Practical Ecommerce

22 Analytics Tools for Online Businesses

Measuring the behavior of a site’s visitors is crucial to understanding what works and what doesn’t. With these 22 analytics tools, you can analyze your site’s traffic – see which products are popular, which blog posts are most clicked, where your visitors are coming from and how long they are staying on your site. Then make more informed decisions about the direction of your site and the content on it.

Measuring Website Traffic and Visitor Behavior

  1. Google Analytics. One of the most widely used and popular analytics tools – it’s free, provides detailed information about visitors and content, but is generally a few hours behind. Price: Free
  2. ChartBeat. A real-time analytics solution to monitor the traffic you have, where it’s coming from, and where and when that traffic leaves. Price: $9.95 – $149.95 per month.
  3. Mint. Visits, referrers, popular pages and searches on your site can all be measured. Price: One-time $30 license, per website.
  4. Piwik. An open-source analytics option that is real-time and gives detailed reports on your website visitors – the search engines and keywords they used to get there, the language they speak, popular pages and much more. Price: Free.

    Google Analytics home page.

    Google Analytics home page.

  5. FireClick Advanced Warehouse. A comprehensive view into the activity on your website, search engine behavior, marketing campaign activity and emails. Price: Dependent on size of website.
  6. Clicky. A real-time analytics solution to see up-to-the-minute activity on your site. Compare snapshots of time on your site — such as the last 30 days or even last year. Also comes with a Twitter analytics tool that can help you monitor what people are saying about your company in the Twitterverse. Price: Free – $9.99 per month.
  7. HitsLink. One of the longest running companies in web analytics, HitsLink analyzes traffic patterns on your site in real-time, tracks search terms from 300 search engines, detailed visitor navigation paths on your website and alerts when traffic is high or low. Price: Dependent on size of website.
  8. SiteMeter. Measure your site’s visitors, what websites they are coming from, and where they are going to on your site. Price: Free – $199.95 per month.
  9. WebTrends Analytics. A comprehensive look at how visitors are interacting with your site. You can measure website activity, mobile app activity and how your customers interact with your Facebook page. Price: Packages vary on size of website and amount of traffic.
  10. comScore Digital Analytix. Track and measure very specific details of your visitor demographics. Determine how visitors of a particular age or gender interact with your site and content. Price: Packages vary on size of website and amount of traffic.

    Piwik home page.

    Piwik home page.

  11. Woopra. You get all the analytics tools you are used to having – traffic, visitor data, and search and keyword analysis, as well as live tracking of visitor interaction, and much more.
  12. ClickFox. Aggregates and measures visitor data, allowing website owners to track the actual path taken for every customer interaction on your site. Price: Packages vary on size of website and amount of traffic.
  13. CoreMetrics. A cross-platform analysis tool that allows for analysis of your website traffic, link conversion metrics, Facebook and Twitter interaction, and more. Price: Packages vary on size of website and amount of traffic.
  14. WebTraffIQ. A complete marketing-campaign tracking solution, measuring a business’s online and offline marketing platforms. Price: Packages vary on size of website and amount of traffic.
    Clicky home page.

    Clicky home page.

    Tracking of Competitors

  15. Compete. Get real-time data on the keywords that are driving traffic to your site and your competitors’ sites, which search engines visitors use to visit your site and your competitors’, and much more. Price: $199 – $499 per month.
  16. Alexa. A free online search tool that gives data on traffic, search engines, user demographics, top-used sites. Price: Free.
  17. Hitwise. Get an insight into your competitors’ traffic and visitor data, identify websites that attract your target market, understand where new and returning customers go before they come to your site and where they go after and more. Price: Depends on service and size of report; for custom reports, try the Hitwise Research Store for $695 per report.
    Compete home page.

    Compete home page.

