You are probably spending a lot of effort and money on your website, but do you know if your efforts are paying off?
Information is power.
Google Analytics remains the most popular analytics tool around, but it’s not your only option. There are many other tools that can help you depending on your needs and priorities. Many tools function as a supplement to Google’s already robust offerings, allowing you to see things from different perspectives, and, at the very least, confirm what you’re seeing through an independent set of numbers.
Following is a short list of some powerful analytics tools that you might not know about:
Statcounter works like Google Analytics. By inserting a small piece of code on your site’s pages the system will track visits and give you access to a variety of comprehensive reports.
Statcounter provides real-time web analysis that tracks visitor activity, measures ROI, and helps you to identify new markets. It is effective for monitoring patterns and behaviors. Overall, it gives you a comprehensive insight into how visitors are using your site.
Statcounter presents the data in a clear and actionable manner. Even those who don’t have a lot of experience with web analytics will easily understand the information presented.
A free account only offers analysis of the 500 most recent page views, but paid options start at €4 per month and 50,000 page views.
Piwik is often compared to Google Analytics, but there is one big difference. Piwik analytics can be installed on your web server, meaning that your data doesn’t go through any other server or company. This is a huge benefit for those concerned with privacy.
Piwik will allow you to do just about anything you can do with Google Analytics. Features include a customizable dashboard, event tracking, content tracking, geolocation and more.
Piwik is free open-source software. If you want to install it on your own server, it is free to download and use. There is also a cloud-hosted version (which you can try for free) with monthly plans starting at $7.50.
Overall, if you want to try something similar to Google Analytics, but with tweaked features and increased privacy, Piwik is an excellent alternative.
ClickTale sets itself apart by showing you more about how people use your site once they arrive. It gives you the ability to track and analyze interactions with the help of heat maps and specialized reports. It can also help you understand the overall customer experience, giving you insight into how you can increase conversion rates.
The ClickTale system will actually record the user’s experience on your website. You will be able to see what people are doing, where they are clicking, and their final actions before leaving.
If you want to get a glimpse of the customer experience, then ClickTale is a good option. The information you’ll get from ClickTale is most beneficial when you combine it with data from other analytics solutions.
Open Web Analytics
Open Web Analytics (OWA) is another free, open-source analytics solution. Similar to Piwik, the OWA system is meant to be installed on your server, keeping all of your data private.
With a very impressive list of features, OWA will do everything Google Analytics does plus more. It includes heat mapping and other tracking features as well as all kinds of advanced reporting options. There is also out-of-the-box support for many standard content management systems, like WordPress, for example.
Crazy Egg focuses on heat mapping to show you what works and what doesn’t on your site.
With this tool, you will know what users click, where they came from, how they interact with your website and even which pages they are ignoring completely.
Aside from the heat map view, Crazy Egg also offers a scroll map view which shows you how far visitors are moving down each of your pages. This is an excellent way to determine how much your audience is actually engaging with your content.
Crazy Egg is surprisingly easy and intuitive to use and the system only takes a few minutes to set up.
Combine Tools For Best Results
The best solution for most sites is to combine data from two or more analytics systems. With many free options, it won’t cost you anything more than a small amount of time to set up and determine which ones are going to give you the most useful data.
One of the most powerful combinations is to use a “standard” analytics package like Google Analytics with a system that provides heat map data such as Crazy Egg or OWA. By watching both where your visitors are coming from and how they interact with your site you can gain powerful, actionable insights into what drives conversions for your law firm.