Last updated on July, 23
🏆 Best Web Analytics for August 2021
Would you like to know how your website is performing? Web analytics can help you understand what people are doing on your site. With web analytics, it's easy to find out what works and what doesn't work so that you can improve upon it!
What is web analytics?
Every website has its own sets of numbers and data on their performance. The best way to make sense of these figures is through the use of web analytics. Web analytics measure, collect, analyze, and report data to optimize your website. The data your analytics presents will help you make decisions, so you can consistently improve your website’s engagement.
Why do you need to use web analytics?
Ever wondered why web analytics tools are so in demand? If you’ve put up your website, you can consider web analytics as your best friend. Web analytics are handy, and here are the advantages that you can get from these tools.
Measure Your Traffic
Web analytics can provide you with the necessary data to determine the number of visitors your website gets. Plus, the metrics these tools give you can help you measure your visitors’ behavior. This way, you would know if your audiences like your pages or not. And what’s good about these tools is that the data they gather are all presented in an easy-to-understand format.
Determine Success of Marketing Campaigns
There is a corresponding response that you can get from your viewers for every campaign you post on your website. Web analytics tools can provide you with insights so you’d know if the changes you make on your site were efficient or not. This way, you can tailor your campaigns according to the preferences of your audiences.
No Coding Expertise Needed
Since web analytics are web-related, people often think they need to be a programmer to use them. But, with web analytics services, you can fully generate, customize, and view your reports without the hassle of going through heavy coding. All you need to have is an understanding of what your data means.
Optimize SEO Efforts
If you own a website, you probably know how handy search engine optimization (SEO) efforts are—web analytics can help you with that. By having the right metrics, you would understand your target audiences’ tastes and preferences. And from there, you’ll be able to customize your content according to their needs, helping you become visible on search engine rankings.
Know Your Source of Traffic
Web analytics also lets you determine where your traffic comes from. By knowing where most of your visitors come from, you’d know where you need to be visible the most. This way, your target audience can easily see you, allowing you to drive more people into your website.
Web analytics can be a bit pricey, but investing in one is worth it. If you want to make your online venture successful, these tools can significantly help you. With web analytics, you can better target your audiences, allowing you to stand out against your competitors. Although there are free web analytics tools available all over the internet, it’s best to get all the right tools you need to optimize your pages.
Core features of web analytics
There are tons of web analytics software all over the internet today, and choosing one can be overwhelming. Here’s a list of the core features that the best web analytics services can give you to make things easier for you.
Web analytics is mainly used for tracking metrics, so service providers ensure that users like you have access to all the metrics you need. With metrics, such as bounce rates, engagement rates, conversion rates, etc., you can determine and understand your visitors’ behavior on your site.
You should always be up-to-date on your website’s performance, which is why web analytics guarantee that their data is updated in real-time. This way, you can track your metrics without any delays.
Full Data Ownership
You wouldn’t want your visitors’ data to be mishandled. So web analytics service providers guarantee you that all of the data collected from your website are 100% yours. With this feature, you can ensure that no third parties can access your website, preventing any data breaches from happening.
Reliable Customer Support Services
You may be overwhelmed by the functionalities web analytics tools offer, but don’t fret. The best service providers guarantee that they can assist you whenever you need it. Plus, some software provides training materials that let you understand how you can maximize the use of these tools.
Web analytics can be daunting, which is why some website owners are still reluctant to use it. But web analytics tools can be tailored according to your business needs. You can choose to analyze only your website performance and visitor engagement. This feature is beneficial, especially if you know exactly what your website needs.
Website SEO Boosting
Web SEO analytics are capable of determining the keywords and queries that landed you clicks to your website. They also let you keep an eye on the content that your visitors are looking for on your website. This feature gives you more avenues for future content structuring to compel your target audience to stay longer on your website and improve your conversion rates.
Web analytics provide you with information regarding your visitors’ profile as soon as they enter your website. You can identify specific details about them through this feature, like what led them to click on your site, the content that made them stay or leave your website, etc. This feature allows you to know your visitors’ behavior, so you can create a stream of loyal visitors or even add more traffic.
Do you want to know if your call-to-action (CTA) buttons are effective or not? Then heat maps can help you. Heat maps allow you to determine the areas where your customers click and tap the most on your web pages. Through this feature, you’d know if your marketing efforts are efficient and noticed by your visitors.
Some web analytics offer you A/B testing features. Also known as split or bucket testing, it shows your visitors different versions of your web pages so you’d know which version they liked the most. This way, you’d know which changes are the best options for your website’s optimization.
There are a handful of reports and data that you can generate from your web analytics software. From traffic sources, visitors’ demographics, to the number of page views, name it, you can have it. Web analytics can gather all these reports into different formats and present them into charts and graphs for more precise analysis.