    Visual Tracking Tools

  18. CrazyEgg. Get a visual “heat map” of what visitors actually clicked on each page of your website, to help with optimization. Price: $9 – $99 per month.
  19. ClickHeat. A free open-source heat map generator of all the clicks on your website, to help determine what users are actually doing on each page. Price: Free.
  20. MouseFlow. A detailed heat map solution that not only generates a heat map of clicks, but also of scroll and cursor movement – you can even record visitor’s sessions on your site to study later. Price: Free – $287 per month.
  21. ClickDensity. Generate a heat map of each page of your website to see exactly where your users are clicking – a good tool for site optimization and layout.
  22. ClickTale. Watch and analyze user behavior in real time, generate custom heat maps of user activity based around mouse cursor movement, mouse clicks and scrolling and track how users respond to your links. You can record visitor sessions for later analysis, as well. Price: Free – $990 per month.

    ClickTale home page.

    ClickTale home page.

Practical Ecommerce

Practical Ecommerce

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Comments ( 5 )

  1. Shilo Jones April 13, 2011 Reply

    This is an incredible list of tools with a primary focus on understanding visitor behavior to your site. If you’ve never used ClickTale, it is amazing and is a must just for the eerie big brother value. I am pretty sure they have some cheaper options, at least they did when I used the tool a year or so ago.

    One that I’d add to the list is 4Q from iPerceptions, they have a free version and are now announcing a new paid version that has integration with Google Analytics, which will be cool. This is a great tool for analyzing "why" visitors are coming to your site and if they are successful or not. Definitely worth checking out.

    Of course, if I didn’t mention our customer analytics offering then I’d definitely be in the wrong business. SweetMetrics is designed to analyze your customer base, which will give online retailers a view into metrics like retention rate, lifetime value and the growth of of your active and inactive customers. We don’t really see ourselves as a tool provider, but more as an extension of your internal team providing online merchants with analytics, insights and answers to their questions and with plans starting at $29 per month we’ve priced the service for virtually any size e-commerce company.

    After building evo.com for the last 8 years, I set out to build a product offering that was something that I wish I had access to and with SweetMetrics, I feel we’ve definitely accomplished that.

  2. Jenna_Breitbarth April 13, 2011 Reply

    Another great (and free) analytic tool for measuring your company’s success online is Pixability’s online video grader.

    The grader compares your company’s online video marketing to that of other companies of similar size and gives you a score out of 100. All you have to do is enter your company’s website and YouTube channel address, and you can use the grader as many times as you want, which makes it a great tool to track your progress. The grader also gives you tips on how to improve your use of online video to market your company.

    It can be accessed at : http://bit.ly/gk0Rlq

  3. Paula Biles April 14, 2011 Reply

    Thanks for another excellent and comprehensive article, with practical applications for small businesses.
    An additional analytic tool is http://www.StatCounter.com with options from free and up. It’s very user friendly and gives good explanations of the stats it provides. (I’ve used it on all my websites for years and recently upgraded to a paid account.)

  4. Ron Carson May 13, 2011 Reply

    Great article! I’m going to chime in here and suggest a couple of others. For tracking competitors SEO efforts, I’ve been pleased with the intel you can get from Link-Assistant.com.

    For clearly seeing "conversion paths" – how your customers found you, interacted with your site over multiple days/visits and marketing touch points – Spring Metrics (www.springmetrics.com) has a real-time conversion dashboard that shows you what’s working at a glance.

  5. sinan June 1, 2015 Reply

    Thanks a lot for such a great list.I would like to recommend a great and free Competitive Intelligence tool for small e-commerce companies. Prisync.com helps e-commerce companies of all sizes to set the best competitive pricing strategy. Prisync.com monitors competitor prices, stocks & assortments automatically, in of the most frequent ways.Prisync is already being used by various small businesses along with companies like Mediamarkt, Toshiba, Nike etc.However, the best part is that we just launched our new service model, where small and medium e-commerce companies can monitor competitor prices with our self-service module, and they can enjoy our Freemium monthly packages, and can use Prisync for free for up to 10 SKUs, for ever.