London – 24th May 2005 – Today, Web analytics industry experts, leading vendors and organizations that utilize web analytics announced the formation of the Web Analytics Association (WAA). The mission of the not-for-profit organization is to unite and foster the interests of end-users, vendors, consultants and educators involved in measuring the success of their online business initiatives.

Online shopping is a growing, multi-billion pound industry. According to Forrester Research, digital marketing grew by 24% in 2004, helping to drive demand for site analytics. Approximately two-thirds of online consumers research online then purchase offline, so firms are seeking ways to track customers across channels — which is where Web analytics comes in. (“Web Analytics Market: Continued Growth in 2005,” Nov. 30, 2004). In addition, 54% of companies expect to spend more or significantly more on web analytics in 2005 (“Customer Experience Spending Expands,” Forrester Research, Jan. 2005).

“More than ever before, marketers are required to justify expenses based on metrics. Since the Web is a great medium for measurability and optimization, its no wonder that marketers are drawn to the online world,” said Jim Sterne, president of the Web Analytics Association and president of Target Marketing. “Many organizations still don’t realize the value of Web analytics or aren’t empowered to take action. The WAA sets out to promote issues like education, advocacy and standards to strengthen and stabilize the growing Web analytics industry.”

Founding corporate members of the WAA include IBM, Omniture, Nedstat, Coremetrics, Visual Sciences, WebSideStory and WebTrends. Premiere corporate members to-date include HP, ClickTracks, Harvest Solutions, Site Intelligence and ZAAZ.

The founding members of the WAA board of directors are:

- Chairman – Bryan Eisenberg, co-founder, Future Now, Inc.

- President – Jim Sterne, president, Target Marketing

- Vice President – Seth Romanow, director, Worldwide Customer Knowledge Management and Analytics, Hewlett-Packard Company

- Secretary – Andrea Hadley, president, NetSetGo Marketing

- Treasurer – Andrew Edwards, managing partner, Technology Leaders

- Member – Rand Schulman, chief marketing officer, WebSideStory

- Member – Greg Drew, general manager, WebTrends

Members of the WAA have the opportunity to participate in many key initiatives through committees. Some of the committees already identified are:

- Advocacy – Build consensus, promote and advance an understanding of the variety of legislative issues facing web analytics today.

- Education – Inform and educate the marketplace by developing focused and expert-level education programs to ultimately result in certification.

- International – Facilitate the promotion and understanding of regional issues.

- Research – Provide relevant and useful data into trends, best practices and issues facing the Web analytics industry.

- Standards – Develop common measurement methodologies, metrics, and nomenclature.

- Technology –Drive the evolution of web analytics technology by offering technical expertise and recommendations.

“The market for Web analytic products and services is growing but it is still constrained by issues such as awareness, common terminology, and best practices,” said Bill Gassman, industry analyst at Gartner. “An association of vendors, consultants, and end-users focused on these issues offers hope that businesses will achieve a better and a faster return on its Web analytic investments.”

Added Seth Romanow, vice president of the Web Analytics Association and director of Worldwide Customer Knowledge Management and Analytics at Hewlett-Packard Company, “One of the challenges end-users face is not having a common language for measuring and reporting on key metrics, such as conversions, unique visitors and abandonment. As one of our first tasks, WAA members will review and refine these definitions to provide a better understanding of key metrics and industry benchmarking.”

The WAA is an open, non-for-profit organization. Any organization or professional wanting to participate in improving and furthering the field of Web analytics should become members. To disseminate the latest information, resources, and best practices, the WAA will maintain the web site, http://www.webanalyticsassociation.org.

About The Web Analytics Association

The Web Analytics Association is a non-profit professional organization dedicated to promoting the understanding of Web analytics through education, advocacy, standards, research and technology. Founded by web analytics industry leaders, the mission of the association is to unite and foster the interests of practitioners, vendors, consultants and educators who use, sell, install, implement, consult, teach or train in the field of web analytics. For more information, or to become a member, please visit http://www.webanalyticsassociation.org.

Contacts:

To find out more about membership, volunteer, or sponsorship opportunities for the Web Analytics Association, contact Bryan Eisenberg, Chairman, beisenberg@webanalyticsassociation.org

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Published on: 12:00AM on 24th May 2005