Analytics APIs Will Be Our Bridge to Intelligence



Eric Peterson has a kick
ass post titled “
The Coming
Bifurcation in Web Analytics Tools
.” 

In it he defines the
bifurcation issue: 

“I
believe that we are about to see an increasing number of companies in the
coming year drop their paid vendor’s “basic solution” in favor of Google
Analytics and, at the same time, seriously consider adding their vendor’s
high-end offering.”

Though he does not
highlight it, he also mentions what I believe will eventually bridge this
predicted bifurcation. That is, the ability to leverage the Analytics API to
create more robust and relevant tool sets, not only for workflow and insights,
but most importantly for action. He does mention ShufflePoint as an example of
a company building off the Google Analytics API and while being a killer
workflow add-on it barely scratches the surface of what can be done via an
analytics API.

So, I firmly believe that
the bifurcation Eric writes about will be temporary. In addition to cost, the API
is GA's big competitive advantage in the enterprise.  Google is
positioned well and experienced for this future. Over the next few years
third parties insanely focused on
adding value to
"numbers"
 will create added layers of data
intelligence to the core analytics data much the same way bid management and
MVT companies added actionable intelligence to the core Search data over the
last 5 years.

Though I
understand their protectionist mindset, I've been disappointed that Omniture
has held back API access to their customers through tokens and the like (though
I believe they recently have opened up higher degrees of access to their Genesis
partners). I think at some point over the next 12-24 months and as a direct
result of Eric’s prediction coming true, they will have no choice but to fully
open their API. This will really usher in
the next wave of
analytics 
and add serious value to an already insanely valuable
medium.

One thought on “Analytics APIs Will Be Our Bridge to Intelligence

  1. A lot of people (at least in the web analytics space) have been talking about using a universal/standard analytics tag as well. Not sure how realistic it is to see vendors standardizing on this, but it’s not surprising that analysts want to spend more time analyzing instead of implementing. I am also quite content to let a GA or a YWA do the heavy lifting and collect and store the data for me.
    I am not sure however that I am as optimistic about analytics API ushering in a new wave of analytics. Apart from a few “cool” visualizations I have not seen any really great tools that make use of the GA API, which has been out for quite a while now. There have been a few AIR apps, but why would I want to learn a new UI? Maybe I just don’t have any good ideas, or perhaps I am looking in the wrong places! What tools do analysts need to help them do what they can’t do now?
    But my argument is not even so much about tools. Even with great new tools, I think the reality is that it’s still up to the individual or organization to take action. The problem is that we are not really wired to be working with lots of data. You and I could look at the same data and see different things. We are likely to “see” trends when there aren’t any. We attach more weight on simple things we can understand, and on and on.

    Like

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