Google Universal Analytics allows you to research almost everything you want to know about the visitors to your website. You know where they live, and how they got to your site, how long they’re staying, and whether or not they buy something. But if you’re just using Google UA for visitor tracking and the stray A/B test of a new website modification, you’re not taking full advantage of web analytics.
Even though Google has improved the features of its own analytics software, it’s worth learning about the variety of analytical tools that are out there. Here is a brief guide to five alternatives to the dominant player in the web analytics game.
If Google is the free, but complicated analytics powerhouse, Adobe Marketing Cloud is its paid, but full-featured counterpart, matching the company’s experience in design software with analytic tools that can measure all aspects of the user experience. After purchasing other companies, including Omniture, Adobe has simplified its offerings into five categories— Social, Analytics, Targeting, Experience Manager, and Media Optimizer.
Like Adobe’s offering, Salesforce’s marketing cloud is made for the high-end user who isn’t interested in coding their own solutions, but wants results. Salesforce’s solution focuses on tracking social media, and integrates analytics into a package that includes social media marketing and engagement.
If you want to use an open source solution for web analytics, AW Stats is worth considering. While using the software requires a steeper learning curve than some of the other ready-made services, you’ll have more control over the data you collect.
HubSpot focuses on what they call “inbound marketing,” where a customer comes to your site in search of useful information. The company has long argued that this demand-driven marketing is more valuable than traditional “outbound marketing,” like advertising. By integrating analytics into a marketing system, HubSpot helps you find customers by focusing on their needs. By shaping your offerings to attract and keep customers, you’ll be able to more effectively convert visitors into sales opportunities.
If you need live information about who’s visiting your website, Clicky is a great service to use. If you have more than one million page views monthly, you’ll have to pay a small fee, but otherwise it’s free. If you’re just getting started with web analytics, Clicky will give you a good sense of the power of these tools.
Web analytics is a powerful, and essential, tool for any web site interested in attracting more visitors and capitalizing on their interest. While Google UA remains the top dog, there are a number of paid and free services out there that can help you grow your business.
Need web hosting with exceptional customer service?
Check out all our hosting plans here.