Google Analytics is a very helpful tool to help you measure the fruits of your efforts to optimize your websites. It helps you see the unseen. You cannot see the traffic to your website and what they do on your website, which parts of it they like and which parts don’t serve the purpose without the help of an analytics tool. To help you know these, Google Analytics has various features which convert traffic data into meaningful information which will help you in making decisions regarding your optimization strategies. Moreover, it is 100% free, which is yet another reason to use Google Analytics.
It is a tool from the very own company who we are trying to impress, so, the tool must be able to help us more. Google Analytics is being used by a majority of the SEO folks for numerous reasons like these. Let’s examine the other side of the coin. There are reasons why using Google Analytics isn’t that helpful as you assume it to be. One simple reason could be there are better alternatives available. If you would like to get a little deeper into it, I would like to point out two more reasons why using it couldn’t be as helpful.
- Google Analytics doesn’t measure the time spent by the visitor on your website if they don’t perform any action, like page loading, mouse-clicks, and so on. Therefore, many of the visitors are said to have spent 0 seconds on your website, while actually they might have spent more time and used your website.
- Google watches your link building strategies. There’s nothing that goes unnoticed by Google if you use Google Analytics for your website. Therefore, when they start breaking the links you have built, you will have no other option to save your website’s page rank.
These are the reasons why you should look for an alternative to it, today. Let me introduce you to some of the best alternatives available in the market.
Clicky is a simple tool which gives information in bite-sized chunks. If the complexity of Google Analytics confuses you, Clicky is the way to go. Another point to be noted is that Clickygives you certain information regarding to the visitor levels that Google Analytics won’t reveal to you. You get useful click stream data to help you improvise your website. Many website owners won’t want all the features of Google Analytics. Clicky is the best tool in such scenarios. You can get it for free for up to 3000 page views, while the basic paid package will cost you a mere $5 every month.
FoxMetrics helps you track the events happening on your website that are not traced by other tools. The information provided by it is very useful in making decisions regarding the personalization of your website. There is a need to give every visitor a different experience based on what they come for. For example, if the visitors search for deals on your website and leave without signing up for one, you could make the website pop up a small window which asks them to sign up for receiving notifications about new deals. FoxMetrics has an API that helps you learn about software installations, media views, newsletter downloads, etc., which will help you make your website more responsive to visitors’ needs. You get up to 25,000 events for free after which you can go in for a basic package starting from $10 a month.
3# Log File Analysis
This is an important tool to consider especially if you are already collecting user behavior information in the form of log files. The log files thus collected have a lot of valuable information regarding visitor behavior on your websites. However, you will need a tool that can help you mine that data and process it into meaningful information. The most popular tool is AWStats and you might also consider Webalizer to do it for you. These are tools that aren’t controlled by a third-party. You download these software to your PC and start analyzing user traffic without the help of another company that can have access to your information. This is a safer way compared to the other tools because the information can’t be accessed by other companies.
4# Open Web Analytics
You must seriously consider using Open Web Analytics if you are looking for a tool that isn’t controlled by a third-party. It isn’t much different from Google Analytics, but it has one feature that will amaze you. It tracks mouse movements over your website and also visual heatmaps to generate information that tells you which part of the website is being used most. It is the contribution to the SEO world from the Open Source community. It is a downloadable program which will not communicate your information to a third party. Therefore, you gain more control and the synthesis of data happens without anyone else knowing about it.
Mixpanel is the best tool when it comes to the handling of conversion funnels. Its super cool feature is that, it can retroactively create and analyze funnels. While measuring user behavior on your websites is important, it is more important to know how often they visit and why. Mixpanel can track the frequency of the visits so that you can know what brings them to your website and enhance those parts of it and also optimize the other parts of your website to attract more traffic. You can use it to track up to 25,000 data points for free and allowing them to place a footer link will let you track up to 200,000 data points without spending a penny. You will not have to subscribe to a paid package to test the usefulness of this tool.
These are some of the top alternatives to Google Analytics. Each of these tools specializes in a specific area and so you can choose the tool that will best cater to your needs. To choose the best tool for you, decide your goal for analysis clearly and choose the tool that offers you that functionality.
Author Bio:- Kathryn Smith is a tech and entertainment blogger. She identifies various free and discounted stuff like the couponcode2013, deals and offers. She also regularly contributes her findings related to internet marketing, blogging,and other technical stuff.