The fall season has seen its share of new releases from both new and old analytics vendors. A common thread among all is the emphasis on providing a call to action that is based on the data, but doesn’t require “hands on” analysis of the data. This is a trend that is changing the nature of web analytics product development, the use of analytics within organizations and how the role of web analytics professionals will be defined.Two of the newer services I learned about recently exemplify this real time, “hands off” call to action approach…DemandBase and SeeWhy.
DemandBase takes IP addresses and then resolves them against a group of publicly-available databases that enrich the data with company name, industry type, specific address location, # of employees at each location and names and titles of executives and managers. DemandBase uses sources such as Hoovers, EDGAR, B2B publication subscriber data and D&B data to add to the standard method of IP address resolution. I think it’s an interesting approach …just some fairly straightforward enhancement of IP data with business information that sales and marketing folks use every day to make business decisions. Customers who I’ve spoken to are seeing the value initially as a sales lead tool…qualifying companies who’ve visited the site more than once and looking at particular content pages with frequency. Then they make inbound sales calls. One customer I spoke to is starting to play with the DemandBase data and match it up with their Omniture analytics. It’s a bit of a sandbox project right now, but they’re trying to tie the Omniture cookie and IP addresses with the DemandBase data. They’ll then create segments in Omniture based on company size and industry to help them guide content development and re-marketing potential.
Re-marketing is the focus of another relatively new analytics service called SeeWhy. Concentrating on sending a follow up offer to those who abandon shopping carts, SeeWhy provides a service which isn’t new…providing a list of email addresses of those who have abandoned so you can send an offer that brings them back for a sale. I was a bit skeptical when I first looked at SeeWhy because you can already get lists of email addresses of those who have abandoned shopping carts and send follow up emails. The value add in See Why is that you get this information “out of the box.” There’s no need to set up any filters, custom reports or go to a “data warehouse” module to pull the data. The company sends you a list of the abandoning visitors at the end of each business day.
DemandBase and SeeWhy are exploiting key weaknesses in traditional online analytics tools…easy access to actionable data, easy methods of implementation and lower cost point solutions that are meant to answer specific questions. I don’t think either solution eliminates the need for an online analytics tool, but I do think these solutions when used in tandem with free tools like Google Analytics and Yahoo Analytics will further call in to question the relevancy of fee based solutions for complete and comprehensive web channel data analysis.