Web and social media analytics: A data and technology perspective

November 21, 2011

What is Web analytics, and why is it so essential but challenging for today’s businesses?

What is web analytics?

Definition: Web analytics is the measurement, collection, analysis, and reporting of Internet data for the purposes of understanding and optimizing Web usage. (Source: Web Analytics Association)

Why is it important?

  • Today, Web interactions between commercial businesses and their customers take place via e-commerce stores, customer service sites, interactive real-time chat, e-mail, and social media streams. These interactions are as important, if not more so, for a business’s growth as customer touches through traditional voice and bricks-and-mortar channels
  • Web data integrated with other channels provides a better picture of the customer–business relationship and helps in identifying customer trends
  • It is also useful in assessing the effectiveness of marketing campaigns and optimizing marketing spend
  • And it improves the customer experience through faster service, thereby driving business growth and enhancing reputation

What are the challenges?

  • Data volume growth is accelerating, making it cumbersome to capture and analyze Web data
  • Unstructured social media data growth compounds the challenge, particularly as it must be integrated with enterprise structured data
  • Multiple Web interaction platforms (PC, smartphone, tablet) further add to data capture and integration challenges
  • Location and other smartphone sensor-based feeds also increase the complexity of continuous/real-time data capture
  • There is no single tool available to capture and analyze all types of data


Web and social media analytics: A data and technology perspective