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NuConomy: Next-gen web analytics

Web analytics is an increasingly important metric for web publishers. It used to just be about tracking how many visitors you get and how many pages they view. Technology has improved so that you can now track site entry points, popular keywords, specific post metrics, out-bound clicks, nationality of your visitors and more. The problem is, to actually get that data into something useful, you usually have to dedicate a bunch of time analyzing statistics or you have to pay for an expensive commericial analytics package. Today, NuConomy is officially launching its free web analytics platform, NuConomy Studio, designed to meet both of those challenges.

The platform that NuConomy will most likely be compared to is Google Analytics, because both are free and both offer easy integration into various web platforms. In its scope, however, NuConomy Studio is much more akin to Omniture, but without the hefty licensing fee that pretty much excludes all but the biggest sites from taking advantage of its enhanced metrics.

For instance, most analytics programs can't monitor interaction with JavaScript (AJAX) or Flash elements. So you can't get a metric on how frequently that YouTube video is played (or which video is most popular). NuConomy can track AJAX, Flash and Silverlight and then show you what elements (or videos) were most popular. With YouTube videos, you can even find out how visitors are watching the videos before stopping or going to another page. So if you're a VBlogger, you can better pinpoint what is working and what isn't.

On my personal site, I run Google Analytics and Shaun Inman's Mint (Mint provides me with real-time tracking). I installed the NuConomy Insights WordPress plugin (plugins are also available for Movable Type, Community Server and dasBlog, or it can be custom-integrated into your own CMS) on Friday and let it run over the weekend. Only having three full days of data points doesn't really show off everything NuConomy can do, but already, I can better visualize what type of content is most popular, by viewing what tags are contributing the most activity on my blog:

With Google Analytics, I would just have a list of popular pages. You get the raw data in NuConomy as well, but you can pull up specifics of say, "unique visitors from the United Kingdom who submitted a comment" and get the data back in a graph or chart.

For publishers of medium to large sites, the way NuConomy tracks user engagement is really powerful. In addition to launching the analytics platform, NuConomy is also launching a two-way API that will dynamically change sites based on metrics and insights, so you can change what ads or specific content is shown, depending on the visitor. So registered users might see one type of ad graphic, and new users see something else.

NuConomy is free and available now. If you are running WordPress or one of the other platforms with a plugin, I highly suggest downloading and giving it a go. The amount of information you can get back is so much better than Google Analytics, it isn't even funny.

Tags: analytics, nuconomy, stats, web analytics, web stats, WebAnalytics, WebStats