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VisiStat makes Web analytics easy

VisiStat makes Web analytics easy

You can't do business without a Web site these days. But how much business is your Web site actually doing? There are several Web analytics products that will try to tell you just what's up with your site, including a cool one I just scoped out, VisiStat.

VisiStat seems to provide just the right level of data on a site's traffic. Its main reports are graphical and easy to read. You get good information on traffic and where it comes from (both geographically and from which referral sites) and also excellent data on which search terms are leading people to your site.

Also, the reports are live. If you're looking at hourly traffic for the current day, the numbers on the page will count up as visitors use your site. It's sort of a gimmick, but it does telegraph activity. There's also a mini pop-up site monitor that shows you how many people are on your site and where the last person visited from.

On August 9, an upgrade to VisiStat will also allow you to track, in real time, what users are doing on your site. You'll even be able to select a user and watch as he or she navigates your pages (you won't be able to identify the user, though).

The site could have better graphical presentation of some of its newer reports. For example, while VisiStat will tell you which links on a page are generating clicks, it won't show you your pages and where people are clicking (competitor ClickTracks does this). CEO Stephen Oachs told me his team is working on refining some of VisiStat's features to make it even more usable.

It's easy to add VisiStat reporting to your site: you just insert a snippet of code in your site's global header or footer. All the heavy lifting is done Web 2.0-style, on the VisiStat servers. For use on a modest small-business site (traffic of less than 25,000 pages a month), the service costs $19.95 a month.