Return on investment is always a hot topic when it comes to social media and the first thing that you need to do in terms of calculating it effectively is measuring the effectiveness of the activities you do. We've compiled a list of all the best tools (some free and some paid) covering all the main areas like Facebook, Twitter, the Web, mobile and sentiment analysis. We personally can't find one tool that does the entire job of covering everything, but a mixture of some of the tools on this list will help you fulfill your needs when it comes to social media analytics.
Most of the tools on the list are easy to install - only taking a couple of lines of code added to your website and some are completely standalone. So no matter how complex your campaign or how many platforms it is running on you should be able to find a tool here to help manage your social media analytics and report more effectively on what you are doing.
Mobile Analytics: Yes
Alongside the usual analytic features, CrazyEgg's main attraction is its use of heat and scroll maps. This not only shows what pages your users are viewing, but also which parts they're viewing in particular. Heat maps show which links are clicked on the most, while scroll maps tell you if people are scrolling through the entire page or just jumping from one page to another.
It's best to use CrazyEgg as a way to improve your site's design and format. It does a good job in visualising your data and is easy to follow as it annotates pages with visual aids instead of the traditional stats and graphs.
Cost: Free (kind of)
Mobile Analytics: No
An open-source alternative to Google Analytics, Piwik is different from others as it's software: You download it, put it on a server and run it. This might put some people off as servers aren't free, but what you get for it far outweighs the cons.
On top of the standard analytic features, Piwik lets you delve deep into your analytics, allowing you to add standard and custom plugins, and tagging to provide you with a truly impressive amount of data and control. It mightn't be for everyone, but if you're looking for something a little more advanced, it's well worth considering.
Cost: Free - $349.95/month
Mobile Analytics: No
Woopra's offering is stylish and offers a flexible and tidy dashboard for you to view your site's data. One great feature is its ability to track actions that aren't easily noticed like videos played and ad click-through rates. Another handy feature is the ability to receive notifications whenever a certain action occurs like when a visitor gets a 404 page, or a ping when a customer makes it through your signup process. Its main focus is on helping you learn more about your visitors, and this is something it does far better than most analytic tools out there.
Mobile Analytics: Yes
While it's one of the older analytics tools out there and lacks in certain areas when compared to rivals, WebTrends still has a lot to offer. Story mode takes various statistics and a lot of information from your website and presents it in an easy to digest package. Upgrading to include certain products like social measurement, and professional services comes at a price, but will help you further analyse your traffic and help you increase it.
Mobile Analytics: Yes
What's to say about Google's offering that we don't already know about. It's free, it's powerful, it's dashboard is customisable so you can arrange it so that the data that you find most important is presented to you first and how it visualises data is clear and easy to understand.
The most popular app and mobile analytics tool out there, Flurry boasts a comprehensive analytics, letting you know how consumers engage, identify the types of people using it and the length of time people spend on your app. Best of all, it's free making it a great tool to use if you're just released a new app.
Cost: Free - $895/month
Built for mobile and tablet apps, Localytics lets you see how your app is being used and identifies the ways you can improve growth in areas like in-app purchases, subscriptions and advertising. It also provides a real-time database, and presents everything neatly so there's no confusion when you're tracking usage and performance.
Very much focused on monetizing your mobile apps, Apsalar is designed to help publishers identify how users engage with their site and where they spend money. By gathering this data, publishers can target special offers to users to help improve engagement per user and average revenue earned per user.
SocialDon is a free Facebook analytics tool that allows your to compare statistical data between Facebook pages; it's a shallow tool, but the breadth of knowledge and information it can attain is near-indeterminable. Very simply, to use utilise SocialDon, users should login via their Facebook page, they can then proceed to search and analyse at their will.
There's unlimited scope to the pages you can analyse. All that is needed is the page name and its unique URL for SocialDon to start searching and gathering analytics (however, this can take a long time). One can then compare data from multiple pages - it may be that you are scoping out business rivals or just soothing curiosity. All the information is set out very neatly and across a variety of graphs and charts for ease of consumption.
Cost: $99/month - $599/month (Custom plans also available)
You have probably happened upon the work of PageLever already, just by browsing YouTube, as they take care of the stats that are publicly embedded below every video on the site. PageLever can provide users with raw data, but PageLever can also give milestones and highlight facts that users may find interesting or insightful and help them improve.