High-Traffic Website Measurement
If you’re expecting heavy traffic from your website, then your web analytics tool should be able to handle all the data it can get. Despite gathering enormous volumes of information, its data should still be accurate and precise no matter what.
Types of web analytics
Knowing and using the right tools is essential for your website’s success. There are several types of web analytics, but they can be categorized into two main types based on the tools that comprise them and how they work.
Off-Site Web Analytics
Off-site web analytics determine if a market exists for your products or services. The tools measure your prospect audience (opportunity), website clickability (visibility), or platforms for discussion (comments) on the internet as a whole. With these, you focus on the larger picture and your website’s value compared to your competitors.
Pro #1: You can use this tool even if you don’t have a website
For instance, you can use this tool to predict if you can establish your online presence while you’re planning to build your site.
Pro #2: Tracking your competitors is convenient with off-site web analytics
You can use this tool to determine the website your visitors go to before and after they enter yours.
Con #1: They provide mostly inferred data
You need to have a large sample to decrease the margin of error presented in your data.
Con #2: It can only be applicable for high-traffic sites
Low-traffic sites have smaller sample sizes that can generate inaccurate data.
On-Site Web Analytics
On-site web analytics provides you with information about your audiences when they are actually on your website. It measures your website’s performance based on your marketing objectives, and if it’s working according to your desired goals. It also assures you if the modifications you made are according to your viewers’ satisfaction.
Pro #1: There are tons of on-site web analytics tools available in the market today.
They provide you with all the information you need to increase your viewers’ engagement.
Pro #2: It can be used for both low and high traffic sites.
Even if your website has fewer visitors, these tools can still provide you with accurate data.
Pro #3: Track your marketing efforts.
These tools can help you determine if your content and campaigns are effective or not through its metrics.
Con #1: Because many tools are being made available in most web analytics, it may be overwhelming to identify what data you need.
Make sure to determine your goals first to prevent a directionless website with a vast amount of data from your web analytics.
Con #2: Some data can be lost as users can prevent tracking their activities by deleting their cookies.
But don’t worry since there’s only a low number of visitors who block or decline cookies.
Who needs web analytics?
Web analytics can give insights to any type of website available on the internet today. But the mountain of data web analytics is even more so valuable to the following groups of people.
eCommerce Store Owners
Recognize the paths of purchase your customers take as soon as they land on your website and the critical points in driving your sales with web analytics. You can even gather information on which items are frequently abandoned by your customers in their carts. With this information, you can launch a marketing strategy that would convince them to click that purchase button.
Online Business Owners
Your enterprise, be it a start-up or a growing company, can benefit from web analytics. With these tools, you can gain data regarding your competitors’ web traffic analytics, ads, content, and keyword strategies to help you make the appropriate business decisions. Plus, these tools can help you build marketing strategies to match your competitors’ content and address their gaps.
Bloggers can monetize their content, but to do that, they need web analytics. Web analytics would help you generate more views on your website by optimizing your blog posts’ content with the keywords you use. Plus, analytics can also help in detecting who your audiences should be.
Freelancers and Professionals
Websites are now used as a form of online resume or portfolio to showcase your particular field and niche expertise. Promote your services with a website and use web analytics to understand where your audience is coming from. You can further market yourself with budget-savvy packages to make your potential clients choose you.
Step-by-step guide on how to use web analytics
Step1: Identify your goals and objectives.
Web analytics provide you with the data of your audience’s behavior, whether your audience lands on your website or not. But, without determining your website’s goals, you would have no clear direction of what to improve or where to go from this data.
Step 2: Select your preferred web analytics software.
Knowing your goals would help you determine the specific web analytics tools you would need to measure the data. Some factors to consider are whether you will go for a free web analytics software or if you would allot a budget for subscribing to a paid one. Your preference would also depend on the features offered by the program.
Step 3: Set up your chosen web analytics on your web site.
Once you have picked the web analytics suitable for you, you can now launch it on your website. This step entails you to create an account, customize your dashboard, the range of data you want your analytics to measure, and the breakdown of various attributes that would lead to a high conversion rate on your web site.
Step 4: Monitor your data.
Keep a steady record of the metrics and data that your web analytics tools have generated. Daily check-ins are helpful in the sense that you would be able to see why there was a sudden increase in web traffic on your website. Long-range data, such as once a month, may help you recognize trends developing or the changes that led to a decrease in web traffic and the like.
Step 5: Make informed decisions.
With the new emerging web analytics tools, you get to access a mountain of data and information. But the most crucial step is to do something with this data to fulfill your initially set goals and objectives. Continuously improve your viewer’s engagement with the changes you choose to implement on your website based on the information you could generate.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Web analytics collects the data they need using ‘tags’ or ‘cookies’ to track users when they end up on your website. It also monitors ‘individual ‘sessions,’ indicating how long they stayed and what their activities are during their stay.
