Google Analytics is a free, convenient and powerful resource for tracking highly important details of one’s website. Whether the site owner is a blogger or CEO of a top-rated company, he/she can thoroughly benefit from the tools within this software. Google Analytics focuses on gathering and tracking various bits of information about a website, from who views the page to where they come from and even what they do while on the website.
By studying this information in a variety of different ways, owners can implement changes to gain unique hits and keep visitors coming back until they convert.
Reasons to Seek an Alternative to Google Analytics
Some reasons for leaving Google Analytics may include data limits, pricing for premium services, report updating delay, and difficult interface with complicated language makes interpretation difficult.
- Data Limits – Standard (free) account limit is 10 million hits per month, Premium account is 1 billion hits per month.
- Premium Service Pricing – $150,000 annual flat fee is a steep price to pay; some users prefer a cheaper option.
- Data Collection and Reporting Delays – Google shows real time data of site visitors, referral websites, and geographical data. The collection and reporting system has a delay of 24 hours for Standard users and 4 hours for Premium users for data such as conversions.
- Interface and Language – Unless the site owner is a real techie, many terms in the interface will be foreign and difficult to understand. It takes a while to learn the system and figure out exactly what each aspect does. This difficulty causes problems for site owners needing to make an immediate turn around to their site.
What Alternative Analytics Software is Available?
If a website owner is not completely satisfied with Google Analytics for whatever reason, some comparable software and services provide much of the same data.
Reinvigorate alternative to Google providing many of the same features and a few additional ones. Reinvigorate offers real-time page analysis, a desktop program called Snoop that allows site owners to receive instant notification of all activity on the site, a NameTags feature providing user names and visit data for hits, and heatmaps showing where people actually click on the page.
CDN codes allow for faster loading for visitors. Other features include referral tracking, map view of hits with regions and time zones, granular graphs, and easy installation (small code and WordPress plugin). Ease of use and a free option make this a perfect alternative service.
KISSmetrics is a more expensive analytics alternative that provides a much more detailed look at the site visitor’s actions. All plans start with a ‘no credit card required’ 14-day free trial. From there the plans start at $150 per month paid annually. The Starter package allows 500,000 events, or about 50,000 unique visitors. Events are actions taken during a visit.
Features include setup help, unlimited funnel, cohort, and retention reports, and unlimited customer profiles and group contact lists. Features that are more technical include unlimited A/B Split Tests, unlimited Sandboxes, no-limit conversion periods, real time data debugger, multi and cross platform or device support, data export, and email support. The true benefit to this analytics tool is getting to know the visitors and seeing their actions both before and after sign up. This allows a site owner to learn to attract similar customers leading to higher conversion rates and more sales.
FoxMetrics is another Google Analytics alternative providing a wide range of options under a variety of pricing packages. Again, you get a ‘no credit card required’ 14-day free trial, and packages start at just $20 for a Small package with 100,000 Requests, email support, unlimited applications, unlimited users, error tracking, and custom events.
Requests are the same as events, any action a visitor takes while using a website or application. In addition to individual customer tracking, a site owner also receives basic analytics information to get the whole picture and monitor campaigns.
Mint is a simple alternative to Analytics. The setup is simple, the interface is simple, and report generating is simple. Rather than paying a monthly fee, users pay a one-time $30 licensing fee per site to download and use the current version with updates available free or at a low cost.
Features include all basic data about visitors including page view, unique viewers, returning viewers, referral website information, filtering base on search terms, recently visited pages, and most visited content, and browser information. Extra features include Bird Feeder, a subscription pattern viewer for your feeds, and Real Estate, shows visitor’s browser height and width so site owner can better plan where to place content.
Open Web Analytics
Open Web Analytics is an open source alternative to Google Analytics. It has the same look and feel as Google and provides many of the same features. A main benefit is this service is free as owners use it under the GPL v2 License. There are no logging limits and one can track an unlimited number of websites. It tracks site usage statistics, conversion statistics, and events.
