Reinvigorate analytics and WordPress Plugin

7 Comments

Analytics are a fun, useful, and sometimes dangerous game to play. Analytics provide really useful information, but if too much time is spent focused on them they can draw your attention away from other, equally important tasks.

Reinvigorate, at first glance, is extremely dangerous in that it is addictive to watch. Reinvigorate services up by-the-minute stats, even to the point where it show you who is visiting your site currently, and on what page.

Is a tool like this just for fun, or indispensable? Let’s take a closer look and see.

Reinvigorate review gallery:

Playing with it on WPCandy

In last week’s podcast JD’s pick was Reinvigorate, an analytics app that I had never heard of before. He was experimenting with it on his site and spoke favorably of it. So I’ve given it the run-through here on WPCandy. It’s only been a few days, but I’ve seen enough to say it’s an analytics tool that you should at least try out for yourself.

I’ve seen enough to say it’s an analytics tool that you should at least try out for yourself.

It was dead simple getting Reinvigorate running on WPCandy, since they offer a Plugin that asks for your account information and Plugs in the necessary Javascript.

The Javascript itself is very similar to Google Analytics, in that it’s a simple script at the bottom of the page. I’m not one to treat extra page load lightly, but it doesn’t add much to the overall page download time.

Oh, and there don’t seem to be any conflicts between Google and Reinvigorate running at the same time. There is a larger question: why run them both? But we’ll get to that later.

I found myself on this page most often, since it seemed to give me a consistent feel of the heartbeat of the site.

The Reinvigorate experience

The most useful way I have of describing Reinvigorate, I think, is to describe how it differs from traditional analytics (read: Google’s). And there are really three ways it differs:

  1. Nearly instantaneous reporting
  2. Predictive statistics
  3. Clean, easily navigable design

First, the quick reporting. Quick isn’t an accurate description. There is no perceptual difference between activity on the site and the feedback that Reinvigorate delivers. Watching the numbers, names (yes, sometimes the name of the person browsing the site) and percentages update gives the sensation of holding two fingers to the neck, taking the pulse of the website in the moment.

If only to experience for an afternoon, this is pretty damn worth it.

As much fun to me as the live stats were the predictive stats on the overview pages. You can see it in the screenshot above, on the lower right. Based on the traffic rate, Reinvigorate says:

At this rate you should receive XXXX visitors by the end of the day.

For someone who at times will serve of different kinds of content based on the rate of traffic, this is pretty valuable to me. I, as many site owners I’m sure, have a target traffic number for each month. That breaks down to weekly, and daily numbers, and in that regard this predictive stuff feels like the work of gypsies.

Finally, the design. Compared to Google Analytics it’s, well, designed. As industry standard as Google Analytics is, the design is just crap. It’s a breath of fresh air to use something that feels like it was created to be used by humans.

The place of instantaneous statistics

The past month, with the relaunch of WPCandy, I’ve paid closer attention to traffic than I normally would. I usually recommend reviewing traffic numbers at the end of the month, for sanity’s sake. For now, I’ve been breaking my own rule.

Reinvigorate contributes to this unhealthy behavior by making analytics obsessiveness really fun.

That said, watching this afternoon’s statistics happen in the moment isn’t very useful in the long run. Obviously there are monthly and yearly tracking in Reinvigorate, which itself offers up a good amount of detail. But the main selling point, real-time analytics, might become less useful over time.

Free click tracking? Um, yes please.

Worth checking out

For one user and one website, Reinvigorate is free. This is why you should take a few minutes and check it out right now. Grab the WordPress Plugin (from within your Reinvigorate account) and you’re halfway done. Assuming the real-time stats aren’t that interesting, the free account currently includes click tracking (see the gallery for WPCandy’s click tracking reports). As far as I know, this is now the easiest and best click tracking available for WordPress.

Right now I can’t justify getting rid of Google Analytics. But someday, probably.

Running both Google Analytics and Reinvigorate may be silly. Then again, having two tracking apps may help cancel out some of the expected margin of error. We just shouldn’t go crazy. For now, I’m running both. Right now I can’t justify getting rid of Google Analytics, whether that’s reasonable or emotional. But someday, probably.

I said that Reinvigorate’s real-time tracking is fun, but not useful in the long run. Maybe that’s the point. Perhaps the future of analytics is for real-time to be expected and commonplace. It should be there if we want it (breaking news, product launches, etc.) but fade into the background if we don’t want it. And if that’s the case, Reinvigorate represents the future of analytics better than Google does.

WPCandy rated this 4 mints

7 thoughts on “Reinvigorate analytics and WordPress Plugin

  1. I’m disappointed with Reinvigorate pretty much slapping their original loyal users in the face with a pricetag. Oh yay we got 50% off a year? Yeah, no. I used Reinvigorate for over 3 years while they were in ‘beta’ the entire time. While I loved it.. having to pay $50/yr is not something I see as worthwhile.

    I already have a Mint (haveamint.com) license I bought in 2006. Sure, Mint hasn’t had much new in development over the years but the plethora of 3rd party plugins has made my $30 investment worthwhile–especially when it’s self-hosted and I’m not paying yearly for it.

    I’d stick with the free plan but I would be limited as the cut off is 100,000.. and one account. I have a large multitude of domains which was actually the one thing I’ll miss–one account for multiple domain profiles.

    Oh well.

    • I can understand that. Coming into it now, I don’t know what I’m missing seeing a price tag now.

      I’ve used Mint a bit as well, but for some reason the interface never really sunk in for me.

  2. Without spending more time with reinvigorate, I think the heat mapping feature comes in quite handy. The visual representation of hot spots would be beneficial for several different kinds of users.

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