The 13 Best Analytics Tools to Keep Track of Your Visitors

by on December 28th, 2010 8 comments

In order to be able to accurately measure your website’s performance and analyze the success of your different marketing campaigns, you need a website analytics tool. For the vast majority of websites, especially the ones that receive a handful of daily visitors, or have been launched recently, basic and free tools are typically sufficient. However, if you run a website that needs deep analysis and you want extended functionality, then there are a number of paid options out there as well. Listed below are the top 13 website analytics tools:

1. Google Analytics

A free, widely used, and full featured analytics service. It comes with some great features such as customized reporting, data visualization, AdWords integration, data sharing, and cross channel tracking. Google Analytics is great for small and large websites alike and has a user-friendly and clean interface. The lack of real-time updates is probably the only disadvantage worth mentioning.

2. Piwik

Another free website analytics tool, written in PHP/MySQL. It has great features such as real-time tracking, plug-in architecture, a customizable dashboard, and active developer community and unlike other analytics tools it keeps all the data on your local server, which is a major plus.

3. FireStats

Yet another free and feature-rich tool, ideal for real-time traffic tracking. It comes with recent referrers, browser and OS trees, recent popular pages, IP mapping, hit filtering, multiple user support, and IPV6 support. The tool is lightweight and ideal even for high traffic websites, has WordPress specific features, and supports almost all other popular platforms, including Joomla, Drupal, MediWiki, and Greagarius.

4. Clicky

Initially developed for smaller websites, the latest version comes with features and options that make this tool perfect for sites with up to half a million daily visitors. Clicky is capable of tracking downloads, outbound links, Flash and JavaScript events, conversions, and campaigns. It also comes with customizable dashboard, iPhone version, favorites, alerts, IP tags, IP filters, and data export.

5. StatCounter

Free for websites and blogs that receive up to 250 000 pageloads per month and is highly configurable and feature rich. It offers a summary and highly detailed statistics, daily, weekly, monthly, quarterly, and yearly stats, drill-down data, user magnify tool, entry and exit pages, visitor paths, and keyword analysis. The tool is one of the most accurate invisible counters, which will help you gather and analyze all-important data that pertains to your website.

6. Woopra

A unique, real-time statistic tool, which can keep track of more than forty events, has rich user interface, analyzes traffic patterns and trends, and is capable of managing multiple websites and blogs. It also allows deep data drilling and even permits the webmasters to chat live with their visitors.

7. GoingUp

Provides blog and website owners with unique on-site and off-site analysis, which include user profile data, referring keywords, heat maps, inbound link monitoring, visitors’ map and location, keyword density tool, as well as Alexa and Google Page Rank tracking. The interface is quite rich and the data might take a while to load on slower connections, but the tool is still simple and fun to use.

8.  BlogTracker

Developed by Icerocket this is another completely free invisible tracker, which tracks stats and ranks blogs. It works with JavaScript code, requires registration, and is lightweight, which makes it ideal for small and large sites.

9. Webalizer

A lighting fast analysis program, which is written in C and is the default log tool on many web hosts. It supports numerous languages, customizable reports, IPV4 and IPV6 addresses, and unlimited and partial log sizes.

10. Awstats

Another default log program installed on legion of servers. It offers web, streaming, FTP, and mail statistics and presents them graphically. It can use partial information, works with most web server tools, and is distributed under the GNU General Public License. Number of visits, visits duration, file types, most viewed pages, robots visits, and HTTP errors are only a handful of the features that Awstats comes with.

11. Mint

This paid web analytics tool comes with a once-off $30 price tag. Apart from the usual daily, weekly, monthly, and yearly stats, it tracks referrers, feed subscription patterns, pages, searches, user agents, most popular and recently accessed pages. It also offers full support, including installation and administration, loads quickly, and uses simple graphs.

12. CrazyEgg

Another paid web analytics tool offered in four different payment plans that allow webmasters to track from 10 pages (with the Basic plan) to up to 100 pages (with the Pro plan).  Amongst the features that it sports are page tracking, heat maps, page element analysis, data export, automatically archiving of reports, data sharing, and email and RSS notifications.

13. Adobe Online Marketing Suite (previously Omniture Web Analytics)

This solution is best suited for large online businesses that require detailed analysis, drill-down data, and advanced reporting. It is comprised of three different tools, namely SiteCatalyst, Discover, and DigitalPulse and each one of them helps web administrators and business analysts to make informed decisions after analyzing all the available data.
As you can see there are many great options ranging from free to as much money as you want to spend. Do you have a favorite analytics tool not listed here? Please share it in the comments.