Is Woopra Gambling Dangerously on the Cool Factor?



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Desktop live web statistics service Woopra is gambling – dangerously, inevitably or both – with it’s ratecard rollout, selling the cool factor to the ‘Web 2.0′ crowd.

Maybe you heard, Woopra has announced an end to its 2-year beta programme, signalling costs for established web sites. The tracking service remains free for startup sites and blogs, with a tiered ratecard for those with over 30000 monthly pageviews.

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Here’s some analysis. First up, the ratecard, (although not set in stone) ..

RatePVs monthlyStorageSSL supportUsersEmailExportChat
Freenil30k3No1NoNoNo
Personal$4.95100k6No1LimitedLimitedLimited out
Pro$14.95200k12No3YesYesOut
Business I$29.95500k12Yes10YesYesIn/out
Business II$49.951M12Yes10YesYesIn/out
Business III$99.953M12Yes15YesYesIn/out

So what does that mean?

Startups & Blog Hobbyists using Woopra

If yours is a non-commercial baby site or blog, with under 30k pageviews per month, you continue to pay nothing for detailed information about site visitors, with live stats direct to your desktop. The catch is that you have to submit a domain for approval and it may take a few weeks to get that.

In other words, you can’t lose. The worst than can happen is that, while awaiting approval, you have to put up with Google Analytics.

Pro Bloggers & Commercial Sites using Woopra

This is the group most affected: people like me! We will have to re-ask ourselves a big question: are we wasting too much time micro-analysing traffic rather than creating great content and working out how to sell it?

.. ‘Probably’ is the likely answer. We still need traffic information though.

We start paying for stats.

Highly trafficked sites using Woopra

For most sites with established revenue streams, up to now Woopra would not have had the toolkit they needed anyway, and with traffic stats having been capped at 10000 daily pageviews. How Woopra will compete with feature-rich and way-cheaper Clicky will be interesting, and possibly painful, to watch.

Wooping for Joy or Woop-Running Off?

If you saw Woopra SEO John Pozadzides’s video about the new changes, you may have been struck by three things; how closely he is targetting the ‘middle web'; how heavily dependent on loyalty is his business; how desperate for cash he sounds (hey, no surprise there then).

I can’t help but think, Woopra’s pitching its beta-prices based on the cool-factor, and I wonder if this is a dangerous mistake. It is a good-looking realtime application, installs and runs beautifully cross-platform, and the community is super-friendly. You know there’s a ‘but’ coming, huh!

But. As soon as charges are introduced – and inevitably they have to be, somehow, for any business model – loyalty has a tendency to wain, and swathes of the ‘Web 2.0′ crowd may switch (especially those who just don’t need live chat and can use GA for reporting.)

Overall, I’m in two minds about the new pricing. On the one hand, I like very much the Woopra product and their culture, want to see this innovative product succeed, and am convinced they will continue to listen closely and improve the feature set. Then again, I would have liked to see their new business model being more imaginative, offsetting more costs against advertising and anonymous stats sales, and offerring an on-client-server statistics history option to reduce one core cost, the server farm.

Meanwhile for the higher end plans, I think Woopra’s offering is way too expensive, comparatively, and lacking many features such as Twitter/Feedburner stats. Then again, I don’t think they are really pushing the pitch to that market anyway .. yet.

Good Luck Woopra

For the record, I’ve used Woopra pretty much since Guvnr launched, and I love it. Then again, I can’t pretend I’m not considering my options now, as this blog does not directly generate income to cover strictly unnecessary costs. Then again, again!, that is beginning to change and there are certain plugin providers I want to $thank in turn, Woopra included. Like I said, it strikes me, Woopra is banking on this fair trade attitude.

This is a key moment for Woopra. They know it. Talk about all hands on deck, John P is answering (mainly very positive) responses to his news announcement personally and with the ratio of 2 ears and 1 mouth.

The next few weeks will be interesting. Woopra’s in-house stats would be the most telling of all.

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About the Author:

Olly Connelly (yeah, that's me) blogs at guvnr.com, polices WordPress security at wpCop.com and helps noobs build web servers at vpsBible.com, so if you've got sleeping problems you know where to come.

Discussion

  1. the_guv  September 28, 2009

    @Lorelle .. like that lots .. handy riposte.

    Really interesting. For the record, I think at least for the lower traffic volumes your pricing is not unfair. I am surprised you are so pricey at the top end, excepting bespokes. Then again, at all levels, personally I would like to see some sort of ads/other revenue to cut pricing further .. or maybe the option for a user to choose between ads/ads-free. For larger volumes, is there any way users could host their own stat history? .. I may well be missing a technical hitch.

    I know you guys are on the case and, er .. so I used to be a tabloid journalist (it’s all coming out now!) .. headline writer too, ‘hem.

    These are interesting times ahead for Woopra, and I wish the project the very best. I guess I’ve glanced at my copy three or four times today already, including an interesting assessment of last week’s stats. I’ve not found a competing stats engine that I enjoy using so much, by a long chalk.

    Meant to link this in the piece .. http://www.woopra.com/blog/.

    Thoroughly kind regards to you (and the Olympic Peninsular), many tx for your detailed response .. and indeed for the help you and the folks have given me personally in the Woopra forums.

  2. Lorelle  September 28, 2009

    Thanks for the analysis and feedback on our proposed pricing plan. Based upon overwhelming feedback, we are rethinking things in all different directions to help our users use Woopra fairly and affordably.

    Some comments, though.

    There will no longer be an “approval” process nor wait time for sign ups. You choose your plan, you’re activated and monitoring your traffic in real time in the time it takes to install Woopra on your site and download and install the Woopra desktop client. While you wait, you can watch the live views and stats on the web app version.

    We have a ton of new features we’ve delayed implementing due to costs, so stay tuned for some great stuff that will compete with other web analytics programs.

    The key benefit of Woopra is the live data, allowing webmasters and web devs to respond now, not later, speeding up their ROI analysis and making decisions now, not later, avoiding lost chances and income. The case uses of Woopra have been beyond our dreams and we’ll be reporting and telling user stories a lot on our blog soon.

    As for the “cool” factor, everything goes through that phase, and Woopra is no exception. What is most important to us is delivering valuable and usable data – actionable data. Pretty is only skin deep. Woopra’s value is in real-time, actionable information, and we’re working hard on our custom reports feature that will allow you to pull in the data YOU want and need, not what we think you need. That’s worth sticking around for. :D

    Thanks again for your input. We’re listening to all the feedback and adding it to the pile to figure out our next step, and this post helps us get a clearer picture on the journey.

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