When I started developing websites, blogs and online tools more than I decade ago the value of log files hit me right away. Because these could be useful someday they have followed me around for some time. Google recently made some changes that enhanced their already great Google Analytics product.
There are without a doubt alternatives but each of these involves running and managing additional programs on the server. Another advantage is the way Google Analytics works with Google AdSense (see affiliate link below) which helps keep this site's hosting bill paid for. Along with the realization that the log files from sites that have been inactive for years aren't ever really going to be very useful. The sites that were online in 1995 to compete with them are just a different lot and there's little hat can't be better judged by a couple of weeks of Google Analytics to look at the sites. Read more about Uncluttering with Google Analytics