Adobe Analytics vs Google Analytics - what's your preference?
I haven't used Adobe Analytics before and am wondering if it's as comprehensive as Google Analytics? Does anyone have an opinion about the two of these?
Good question. With any web analytics solution, the level of comprehensiveness often is based on the quality of the implementation. The more work you put into identifying the business requirements and planning the architecture of the implementation, the better, and more comprehensive, the data will be.
In terms of the similarities, both offer a similar set of standard reports you would expect around traffic and content. There is some difference in eCommerce reports as SiteCatalyst offered a number of standard Events out-of-the-box. However, Google’s Enhanced Ecommerce has closed the gap here and added some very nice reports.
Additionally, both have the ability to build advanced segments, create goals, and leverage other variables for additional measurement. Not including Custom Variables, which is being deprecated, Google offers Event tracking as well as Custom Dimensions. Custom Dimensions are based on a scope that you define and allow for metrics to be broken down for deeper analysis. Similar to Google Events, SiteCatalyst has traffic variables called sProps which are often used as ‘counting’ variables to show how often a value fires. SiteCatalyst also has conversion variables known as eVars which, like Google’s Custom Dimensions, allow you to break down various metrics. Without getting too deep into the details, eVars offer a lot of potential for customization based on the allocation given to the variable, the scope, the type, if merchandising is enabled, if there is binding. And, just as Google Analytics has Goals, SiteCatalyst has Events. Both are set when a user takes an action of a website (e.g. button click or page view).
Adobe also offers some add-on tools (some free some at additional cost) such as Ad Hoc Analysis and Data Warehouse, which allow for more flexible report building and data export. Ad Hoc Analysis is especially powerful in allowing for custom fall-out, user-flow, and conversion funnel reports.
While folks can get into the weeds when arguing for the tool they prefer, I think most would agree that they are comparable.
Dir. of Measurement and Analytics
I'll just second what Rich said, he gave an excellent overview of the two tools. Our team works closely with both Adobe and GA (and we resell GA Premium). Ad-hoc in AA is extraordinary for custom analysis, but GA really holds its own now on many fronts and probably excels in several areas like attribution, segmentation, easy of use, etc.
I think it comes down to personal preference. I cut my teeth on GA so it's my preference, but others have the opposite background. The important thing is not the paint but the artist. :-)
COO - Vertical Nerve