Every business generates data and records them as part of its operational requirement. The data, particularly related to websites of companies, can come in many forms such as the number of users visiting your site and their locations or better, the number of them purchasing products from your site among others.
If left unattended the data can be treated as plain gibberish occupying precious server space whereas if analysed with proper tools and acted upon, can be transformational to the business. The methodology of web data analytics includes measuring the user traffic, predicting performance, gauging customer satisfaction levels and other attributes of business by using statistics and computer programming.
Why web data analytics is important
- To find out current level of performance of your website and areas of improvement
- To extract actionable information to improve marketing strategies, boost performance and improve decision making
- To know the profile of users and understand their browsing & buying patterns
- To predict changing user behaviour, market dynamics, and their impact on business
As the challenges before businesses become more complex and patterns of data more unwieldy, the use of analytics tools has become important more than ever before. Thus, to leverage the functionality of the available tools or services to the benefit of your business, engaging professional online advertising services with the right expertise can be a thoughtful strategy. Let’s discuss the top five web analytics tools that are widely used in most companies of today, and the ones you can readily use to help transform your business.
Google Analytics: Arguably the most popular among all the existing web analytics tools, this comes free with the following attributes. However, a subscription based version called Google Analytics 360 is available as well for enterprise users.
- Tracks and collates the source of web data spread across channels, devices, and locations
- Tracks the user activity on a website on the basis of performance related metrics such as total number of visits, transactions, revenue etc
- Analyses user activity on the site including areas (pages) from where users seem to have bounced off
- Provides detailed reports that can help to improve digital marketing strategies like social media campaigns, besides aiming at better targeting of search engine rankings, and conversions
An important aspect of Google Analytics related to online advertising is called Google AdWords, which offers bespoke services such as Pay Per Click (PPC) and Cost Per Acquisition (CPA). Known to be the highest revenue earner for Google, this paid marketing service is used by advertisers and web marketers to display product listings, advertising copies, and video content high on Google SERPs.
However, the only area where Google Analytics lags is in providing the description of real time data in its entirety, which it does to some extent but with a few data points only.
Kissmetrics: Unlike Google Analytics, Kissmetrics provides comprehensive web related data about user activity on a real time basis. It shows individual user activity over a period of time spanning across devices, locations and time. It gives an insight into individuals or specific user groups, and is specially useful for mobile apps and ecommerce sites. And yes, it doesn’t come free with charges starting from $200 per month.
Clicky: The tool provides comprehensive real time data on individual user activity, search rankings, and video analytics. Interestingly, it provides a heatmap traction of users in real time through an online widget. The best part is that it is free up to 3000 daily page views but charges $19.99 per month beyond that.
The tool alerts you as well when your site goes offline. It does so by keeping a tab on your site from five different locations worldwide. Thus, it helps companies to work towards real time optimization of business data to arrive at better outcomes.
Woopra: This real time analytics tool has a unique live chat feature that allows site owners or web marketers to chat with users visiting the site. This feature can give important insights about a site from a user’s perspective and helps to improve shortcomings (if any).
Also, by using the tool’s AppConnect feature you can connect with other platforms like Salesforce, WordPress, HubSpot, MailChimp etc. It is available in both free (up to 30,000 actions per month) and paid versions (up to $1,199.95 per month and higher with advanced enterprise level features.)
FoxMetrics: Available at $299 per month, the site provides actionable information to web owners relating to users’ browsing behaviour over a period of time including making sales. By using the tool you can even follow up with customers who have abandoned shopping carts through targeted emails and offers. The tool allows you to create user surveys and feedback forms apart from directing the users to pages that suit them better.
Web analytics tools can provide important insights into user traffic, various facets related to it, and its changing dynamics. However, such information won’t be of any use unless suitable action is taken towards improving the user experience and thereby possible conversions. In the article, top 5 web analytics tools have been discussed in terms of their usage in digital marketing. Readers are invited to give their comments on the same.