CMS Watch Releases Web Analytics Report for 2009
The latest report to come from analyst firm CMS Watch (news, site) is one that will grab the attention of those who want to understand who is visiting their site and what they are doing while they are there. We suppose that includes just about everyone then. Or at least it should.

The CMS Watch Web Analytics Report 2009, is an analysis of 20 web analytics firms against twelve potential use cases. What they found was that mobile and video analytics vendors are offering a variety of solutions to track the usage of video and mobile more closely, but there's still work to be done.

Video Analytics: No Picnic

Traditional analytics vendors can only track if a video has been started, not much else. Tells you something, but you want to know more. You want to know if the entire video was watched, if it was paused, rewound or how long it was viewed.

With some invasive coding in the video, this could probably be done by traditional vendors, but there is another answer. There are new niche vendors for video analytics coming out such as Visible Measures and GlanceGuide who can track this type of activity.

Of course, these new vendors have different approaches to measuring video says CMS Watch contributing analyst Phil Kemelor and some are more complex than others.

Mobile Analytics: Still Pie in the Sky

Another critical market is the mobile user. This user base is becoming much bigger with the release of all the cool new phones and devices and the increasingly mobile workforce. We told you to pay more attention to your mobile content strategy didn't we?

To help you measure mobile usage on your website, new vendors such as AdMob, Amethon, Bango and Mobilytics. Of course the big players have also come to the table with their own mobile analytics solutions this past year -- Omniture, Coremetrics and WebTrends.

What kind of information can you get from these vendors? Reports such as percentage of mobile visitors by screen size, handset manufacturer and browser. Even the mobile device header can give you some useful information. Unfortunately, header info varies by device and personal settings among other things.

As you likely know, the biggest issue with tracking mobile usage today is that not all devices accept cookies and JavaScript (both used to measure traffic) or have them enabled.

Still Inexact Science, But Evolving

CMS Watch says that both video and mobile metrics are very young and inexact practices. Which means, the metrics are here, but take them with a grain of salt because there are still some technical issues to resolve.

“If mobile or video is very important to you today, you may need to use both a niche player and a traditional analytics vendor,” concludes CMS Watch founder Tony Byrne. However, he adds, “In the longer run, it’s hard to know how successfully the niche vendors will fare, as the major analytics players catch up, and new phones come on the market that support JavaScript and cookies.”

Pick up your copy (or a free sample) of the CMS Watch Web Analytics Report 2009, available today and watch CMS Watch closely for a new four-hour online certificate course in Web Analytics Technology which will include mobile and video tracking.

Struggling to make analytics work for you? Check out the 10 Keys to Success with Web Analytics.