Web Analytics Usage: Recent Data on Tools & Tagging

Web analytics landscape: Audience poll in a recent webinar shows Google Analytics at 75% market share, while another webinar highlights the prevalence of sites with multiple analytics tools implemented.

Web Analytics Tool Usage

Mediative (formerly Enquiro) recently presented a webinar called ‘Analytics and Reporting – How to Define Metrics…‘ as part of its B2B Expert Series.  Insightful presentation, as always. During the broadcast, viewers were offered the opportunity to complete a poll and indicate the analytics platform they are using. Here are the results, from January 25, 2011:

Mediative Webinar Web Analytics Market Share

Source: Mediative webinar 'Analytics and Reporting'; Jan. 25, 2011

Not surprisingly, Google Analytics is the dominator, being a widely known and freely available solution. The result is a 75% market share for Google Analytics with this audience. The major paid solutions fall into line pretty much as expected, with Adobe’s Omniture at 10%, Webtrends and 4%, and IBM’s Coremetrics on less that 1% of the sites polled. Red-headed step-child Yahoo! Web Analytics was not offered as an option in the poll, but presumably comprises some portion of the 4% in the ‘Other’ category, along with Unica and…others. A little disturbing to see in this day and age that 6% of the sites of the participants in the poll have no web analytics.

I don’t know the size or composition of this audience, so it’s hard to say how representative this data is. Mediative webinars usually attract an audience in the hundreds, from a fairly broad cross-section of industries and company sizes, so this is probably not too far off the mark for North American business sites in general.

One thing poll respondents weren’t offered was the chance to indicate more than one analytics solution. Would be interesting to see how that option would change results – I suspect it would skew the results even more toward Google Analytics, since it is not unusual for sites with a paid solution in place to use GA as a back-up/alternative.  The ‘Other’ category would probably get a boost as well, especially if people included things like voice of customer or audience measurement tools.

Site Tagging for Web Analytics

Coincidentally, in another webinar on the very same day, Eric Peterson (Web Analytics Demystified) referenced data on the number of sets of tracking tags that companies nowadays typically carry on their sites. This was in a presentation called ‘The Myth of the Universal Tag’, hosted by Josh Manion of Ensighten and also featuring Brandon Bunker (Sony). Lots of thought-provoking info on the value of tag management systems, but the data in question showed that almost 1/2 of the top 100 internet retailers have 3 or more sets of web analytics tags on their sites, and 85% have 2 or more sets. Since these are large, presumably sophisticated sites, they may be expected to have more tracking tags placed on their pages, but the overwhelming extent to which this is happening suggests that it is likely common on smaller sites, as well, which is supported by observation.

ObservePoint, Web Analytics Tagging, Top 100 Internet Retailers

Source: Whitepaper 'When More is Not Better: Page Tags' by Eric Peterson, sponsored by ObservePoint

This data originated from ObservePoint and was previously published in a paper called ‘When More Is Not Better: Page Tags’, written by Eric Peterson and sponsored by ObservePoint.


So a couple of snapshots of the current state of the web analytics landscape: lots of solutions in play, and lots of sites leveraging multiple solutions. No doubt further consolidation will proceed in the industry, although it is likely that new tools will also emerge, so it will be interesting to see how the market share relationships change over time.  Tagging of sites with multiple tools will no doubt continue and possibly expand, so it will be interesting to see how the use of tag management solutions evolves to deal with this proliferation.