web marketing effectiveness

Offsite analytics let you check your competitors’ performance, even if you can’t access their data.

These three website effectiveness tools, combined with Google Analytics can enable you to make changes to user journeys, web content, check how your competitors’ websites are performing and compare to your own websites.

Continued measurement of the effectiveness of your website is a vital part of its day-to-day running. There are a number of metrics that can be used to determine a website’s effectiveness including; the number of visitors to the site, how long visitors stay for on average and the channels that are used to arrive at your website.

Here are some of our favourite tools for measuring the onsite and offsite analytics of your website and your competitors.

SimilarWeb – offsite analytics tool

SimilarWeb is an analytical tool used by companies like Firefox, Fast Web Media and Admeta, aimed at helping businesses understand their competitors by providing insights into any website or mobile app. Simply enter the URL of a website and SimilarWeb will give a detailed overview of that site, looking at various features such as; the website ranking, number of visits per month, traffic sources- including social referrers and similar sites. This data is all available to download into a handy excel file or pdf, making SimilarWeb a brilliant research tool.

SimilarWeb also analyses mobile apps that are available on Android and Apple. It charts the top free, paid and grossing apps and also looks at new apps both free and paid. The tool analyses the traffic from in-store and external sources and looks at popular keywords from in-store and search engine enquiries. This data is useful if you are considering creating a mobile app to supplement your website and business marketing activities.

QuickSprout – offsite analytics tool

Created by the co-founder of CrazyEgg, Hello Bar and KISSmetrics Quicksprout is another tool that helps its users to evaluate their own websites and compare them with their competitors. By entering the URL of their own website and up to three competitors, users can see SEO reports, social media analyses and receive tips on how to improve their webite.

The SEO report looks at any potential error and problems such as page load time, the number of back links and the number of indexed pages. It also shows a list of keywords and how often they are being used. Examples of the recommendations offered by the QuickSprout tool for improving a website’s SEO include; editing the sites meta tags, ways to improve social reach, ways to increase back links and suggestions for incorporating more long tail keywords.

QuickSprout also offers insight into how a website is performing across social media by looking at the number of page shares on each network and showing which pages are most popular on each of the platforms.

Quicksprout is a useful tool for website owners who are looking for simple advice on ways to improve their SEO and quickly compare their site with competitors.

Alexa – offsite analytics tool

Owned by amazon, Alexa describes itself as actionable analytics for the web providing crucial data and telling users what this data means. Alexa gives a site overview, taking into account engagement and demographic data, site comparisons and keyword research.

Alexa also offers traffic source metrics and full SEO audits to help website owners optimise their site and improve usability. Alexa has a range of monthly packages available starting from $9.99 to $799 per month. The higher priced options are more focused towards SEO and provide keyword research, SEO audits and an uptime monitor feature which looks at your site’s uptime and downtime.


Google Analytics – onsite analytics tool

One of the most widely used onsite analytics tools, Google analytics is preferred by many because of the features offered and as it is mainly free to use for sites with up to 5 million page views per month or unlimited page views if your site is attached to a Google Adwords account.

Data can also be downloaded into handy excel, CSV, PDF, email and tab delimited files.

Advantages of Google Analytics

Google’s analytics tool provides users with a way to track their monthly visits, traffic sources, number of page views, average time spent on the site and much more.

Google Analytics looks at traffic patterns and bounce rates, enabling you to identify content that may be driving users away from your site or is simply not being used.

Users are also able to compare their website through the analytics tool with sites in the same industry along with a path monitoring feature that shows visitors journey through the site and their clicking habits.


Disadvantages of Google Analytics

There are some drawbacks to using Google Analytics however with web users now being able to opt out of having their online activity tracked by the tool. Similarly if users have JavaScript or cookies disabled Google Analytics will not be able to collect data from them.

The statistics provided by Google Analytics are not real time figures and it can take up to 24 hours for reports to update with new numbers. The tool also requires its code to be placed on each page that the user wishes to monitor, meaning that some knowledge of html and coding is required for all of its features to be correctly used.

What metrics do you look for when analysing your website’s effectiveness? Tweet us @Evonomie!