Web Analytics tracking choices with advantages and disadvantages
Basic Web Analytics tools usually fall into one of two categories:
- Web server log file based
Both have advantages and disadvantages.
So what to do? Many organizations which have adopted one Web Analytics solution or another underutilize the tools due to a lack of trained personnel. A lack of training also leads to less then optimal implementation – leading to poor and misleading data quality. Thus, the first priority should be for internal staff to get up to speed with Web Analytics basics before committing to one solution or another.
In general, open source tools are more primitive than their commercial counterparts. Commercial tools offer more intuitive reports and add functionality such as click stream analysis and data drill down capabilities. Yet sometimes the free tools provide more detail than commercial tools. In marketing, including search engine optimization activities, referral information is very important. Some solutions are limited to providing domain level referrer information – AWStats offers page level URL referrer reporting.
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