Google Analytics is, at best, a fair way of tracking site traffic. Google Analytics will give you some idea of how many visitors per day your site attracts, which days are more profitable than others, and where your visitors are coming from. The main problem with Google Analytics is that it provides all of this information in a delayed fashion.
Finally, Google has decided to update its Analytics site to include real-time information. Google Real-Time is currently in Beta, but Google has allowed some people to use the real-time site. Just how many people? Well, that remains to be seen, but you can check your Google Analytics page right not to see if the Google gods have granted you access.
How Google Real Time is Different
When you send out a Tweet or add a new entry to your blog, it’s nice to know whether or not anyone has read that entry or looked at that Tweet. Prior to the updated version of Google Analytics, it was impossible to see whether or not a Tweet had any direct impact. There are other sites that provide this kind of information, but Google was largely behind the times when it came to real-time tracking.
It’s easy to see why real-time analytics is a marketer’s dream. If a particular link or Tweet goes over very well, it’s safe to assume that the topic at hand is an important one. If a Tweet doesn’t get any notice at all, well, there’s no point in sticking to that topic. As you can see, it is essential that Google offers real-time analytics to users.
Google Analytics Premium
Technically, Google Analytics Premium doesn’t have much to do with Google’s current real-time analytics offering. Yet, this addition to the Google analytics team is worth mentioning. Google has offered users a paid version of Analytics for the first time. Google Analytics Premium includes some things that the free version of Analytics doesn’t (not to mention a hefty price tag).
If you want to go the Premium route, you’ll gain around-the-clock support, more analytics, and better processing. How much will it cost you? Google offers Analytics Premium for a cool $150,000 per year – yep, you read that right. So, do you stick with the free and newly updated Google Analytics or check out Google Analytics Premium? For my money, a real-time free version of Analytics works just fine.
As mentioned, Google has allowed some people access to the real-time site already. But since this site is in beta, and companies don’t like to let the world in on beta sites, Google isn’t ready to let everyone use the real-time version of Analytics.
Google hasn’t made any kind of formal announcement regarding the worldwide release of real-time analytics, but it’s safe to assume that this site won’t be in beta for long. If you don’t have access to Google real-time, try shooting Google an email. If you use Analytics for more than one site, Google just may grant you beta access.