Being Arrogant – A great way to lose on the web (Omniture Vs. IndexTools)

Since I don't really "DO" web analytics and instead advise from a distance, maybe I am uninformed, but after reading this blog post it got me thinking about this quote in particular from a person at Omniture on the recent purchase of Indextools:

"We at Omniture congratulate IndexTools and welcome Yahoo! back to the Web analytics business. Let's be clear though: this move by Yahoo! was done to compete with Google. IndexTools does not compete “toe to toe” with Omniture. The majority of their customers are small businesses (80% of IndexTools customers are SMB according to CMS Watch.) This is great news for small businesses that use Yahoo advertising. However, mid-market and enterprise customers demand advanced functionality, deep domain expertise and specialized services."

I am NO web analyst, but breaking down this quote reeks of arrogance:

1 - IndexTools does not compete “toe to toe” with Omniture - Really?

According to who? PROVE IT! I would love to see IndexTools vs. Omniture vs. Google Analytics reps do an HONEST toe to toe video assessment / webcast. Where they take a business (likely a mid sized business), install their respective tracking systems, and aggregate the data for 3 months. After the end of the 3 months they do this:

  • Video a LIVE session with the stakeholders who would be impacted by the reports
  • CEO/ CIO / Marketing / Web Development / Usability / Product Development (are whom I would consider "impacted")
  • Have each of the client teams above ask 3-5 questions regarding what their problems are on a day to day basis and how data could help them
  • Each vendor answers the question, not with talking, but by going right out to their tool and getting that info.
    • Of course there is a GIGA issue whereby "configurations" impact the resultant data. I'd like to see that "toe to toe" which ones most easily get the team the info they need without additional configuration / costs.
  • Save the video put it on Youtube for all to see.

I think if you are going to say "your tools are for small businesses" be prepared to back it up by going "toe to toe" with other providers for a mid sized / large business. After all I consider many on this list to be big business, and they are using GA in some ways to get actionable data.

2 - "However, mid-market and enterprise customers demand advanced functionality, deep domain expertise and specialized services."

I thought that mid-market and enterprise customers demanded accountability and data driven answers to their questions. This quote is prime material for buzzword bingo! I know that our clients, both big and small want answers to their questions about how to better use data to help them make decisions about their web businesses. They aren't looking for advanced functionality, deep domain expertise, or specialized services if they don't FIRST help them solve problems in a cost effective way.

I wonder if Yahoo or MSN ever looked down their noses at Google, and thought...people don't want a search box..they want sports scores, horoscopes, e-mail, and news first!

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Wil Reynolds
Wil Reynolds
CEO & Vice President