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Web Analytics: Advanced Stats

The analytics market is a crowded space with many players. There are a lot of robust analytics solutions that can track conversions, goals, revenue, expenses, and even allow you to create flexible dashboards. These solutions are not made for the basic sites out there; they are made for sites looking for detailed metrics to make decisions on how to improve things. The two solutions that I am going to cover are: Google Analytics (formally Urchin) and Omniture.
###Google Analytics
Google Analytics is the most robust solution out there for its price, which is FREE. It can track things such as campaign conversions, goals, visitor performance, basic ad a/b testing, and content performance. Google Analytics also has all the features that basic statistic solutions have as well as other features such as a site overlay.

googleanalyticsdashboard Web Analytics: Advanced Stats
Keyword Considerations

googleanalyticskeywordconsiderations Web Analytics: Advanced Stats
Google Analytics is a great free solution that provides flexibility for most sites looking for advanced metrics. On each screen they have options to change the look of the graphs, export reports or even send reports to the printer. These are just some of the basic things that can make Google Analytics useful if you have to make reports on a regular basis. Currently the dashboard is not too flexible, but they do provide options for choosing a dashboard overview based on if you are an executive, marketer or webmaster. Anyone can signup for Google Analytics, but you have to wait to be invited to use it. In most cases you do not have to wait too long to get your invitation, but it is high in demand and based on availability.
###Omniture SiteCatalyst
SiteCatalyst is a very robust solution with a lot of features. SiteCatalyst provides data related to navigation, ecommerce, content, and other detailed visitor information. It also has a pretty flexible dashboard and it is very data intensive. One of the great features that it provides is comparison, which allows you to compare different campaigns and groups to see how they are doing so against each other, so that campaigns can be optimized.

omnitureconversions Web Analytics: Advanced Stats
Search Engines

omnituresearchengines Web Analytics: Advanced Stats
Visitor Path

omniturevisitorpath Web Analytics: Advanced Stats
Overall SiteCatalyst is a great solution if you are looking for more detailed information then what Google Analytics can provide and more flexibility. If you spend a lot of money on online advertisements and are in a competitive industry, SiteCatalyst may be the solution for you. The downside of it is that the pricing for it starts at around $1500 to $2000 a month and it could be more user friendly. If you have a high traffic website, expect to pay a lot more then $2000 a month, but the data that it provides you can really help get the most out of your advertising dollars.
There are a lot of other solutions out there, and they also vary in price. The solutions that are in the middle are similar to Google Analytics. The other expensive solutions such as HBX and WebTrends are similar to Omniture SiteCatalyst. If you are looking for detailed stats and have a low budget then Google Analytics might be the right fit for you, if you can wait to get invited. If you are looking for more robust features such as customizable dashboards and can afford it, then Omniture SiteCatalyst might be right for you.

 Web Analytics: Advanced Stats
Neil Patel is the co-founder of KISSmetrics, an analytics provider that helps companies make better business decisions. Neil also blogs about marketing and entrepreneurship at Quick Sprout.

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13 thoughts on “Web Analytics: Advanced Stats

  1. I’ve been using Webalizer for a few years, and recently signed up for Google Analytics. I found the installation process very easy indeed, and the returns are comprehensive. However the dashboard is frustrating (This is a beta, so fair enough). I really don’t understand the options and I sometimes long for the simplicity and dear old tables of data that Webalizer offers. No doubt as Google rolls this product out a bit further they will tweak the interface for usability, because as you correctly identified this is the one thing that lets the service down as yet.

  2. I feel the same way about the dashboard. It would be great if I could pick which stats show up on it, that way I can see what is most important to me on 1 screen.

  3. Neil, I humbly beg to differ. AwStats is simply so much more up to date and powerful than Webalizer that it blows it away.

  4. Chris, I am not saying Awstats is a worse or better solution then Webalizer. I just feel Awstats does not provide advanced stats such as conversion data which is why it is not listed on this page.

  5. Aurelie, you are right about Google Analytics. There is a fine line of it being basic or advanced, but I placed it under advanced because it provides conversion data and other features used by ecommerce sites.
    I also like WebTrends and HBX, but just like you I am more biased towards one solution.

  6. I just wrote a little on hat seems to be the next big think in anaylitcs – mouse tracking. Once these are released, I’d love to get your take on them.

  7. I’ve used most of these products for web stats and currently use both Google analytics and Clicktracks Pro version for log analysis at a decent traffic commercial site.
    One thing you need to mention is javascript tracking versus log analysis. A program like Google Analytics (formerly Urchin) will NOT track robot visits because it using javascript for tracking purposes and bots don’t use that. This can be a problem when trying to optimize for SEO and making sure the bots are able to access your pages.

  8. This was a interesting read especially with screenshots of Blogbeat and Mint.
    Feedburner has some new feature called Live Hits which give a real time preview of visitors coming to your blog by clicking on Feedburner Feeds.
    You might want to include it in your review.
    Great article.

  9. Google Analytics is a tool created for integration with Google’s Adwords programs. It is fine for 90% of users for 90% of their needs. However, it is not so specific for specialistic needs.
    Take for example HitTail, which tracks specifically weblogs. You want to add HitTail too :)
    Or the stats of feedburner, which are specifically designed for tracking rss-feeds.
    There are also rumors that analytics tracks too many conversions, but i cannot prove that.