Site owners must download and install the software onto their server themselves. Click heatmaps, mouse movement record and playback, and DOM click tracking are three features included you will not find with Google. WordPress and MediaWiki instrumentation is built-in and extensive. This information provided by OWA website as compared to May 2011 Google Analytics and may not be completely accurate at this time depending on the new features Google has released.
Clicky is a free, easy-to-use alternative analytics tool with additional features available at various price points. The free account offers common features such as content, search, referral tracking, and individual user events tracking.
Site owners also get real time data, basic segmenting in graphs, a customizable dashboard, API access, RSS feeds, and Widgets. Premium features, including heatmaps, uptime monitoring, download tracking, engagement reports, and data export, are available at the Pro Plus level or higher. Pro packages are $9.99 per month, Pro Plus is $14.99, Pro Platinum is $19.99, and Custom packages vary depending on options.
Mixpanel is a Google alternative providing event analytics and management. Businesses and website owners are turning to people management more and more as a way to build the best customer base and raise conversion rates. Seeing what customers do on a website, rather than just how many times they visit or where they come from, provides a much better picture of the customers’ needs.
One of the best features of Mixpanel is the data segmentation process. Site owners choose options specific to the questions they want to answer rather than writing complicated code. At the free level, a site owner gets 25,000 data points per month. There is an added bonus of 175,000 data points if the owner becomes a Mixpanel partner by adding the widget to the footer of their website.
Chartbeat is a pay-as-you-go Google Analytics alternative, meaning site owners never sign a contract and can cancel anytime. Chartbeat is hip and rolling with the new age data trends by showing site owners real time stats so they can react to what is going on right now and see instant results.
Website monitoring of individual visitor events rather than page views providing a complete look into what works and what does not. Upon signing up, website owners receive a free 30-day trial during which they can cancel without ever being charged. Users see where traffic comes from, what visitors are doing, how long they have been doing it, and how far down the page they scrolled. These pieces of information come in an easily digestible form without owners having to look at all the numbers and figure it out themselves.
Plans start at just $9.95 per month after the free trial. The Standard level pricing includes 1,000 concurrent (active page views at any given time), 5 sites, and 1 additional login with standard support. Setup is also extremely easy, requiring site owners to copy only 2 HTML lines of code and paste them to their site to see real time stats.
Adobe Web Analytics
Adobe Web Analytics is a Google Analytics alternative that gives website owners a more thorough look at their total marketing plan and how their customers are reacting to it. Analysis tools allow users to see and react on key performance indicators by viewing customer loyalty and purchasing metrics in a useful way.
Advanced data segmentation give owners a better look at real time performance of their marketing campaigns. Ad hoc analysis allows multidimensional analysis of the website, advanced and enhanced conversion and traffic reporting, and multiple reports layed out side by side for easy viewing and comparison. Other features include social media integration, tag management for organization, and a data workbench that gives an owner a 360-view of customer habits through online and offline marketing channel analysis. Owners will need to contact Adobe for pricing based on their site’s needs.
Inspectlet provide site owners a visitor oriented analytics alternative with brand new technology – recordings of site use through the eyes of the visitor. The free plan allows 100 session recordings giving site owners a never-before-seen view of their site from the visitor’s perspective. Using this data, owners can raise conversion rates by focusing sales copy and tasks in the areas visitors see most often.
Mouse-click heatmaps, Eye-tracking heatmaps, scroll heatmaps, and advanced dynamic site compatibility are all included with the free plan. Other plans, starting at just $39.99, include even deeper data and many more recorded data options.
What is Your Favorite Analytics Software?
Google Analytics may be one of the best resources on the market but there are other notable analytics software that are worth a second look. While, it is always useful to have as much information about your website and visitors, it is not advisable to use several analytics on a single site to avoid overloading it.
Which software or services have you tried? Are there others you feel should have made our list? Which analytics features or statistics help your website the most?