Web analytics tools seek to monitor and report on the interaction between Internet users and specific websites or marketing initiatives for the purpose of improving those interactions.
This definition is a little more broad than it would have been a few years ago, when web analytics tools tended to focus on on-site data collection — things like counting site visitors and page views. While this sort of data is still at the core of web analytics tools and web intelligence — the art of interpreting what those tools indicate — some solutions are beginning to reach beyond relatively simple site statistics into measuring the effect of all sorts of marketing efforts on traffic and visitors.
As an example, the popular Google Analytics suite can monitor traffic arriving from social media campaigns or email marketing, help determine the value and effectiveness of some pay-per-click advertising campaigns, or even track conversions.
Ultimately, the goal is to improve user’s website and marketing experience — helping with product discovery, education, or even entertainment — and simultaneously achieving the marketer’s goals whether those goals are to sell more products and increase interaction.
While the scope of what web analytics seeks to collect, measure, analyze, and report on has grown, so have the options in terms of excellent web analytics solutions. In this article, I’ll list ten of the leading web analytics solutions available to today’s marketers.
According to a testimonial from Overstock.com, the SiteCatalyst web analytics solution helped the company increase its checkout conversion rate some 70 percent. The amazing improvement was due to the intelligence SiteCatalyst provided. With these sorts of results, it is fairly easy to look past the long name and the enterprise-level pricing. SiteCatalyst is also part of the Adobe Online Marketing Suite, which includes some of the best social media, mobile, and video engagement measurement tools.
The secret to successful online marketing is knowing what works and getting behind those efforts as quickly as possible. The IBM Coremetrics web analytics suite is built to quickly provide actionable information that will help marketers succeed.
With Coremetrics, a marketer is really getting a complete online marketing optimization tool kit that should not only provide data about how a website affects visitors, but also information about social media, email, and advertising return on investment. This solution also has enterprise level pricing that requires prospects to contact the Coremetrics sales team.
Google Analytics is one of the single most popular web analytics tools and a mainstay of entrepreneurs and small business marketers. The solution offers many of the features found in enterprise-level solutions, but is available for free to anyone. There are also a number of excellent tutorials that explain how to use Google Analytics, so that while this service does not necessarily include the level of support and training available with enterprise solutions, learning to use the tool is not terribly difficult.
Webtrends boasts more than 3,500 clients, including some of the most admired ecommerce businesses. The solution has a long history and is considered by some to be a leader in mobile and social media data collection. For comprehensive, digital marketing intelligence, Webtrends is a clear leader. This is another solution were marketers will need to contact the company for specific pricing, since the product is configurable.
VisiStat is a web analytics solution aimed at small and medium sized businesses. While the tool has many advanced features, it aims to simplify analytics reporting and provide very clear and actionable data. The solution is $49.99 per month.
Snoobi’s web analytics solutions include several ecommerce specific tools aimed specifically at helping online merchants learn which marketing and advertisings tactics are generating the most sales. The solution also includes support and runs about $140 per month and up. Most — if not all — of Snoobi’s customers are European, so expect a European flavor to customer support and documentation matters.
Truviso offers a scalable and real-time suite of analytics solutions, including visitor data, online advertising data, and online video measurement. The company’s analytics engine may also be white labeled so that some businesses could be using Truviso without even realizing it.
Reinvigorate uses globally-distributed tracking code to monitor real-time site traffic data, provide industry-leading heatmaps, and offer known user tagging to help site owners with personalized marketing analysis. The solution starts at just $10 per month, and is promising to add many new features, including Ajax tracking. Also, Reinvigorate is a Webtrends product, so it may benefit from its parent company’s extensive experience in the market.
Mint is a web analytics solution that costs just $30 per site and allows business owners to host their own web analytics tool set. Mint is particularly good for marketers that publish a lot of content — for example on a blog — that is syndicated and read using RSS feed readers.
Along with its many capabilities, Woopra allows users to filter site traffic data by community, feed reader traffic, email, and social media. The solution has an excellent user interface too.
Clicky is a very good, real-time web analytics solutions that focuses on making using web analytics simple.
Piwik is an open source, real-time web analytics solutions that runs on a user’s own web servers. The solution also has an extended development community.