Conversions are the events in your website that landed a successful desired user action. Examples of conversion could be your user spending a specific time on your website, signing up for your email subscription, etc. Conversions can be tracked by setting up the goals and defining the particular event when customizing your analytics tools.
Some of the web analytics are free, and you simply need to make an account. Others have a free trial and would require you to pay a recurring fee per month. There are also available brands that offer a one-time payment upfront to enjoy their services.
Yes, you can, as no web analytics platform can commit complete accuracy in the data extracted, and different tools process some discrepancies in the results. Using more than one web analytics software can be used to harmonize the results you gain from multiple software. But it’s still ideal to choose one software with most of the features you wish to analyze and fix some of the tracking system’s flaws through coding if need be.
Cloud computing is used to render computer system services, such as data storage and computing power over the Internet (the ‘cloud’) without directly managing it. Cloud computing is used for hosting web analytics applications as a form of software as a service (SaaS) app. Most web analytics applications are already set up in cloud hosting services for better performance, extensibility, and flexibility.
As long as your visitors’ browsers enable cookies, web analytics tracking reports won’t be hindered by your URL’s length. Although it is important to note that some browsers cannot handle URLs that are more than 2048 characters so the web page may not even load in the first place. So, some web analytics reports may shorten the URL code’s length, depending on the display options.
Dashboards are interfaces of widgets collection that show you a graphical presentation and a brief overview of the web metrics you value the most. They allow you to monitor the analytics report of different metrics simultaneously, allowing you to visualize and observe trends currently happening on your website. Therefore, dashboards are essential for you to have a good health status report of your website in a single glance.
Segmentation is the process of segregating your data to perceive actionable items. They allow you to pin down the massive lump of data that your web analytics show, into even more specific data you wish to analyze, to answer your website’s particular question. They also make you examine intrinsic trends that could arise in your business and respond accordingly to these trends.
User tracking with web analytics helps not only you as the website owner but also the internet and its users. Web analytics helps improve website interfaces and the building of constructive and relevant content, which would benefit your visitors.
Having many page views is good, but having your viewers do what you wanted them to perform on your website is another thing altogether. Your goals set you up to measure the specific actions that your viewers do on your website. They eventually help you determine the strong (and even the weak) points of your marketing efforts.
There are four different goal categories you can decide from:
Destination - This category is based on your visitors landing on a desired page, such as a ‘thank you’ page or confirmation
screen for signing up or an approval for a download option.
Duration - This category is based on the set amount of time spent on your website.
Pages/Screens - This category is based on a determined number of pages they have visited on your site during a session.
Event - This category is based on your visitor performing a particular set of actions. Examples of this could be watching a video, clicking on an ad, downloading a catalog, etc.
Web analytics metrics is the generic term for quantitative information about your website’s visitors and their website’s activity. Web analytics metrics are often set as thresholds to meet specific goals and are used as key performance indicators (KPI) in businesses. Below are some of the most used examples of web analytics metrics:
a. The bounce rate is the ratio of viewers who landed on your website but promptly left for whatever they may have. A high bounce rate could be due to several factors, such as website interface, content, or long loading time.
b. The page views are based on the number of successful visitors who can load and view a page on your website. Successful viewing includes everything within your content, such as words, images, and features, on your web page.
c. Landing pages are the first web page your viewers would find upon discovering your website. This metric determines the most viewed and popular page of your website.
d. Exit pages are the pages on your website where your viewers often find themselves seeing their way out.
e. The site speed is a metric for examining page timing, the average page loading time, of your website pages.
f. The average session duration measures the average length of time your audience has spent on your website. An increase in average sessions duration can be caused by placing relevant content and allowing your viewers to immediately find what they are looking for when browsing through your website.
g. The average time on page measures our audience’s average length of time on each web page of your website.
h. The total site traffic depends on the number of visitors that arrive on any of your pages.
i. The sources for incoming traffic allows you to determine where your visitors are coming from. Visitors may originate from these sources:
I. Direct visitors - this visitor type arrives at your website by typing in your exact URL in their search engines or browsers.
II. Search visitors - this visitor type comes to your website by search queries and your website being clicked on from search engines (also known as an organic traffic source).
III. Referral visitors - this type of visitor lands on your website after clicking on an ad or blog of your website links or other partnered website that may or may not be affiliated with you.
IV. Social Media - visitors arrive at your website coming from different social media platforms.
j. The value per visit lets you determine how much value you can receive out of every visit from your viewer. It’s the ratio of the number of visits in contrast to the total amount the visit created. This metric can be a little bit tricky to calculate as values are not easily defined.