Every good webmaster knows who his audience are, where they come from and what they like to read on his website. He also knows how long they stay on his website, what content they share and how often they come back.
All of this is essential to running an internet business – this knowledge will help you rank better on the search engines, reduce your bounce rate, increase your virality and make your ad space much, much more valuable than it is at the moment.
But how do you obtain such vital information? You ask me, and I tell you 🙂
I have compiled a small list of the five best tools to track your audience, which will help you achieve your goals.
I have arranged the list in no particular order – every tool on this list is equally good and your choice can be based upon personal preference, user-friendliness and so on.
So, without further ado, here are my five best tools for audience tracking:
1) Google Analytics
Google will always be number one, as you will most likely use its search engine as a benchmark for your site. Google’s tool is still free to use and offers many features. There’s also a paid version for big partners, but for bloggers and small business owners, free version is more than enough. But maybe you just don’t like Google. Maybe you don’t like the famously complicated interface that Google Analytics features. Or maybe you just want to double up on tracking tools so you can ensure Google is giving you accurate information.
What I like best about Statcounter is the possibility to track actual human activity in real-time. According to W3Techs, Statcounter is used in three per cent of all websites on the internet, and considering the net’s size, this is a huge deal. Like Google’s tool, Statcounter also offers a free version, but it’s fairly limited so I wouldn’t recommend it. However, with the starting price of $5, it’s extremely cheap for anyone serious about his online business.
Reinvigorate is a unique, real-time web analytics system leveraging some of today’s most advanced open-source technology to give you the best-looking and easiest to use analytics platform available. What I especially like about Reinvigorate is the heat map, which allows you to see where users are clicking across each of your pages. The service also has cheaper beginner packages starting from $10/month, as well as more expensive, Pro accounts.
Chartbeat is the hottest thing on the web today. It uses a free WordPress plugin with which you place the tracking code into your website, and then – bam! Instant, real-time stats for your website, all together in a beautiful web dashboard. My personal favourite. You can log in at any time and see a realtime indication of how much traffic is on your website, where that traffic is coming from, what stories people are reading and how many people are active vs. inactive.
Woopra is specific, as it allows for the creation of detailed behavioural profiles for your users. What better way to know how to retain your viewers than to have an insight into their behaviour patterns, right? Woopra can be easily integrated into WordPress as it comes with a plugin, and it also allows you to discover dead ends inside funnels and track customer retention. Woopra is focused foremost on real-time analytics. Its dashboard looks like something out of the Pentagon, featuring a world map with hotspots indicating your visitors’ locations, top pages visited, and a nicely designed traffic sources infographic.
As with Chartbeat, Woopra allows real-time tracking, as well as weekly reports in forms of an email.