you can see key referral sites. I measure the success of my previously shared projects on various platforms. Then, I know where I should share all my future projects. So far, I've had great success with SRE/DevOps specifics subreddits (/r/terraform, /r/sre, /r/devops). The same project as in the previous images can be seen below:
Lastly Github tracks the most popular content in your repository, however in my case this has not been particularly useful. I'll anyways share a screenshot of the table from the same repository:
I loved the insights and analytics, hope you do too!