September 28, 2022

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Yahoo! Plays the Numbers

Yahoo! Plays the Numbers

The much speculated launch of Yahoo! Web Analytics came with a posting on the Internet monster’s development blog recently.

When Yahoo! purchased IndexTools in May, the analytics community expected a new free analytics tool, similar to Google Analytics. Instead, Yahoo! appears to be pressing their advantage with Yahoo! Pipes that allows users the ability to create “pipes” between web sources to, according to their web site, “aggregate, manipulate, and mashup content from around the web.” This will help their existing developer network extend the product even further.

According to Yahoo!, they will launch with several additional features beyond any other web analytics tool. First, they will provide real-time analytics. This feature generally costs a lot more from analytics companies, if it is even available.

Second, they are storing raw data rather than aggregated data. This is potentially huge for companies with web analysts who have their expensive web tools, only to have to put it into another database (or Excel or Access) to determine specific behavior patterns and scenarios. Combined with Pipes, companies should be able to create custom applications that measure company specific data.

Third, drag and drop features will make it easy to “quickly build reports with simple custom report wizards, and to create ad hoc scenarios to answer your specific business questions… ”

Campaign management, including CPC (cost per click), ROI and even real-time segmentation will all be available on the initial rollout.

Now for the slap of reality.

This is based on adding JavaScript to a page. Since most cell phones don’t support JavaScript tagging well, this tool may not be a good way to measure cell traffic. Also unsure is its ability to measure user engagement on social media sites. My guess is their development community could have something ready in the near future.

Yahoo! Web Analytics will be rolled out to “a wide range of Yahoo!’s customers, partners, developers and advertisers in stages throughout the rest of 2008 and into 2009.” Those with Merchant Solutions or a Y! Store merchant account will also have access.

There was no discussion of fees or timetables for others, but they do have my interest. And that is saying something.

Wayne Kurtzman is a senior marketing analyst who loves the shiny toys of technology and online communities. Wayne also is active at the international level of Destination ImagiNation, a not-for-profit organization that fosters teamwork, innovation and creative problem solving skills in students from kindergarten through college.

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