PageLever helps cut though social media noise by showing businesses what is working for them on Facebook and what isn't, in the hopes that will reduce their posts and refine their content while continuing to grow their popularity. PageLever users present you with stats and graphics tell you what and when it is best to post and why that is so.
All Facebook Stats
Cost: Free - $399/month
All Facebook Stats is as close to a comprehensive and in-depth analytics service for Facebook as you can get. However, you will have to fork out for it. At nearly â‚¬400, the large business package will allow you to monitor up to 75 pages, 25 groups and five pages over an unlimited period of time. On the other hand, with the free edition, you can follow three pages, a group and a page, at most. There are intermediate packages that will still set you can a fair sum of cash, but the service All Facebook Stats offers is top of the line, with full pages of graphs and stats that will aid in deciphering your success and failure on Facebook.
Cost: $5 a promotion/$0.99 per day - $250 a promotion/$4.99 per day
There's simple app, produced by Wildfire, that will allow you to compare data from three Facebook pages at on time, on your mobile. It will show you users how the activity on each page has improved over time on an axis, but you can unlock further analytical features by paying more. All cleanly, set out and easy to read on a mobile device of your choosing.
Unlike the other sites and apps mentioned above, Facebook Ranker primarily aims to provide analysis before data. It works much like Klout, in that it provides a rank and gives your page context amongst the hundreds of thousands of Facebook pages in its database. Simply type in your URL to find out where you stand. The site doesn't offer a whole lot in the way of analysis, but it doesn't aim to. Insight may be limited, but Ranker will offer a solid overview and let you know where you really stand.
Cost: Free - $100/month
We're huge fans of TwitSprout here at SZ and when you use it, it's easy to see why. A clear and concise display takes in all your Twitter account data and presents the most important facts on the one page. Updates are tailored to activity instead of a set schedule so you will be alerted when retweets or followers are increasing/decreasing at an abnormal level. Best of all, it presents all this data in an easy to understand format.
Cost: $4.99/month - $99.99/month
Giving you a complete overview of your Twitter account, Twitalyzer places emphasis on numbers instead of visuals as it provides data on the account you've looking at. Twitalyzer also offers additional metric points and reporting data, making it one of Twitter's most complete analytic and measurement apps.
If you want to find out basis stats about your account like tweet density and tweets per month, Tweetstats is the app for you. You can use it to monitor other Twitter accounts as well so you can keep up with the competition and see how similar brands or companies are faring in comparison.
Cost: Free - $59.99/year
The Archivist allows you to archive and analyse the biggest trends on Twitter, so when you're looking for stats on keywords, hashtags or on certain users, it will provide extensive analytics of anything you search for. An extensive tool that also gives you the option to download the results onto an Excel spreadsheet or a .zip file, if you want to keep a record of searched data.
A great web app that provides you with a wealth of information without requiring you to sign up to anything. Practically anything you can think of can be tracked and the site offers a wide range of widgets and buttons that people can add to their blog. Incredibly useful!
If you're looking for some basic sentiment analysis on Twitter, Sentiment140 gives you a quick account of any keywords you search for. It only breaks it down into positive and negative though so it's only useful if you're looking for a quick overview.
Cost: â‚¬750/month - â‚¬12,000/month
A comprehensive marketing tool, Radian6 pulls in conversations from the different social media sites, such as blogs, comments, any public Facebook comments and status updates and all of Twitter. So by entering in keywords relating to your brand, Radian6 will present with comments and updates that are most relevant to you.
You can also integrate it with other accounts like WebTrends and Google Analytics to give you a more comprehensive overview. The price may put some businesses off but those willing to invest will find a powerful tool.
Cost: $50/month - $400/month
The market leader in measuring brands and countries on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, Social Bakers also has an analytics tool that is also comprehensive. As well as identifying your most engaging content and growth, Social Bakers also allows you to compare yourself against other competitors, see how they perform and ultimately identifies ways for you to improve your engagement rates and popularity on social media.
Cost: $29/month - $499/month
Another popular choice, Kissmetrics looks at how people interact with your site, helping you spot patterns that you can later act upon. The service focuses on the people using your site so instead of the traditional analytic features you get, all data will focus on personal usage.