Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Alternatives to Google Analytics




Google Analytics is a great tool. And it’s free, which only adds to the greatness. But let’s explore some alternatives so we know what else is out there. After all, every business has its own unique goals and objectives, and Google Analytics cannot serve them all. There could be many reasons to look at other options. Perhaps a company wants multiple analytics programs. Even though this could get complicated, it can also confirm the data. Maybe you just don’t trust Google. This might sound crazy, but there are definitely companies out there that don’t agree with Google’s service and privacy terms, so they avoid it as much as possible. And lastly, maybe GA just doesn’t cut it and additional functionality is needed. I’ll walk you through three decent alternatives for SMBs that could provide the right analysis to help optimize a company’s website and online business.

Number 1: KISSmetrics

The first thing you see on KISSmetric’s website is this:


 So this company is obviously comparing itself to Google and boldly suggests it does even more. KISSmetrics claims to differentiate itself from GA in the following ways:
·         It helps you to get to know your customers
·         It offers simple design and usability for the most complex businesses
·         It provides actionable analytics and insights

One of the great claims it makes is that it has solutions for any business’ unique needs. If you’re looking for a platform, KISSmetrics provides a 14-day free trial to help you know if it’s right for your business. If you decide to use KISSmetrics, you’ll be paying anywhere from $49 to $499 based on the plan.

Number 2: Coremetrics

Coremetrics claims to have sophisticated analytics that provide businesses with real time insight into how consumers are interacting with their brands online. I’ve never used it personally but I have heard good things. It was recently acquired by IBM and is now one of IBM’s marketing products. Here are a few things it offers that stand out to me:
·         Real-time reporting
·         Easy setup with a unified tag manager infrastructure
·         Integrated social media analytics and reporting
·         Unique, event-driven customer segmentation

There are actually a lot more I could add to the list, but these four were my favorites. Some of the others were similar to features the other platforms have that I mention so I left them out. I’m not sure how much this would cost, but I’m going to assume it would be around the same as KISSmetrics.

Number 3: Hubspot

I saved this for last because I personally like it the most. Hubspot provides all sorts of marketing tools and platforms and one of these is its closed-loop analytics. This platform provides actionable analytics that track the effectiveness of your marketing efforts across various channels. You’ll know how your customers found you, any critical touch points for conversion, which campaigns are most successful, and what actions generate the highest quality leads.

Here are three features that really stick out to me:
·         you can track up to ten competitors
·         you can automate detailed reports
·         you can view industry benchmarks

You can create pretty in-depth reports in Google Analytics, but to my knowledge, you cannot accomplish the other two features I just mentioned, and for these reasons, it would be smart to look at Hubspot’s state-of-the-art analytics tool. There is a tom more I could discuss about Hubspot’s analytics, but I’d rather keep this short and to the point. I’m unsure on the monthly cost of using Hubspot, but I would guess it’s more expensive than the aforementioned.

So there you have it; three more great options for web analytics other than Google Analytics. I did not mention Adobe’s SiteCatalyst or Discover because these are the platforms I currently use at work, and I wanted to explore and learn about other options. But they are also very popular (and very expensive) options. I hope you’ve learned something. Please feel free to mention some other great options in the comments or some other cool features of the ones I have listed.

Refer to the following sites for more info:

KISSmetrics
Coremetrics
Hubspot