Stats are really an essential item that all Professional bloggers must have, if you haven’t got good stats you are flying blind. Here is the results roundup of our web stats package reviews.
First of I have to say I was quite surprised with these reviews. In the back of my mind I was worried the results would be a foregone conclusion. I mean, Google, a hugely influential company by anyone’s measure, had bought Urchin, a very mature product. This product had been through the real hardcore use and been depended on by thousands of users for their statistics. It should have been near perfect.
I knew not to write off the others. StatCounter and SiteMeter had been around for years and years. Many many bloggers use those services. By now they should have been well up to the job in hand. And the new guys on the block were aimed squarely at bloggers, Mint and MyBlogLog. Mint was so hyped it was either going to be great or a great disappointment.
After I started writing up the reviews an invitation arrived for MeasureMap, so new it isn’t even released yet. I thought long and hard over that. Should I compare a product still in development with services that have been around a while? In the end I need not have worried, MeasureMap won. They just slipped into first place but they did win.
- Google Analytics
Poor MyBlogLog. Perhaps I was being unfair even including it but while link stats are useful and interesting, you can get those same stats as part of some of the others so why have a standalone service? The service isn’t very useful for anything else.
MeasureMap came top just edging out Google Analytics for two main reasons. One it is purely aimed at bloggers so services us very well. The second reason is Google Analytics is harder to use. Not by a great deal but enough to make it less of a tool you would want to visit every day. The lag on Google and the fact that MeasureMap will have API access means Google must come second.
Talking of API, Mint was pushed into third place because of the third party “Pepper” plugins to Mint that take it from being good enough to truly useful. An inspired addition that the others must look into seriously.
It wouldn’t take a lot for StatCounter and SiteMeter to overtake Mint or even challenge the top two. Perhaps it would take some investment and some really good UI work but it is achievable. What they do need to worry about though is the fact that the top two are better AND free.