ClickZ is working towards coining a new term, Convergence Analytics, and so in writing this post, I guess I’m helping with that process. Besides sounding cool, it does nicely summarize what we’ve been doing the hard way for the past few years: joining data from various analytics tools into a single tool. Of course now, the tools we’re using are more savvy and accept data from other sources and that is what is enabling this convergence of data and data analytics. Google Analytics, SiteCatalyst, Webtrends, etc. are able to accept external data and join it with the ‘native’ data captured by the tool and process all the data together to formulate reports. As one of my business colleagues always mutters… ‘there’s never been a better time to be alive… (or a data analyst) with all this innovation around us!”
More to come on this topic – its just going to get better!
Brian Clifton’s Measuring Success blog is full of good posts. The blog complements his book, now in its 3rd edition. The first post I spotted was a detailed listing of the limitations of the non-paid public version of Google Analytics. This kind of info is valuable for those who need to size a web analytics solution for a larger site. Most normal or low-traffic websites would never reach these limits. Sizing is a perfect segue into the next post I found interesting: “Should You Pay $150,000 for your web analytics tool?” This post provides some great guidelines, such as not paying for web analytics unless the site is generating $1million in annual revenue at minimum. I’d never heard a number like that before, but I’ve never claimed to be a P&L expert either.
These two posts are great for making you think about what you’re really trying to accomplish with your analytics; I hope you’ll take a few moments to read through them.
Looking to determine if your site is mobile-friendly? The W3C has a nice tool just for this purpose, their mobile validator. Give it the URL of a page or site you’d like to check out, and it will provide a detailed report which can help you gauge how the mobile experience will be for that site. Try it on a site you like – you may be surprised at the results returned!
One of the most frustrating details with Google Analytics and its ever-changing features is dealing with the sad ‘not provided’ listing in Keywords reports. Here’s a couple of nicely detailed blog posts which can help you regain some insight into which pages of your site get this ‘unidentified’ traffic, and therefore get you some ‘intel’ into visitor interest/intent.
First helpful ‘not provided’ post at Custom Report Sharing for Google Analytics
Read that post and you’ll find this one at eConsultancy.
Enjoy and best of luck unraveling these mysteries!
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With each day that passes, we’re getting closer to seeing a new offering from Google, which they are calling Universal Analytics. This is a progression of Google Analytics and Google Analytics Premium which will allow more seamless tracking of visitors across multiple devices using a single, simpler visitor id (vid) cookie. It will also provide a mechanism for table lookups (already a long-time feature in paid offerings such as Webtrends or SiteCatalyst).
This is all great news for marketers and other analysts going through web traffic data, but what about for individuals? I’m not yet sure how the vid will jump between the various devices used by a single person. This tracking capability may turn into a playground or battleground for those concerned with privacy.
The Google Analytics blog GA Tip of the Day will email a new tip to your inbox daily. It’s a good way to remember to look at your analytics daily if you aren’t already.
I just found this post so I haven’t tried the tactics explained, but the explanations of the mechanics of bounce rate are so useful I have to pass along the link. What the author is demonstrating is that Google Analytics out of the box has little way to calculate time on site without some tweaking. So if visitors stay on page for 15 minutes, GA may guess the visitor spent no time on the site at all because only one page view was logged. This could have big implications for news or blog sites where many visitors only view a single page, scanning headlines, etc. I hope to experiment with these tweaks soon – let me know if you do the same.
Need to monitor your social stats on major platforms such as Twitter and Facebook? Try TwentyFeet – it is free for personal use and pricing is nominal for larger accounts. Another social media monitoring tool to try out is Addict-o-matic. It works a lot like SocialMention, but I’m not sure how long SocialMention will last. Does anyone know what’s going on with it? It does continue to function, but Alerts which should have been working ‘last week’ have been down a couple years now, it seems. I’d love to know the back story on SocialMention.
Things had been quiet over at the Webtrends Outsider blog, but not now – they’ve got big news to report. It is now possible to do little (1-3 day) data rollbacks with their hosted web analytics product which will allow users to see the effects of newly added report configurations faster than waiting for the next update.