Web Analytics Predictions for 2007 and 2008

Web Analytics Predictions for 2007

Remember the web analytics predictions for 2007 made by some of the finest bloggers in our field? Rather than my going on and on about whether I think their predictions were right, I’d prefer for them to follow up on their posts. I would really enjoy reading their comments. :)

But before I put them on the spot, let’s have a look at what I said when Manoj interviewed me in January 2007. I realize I voiced more hopes than predictions.

  • I don’t think the page view will die in 2007, but it will be really, really sick. (Outcome: I think the pageview is still doing really well. Yes, the need for measuring events has increased. However, many websites are still very much built around pages.)
  • Cost per impression will hopefully once and for all have to give way to cost per unique visitor and cost per action. (Outcome: One step was taken, but many remain.)
  • Discussions about engagement metrics will grow in importance since the buzz about social media will continue. (Outcome: Well, they have caused a lot of conversation and WebTrends Score was released.)
  • Web analysts will have to revise the work of SEO firms and educate ad networks and advertisers. (Outcome: I’ve seen SEO consultants introduce the CPA model for SEO projects. That’s one step that could help.)
  • All web design agencies should have to employ web analysts. (Outcome: They still don’t.)

So what did our industry gurus say? Let’s have a quick recap.

Marshall Sponder (2007)

  • Google buys FeedBurner and Quantcast.
  • Google Fatigue starts setting in.
  • Certain Web 2.0 Widgets become very popular in 2007.
  • Online Video continues gain importance and YouTube becomes crucial.
  • Second Life becomes crucial for many businesses.
  • Ultra Mobile PCs begin to replace mobile phones in 2007.

Craig Danuloff (2007)

  • Google will release a major upgrade to Google Analytics.
  • Avinash’s 90/10 rule will become broadly accepted.
  • A new metric – the ROWA – will be born. “Return on Web Analytics”.
  • By the end of the year there will be at least two more analytics consultancies in the U.S.
  • By the end of the year at least major one analytics vendor will demonstrate beta software, or announce the upcoming release of, a completely revitalized web analytics application that isn’t pageview-centric.

Avinash Kaushik (2007)

  • 2007 will be a banner year for Web Analytics education and web analyst salary improvements.
  • We will see increasing sophistication of and availability of “free” web analytics tools in the market.
  • Pay Per Click (sometimes called SEM) analytics will continue to be important but cede mind-share and control to Search Engine Optimization analytics.
  • WebTrends MarketingLab and Omniture’s Discover will release updated versions of their “data warehouses” that will be closer to standard business intelligence data warehouses.
  • More Analysts and Web Decision Makers will realize the futility of torturing clickstream data to get into the heads of their visitors and embrace qualitative measurement options.
  • More website business owners will realize there is this thing called Social Networks and panic when they can’t be measured. Targeted solutions will follow in 2007.

Eric T. Peterson (2007)

  • More companies will realize that without addressing their Web Analytics Business Process they will still under-appreciate the full value of their investment in web analytics.
  • Smart people will stop freaking out about how “Web 2.0” is going to be measured and will begin to develop rational and reasonable models for tracking emerging Internet technologies and business models.
  • Those companies who have deployed sufficiently powerful applications to identify search marketing click-fraud, especially those paying for highly-competitive search terms, may not particularly like what they find.
  • Emetrics San Francisco will be widely proclaimed the “best ever” thanks to the combination of an interstellar line-up of speakers and a location that (finally!) says “Go out at night and PARTY!”
  • The web analytics analyst community will shake again, although not quite the same way it did when Bob Chatham and I both joined Visual Sciences within a month of each other.

Gary Angel (2007)

  • The practice of SEO will change dramatically.
  • Agencies will finally emerge as a significant factor in the web analytics space.
  • The pendulum will swing back – at least a little way – from ASP solutions to internal solutions for web analytics.
  • Tags will get universally lighter.
  • A year from now, when people once again write their predictions, we’ll hear the same laments as always about the lack of productivity in web analytics, the problems with tools not delivering real value and the difficulties in replicating web analytic success.

Anil Batra (2007)

  • There will be a lot more jobs in the web analytics field.
  • There will a lot more bloggers and writers in the web analytics field.
  • Web Analytics won’t be standing alone – Marketers will want 360 view of the customers.
  • Web Analytics will be about taking actions.
  • Only few main behavioral network players will be left and some of the existing ones with poor networks will either go out of business or be sold.

Shane Atchison (2007)

  • It’s a tale of two software vendors, continued. […] Omniture and WebSideStory.
  • Google Analytics will be a significant dark-horse vendor.
  • Innovation will come from third parties.
  • Marketing executives will embrace Web analytics.
  • Marketing execs’ biggest issue will be human capital.
  • Employees will be held accountable for analytics.
  • Optimization will be the hottest trend.
  • Education will be huge.

GA Experts (2007)

  • MS releases “DeepSoft” or whatever they rename Deepmetrix to.
  • 100% advertiser adoption – continued rapid growth in adoption of web analytics tools.
  • The number of mergers and acquisitions will continue to increase.
  • Web analytics terminology will simplify and become more business orientated and less technical.

Predictions for 2008 have been scarce so far, but Judah Phillips has posted some.

  • Google Analytics releases a real API for getting (and perhaps setting) data.
  • HBX Analytics goes away.
  • WebTrends rebrands.

Read Judah’s list in its entirety.