Measure this.

Google Analytics DashboardIt’s amazing how far we’ve come with regards to web analytics. Does anyone remember the days of pulling down your daily web log file and processing it through the earlier version of WebTrends. Well we certainly have come a long way baby.

I’ve always been a data geek and even in those early days, I would consume myself with trying to interpret that plethora of highly illegible data, somehow trying to convince myself and my clients that our marketing efforts were driving traffic to the site. Well I’m still a fan of the statistics and data, but now the tools and event the metrics have changed face.

Up until recently I was still using WebTrends, however it was their OnDemand product. And while this was a far cry from the early days of its inception, I had always kept my eye on Urchin Tracker. Its simplistic interface, powerful log processing ablity, its humble beginnings and not to mention it was free, quickly made me take notice. As the software grew, others took notice. Most notably Google. Well, I guess the rest is as they say, history.

Now with the advent of Google Analytics (and I know it’s been around for quite awhile), measurement, analytics, trending, whatever you want to call it, is now at anyone’s fingertips. And the thing is it’s such a visual and informative interface, that you actually don’t feel like you are crunching data, but rather reading a story.

It always amazes me to see Google take yet another technology and improve upon it. I’ve definitely seen the reverse in many cases.