April 15

17 Best Product Analytics Tools for Product Managers [2021]

What is product analytics?

When it comes to product management, it’s all about shaping the story of how your product should evolve. Customers provide feedback, ideas are brainstormed and documented, yet many organizations are missing one of the most important elements to telling the right story around what to do next: product management analytics.

Product management analytics are a necessary part of any product manager’s toolkit, allowing teams a better, more granular understanding of how users are interacting with their respective products. Want to compare feature usage? Find out what pages aren’t being used? See the customer journey from point A to Z? These are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the product metrics that can be researched and reviewed.

While advocacy and passion on behalf of the voice of the customer is important, gut feelings and reactive feedback will only take the product so far. By adopting the right tools to break down important product metrics, teams are better suited to begin proactively finding problems and solving them. The best product managers are those that can blend product analytics and customer feedback together, always ensuring that the right value is being prioritized and delivered.

What are product analytics tools used for?

Product manager analytics are the most objective way to receive feedback about your products. Not only will the data be a constant source of truth, but these metrics will provide a level of insight that can’t be found anywhere else. Without this key information available, product managers will find themselves hamstrung when attempting to prioritize the right problems to solve, sometimes forcing them to be reactive instead of strategic.

When considering the right product analytics tools you should adopt, there are three main categories that should be considered:

  • Product Engagement – how often do users click certain elements, spend time on pages, etc.?
  • User Behavior – how are users navigating, utilizing, and experiencing your product?
  • Product Health – how stable, performant, and reliable are your products?

As you begin to research and decide which tools are best for you, it’s highly recommended to treat all three of these equally. Each of the categories above will give you an arsenal of areas to consider, each telling their own important story. Lucky for product teams, many tools have overlapping features across those three main categories.

How can product analytics software help you?

As stated above, product manager data analytics are one of the best ways to proactively engage and solve problems in your products. Without these tools, many product teams find themselves fumbling in the dark, hoping to guess their way to the next best thing to do. Think of any roadmap strategy meeting you’ve attended – having the data available provides a solid foundation to make your case on which features to build next, which areas have problems that need to be addressed. Simply put, think of analytics as the yin to feedback being the yang – you need both to strike a balance and achieve perfect harmony for your product strategy.

What are the main product metrics?

While many tools offer an abundance of metrics to work with, the following list is the most common and valuable to begin using:

  • Clicks on specific elements
  • Clicks on specific areas of a page
  • Time spent on pages
  • Unique users (both for B2B & B2C products)
  • Unique customers (generally for B2B products)
  • Product uptime

Starting with these key metrics will elevate your understanding of your products in truly incredible ways. Bonus points if the tool offers integrations to pull in your organization’s unique metrics from other tools in your tech stack!

Common products analytics software features

With so many product analytics tools on the market, it’s important to understand the most common features you should be evaluating when weighing your decision. Be sure to keep a lookout for these and figure out which experiences you like the most!

  1. Time spent on a page – which pages are getting the most attention and why?
  2. Click events & heatmaps – what buttons and areas are being clicked on the most and least?
  3. Clickpaths & journey mapping – how are your users navigating and finding what they need?
  4. User session recording – how are users interacting with your application?
  5. Proactive engagement options – how can engagement be increased for new and existing features?
  6. Stability, uptime, and performance metrics – how “healthy” are your products?
  7. Customizable dashboards – how quickly can you visualize all your data to monitor goals and KPIs?

17 Best Product Analytics tools for Product Managers

While there are many tools for product managers in the market, finding the right tool for your product can be a daunting process. Depending on the maturity of your products and the type of information you’re hoping to capture, the tools below can provide you with much-needed insight to help your products reach their full potential.

PRODUCT ENGAGEMENT


Amplitude

Amplitude is an incredibly powerful tool that helps product teams best understand their customers while continuously providing insight to ensure proactive retention. With a strong variety of visualizations and data tracking options, product managers can easily track high-level KPIs and granular metrics as well.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Gainsight PX

Gainsight PX offers product teams a truly robust and connected set of functionality to track usage, collect customer feedback, and provide in-app engagement opportunities to encourage adoption and retention. As part of their growing portfolio, this product analytics platform offers a truly powerful experience to understand the entire customer lifecycle.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B space


Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a major player in the analytics space, providing product managers a strong solution to monitor user traffic and general product usage. The main power behind Google Analytics is in its powerful integrations to other tools to easily gather data to be used throughout your entire company’s tech stack.

Who is it good for?

Product & Marketing teams in the B2C space


Heap

If you’re looking for an incredibly granular product analytics tool that helps tell the story for each individual user, look no further than Heap’s offerings. By tracking user events and behavior with little to no effort required from an engineering team, product managers can immediately dive in to begin segmenting and reviewing customer experiences throughout the product.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Mixpanel

For product managers that want both self-service as well as a technical path to gathering and understanding product analytics, Mixpanel offers a wide variety of solutions to help measure and even predict customer usage across your unique segmentation needs. Complete with customizable dashboards and a nearly endless series of options to manage your metrics, Mixpanel is a great addition to any product manager’s toolkit.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Pendo

For product managers that are aiming to both understand overall product usage and proactively engage with customers, Pendo is one of the fastest-growing options on the market. Teams using Pendo are able to capture both quantitative and qualitative insights, direct customer feedback, and general product metrics across both web and mobile applications, making it a great option for teams with both a large and small product portfolio.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


WalkMe

WalkMe is an excellent tool for any product manager that is looking to drive the digital adoption of their product suite. Gather insights, offer guidance, and provide the best engagement to ensure that your customers are truly getting the best experience possible.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


USER BEHAVIOR


Fullstory

Self-described as the digital source of truth, FullStory is an incredibly appealing analytics tool that should be considered by product managers that want to truly understand how their products are being used. With FullStory, Teams are able to monitor actual user behavior by watching historical and real-time user sessions, diving into rage click situations, and experiencing issues alongside their users.

Who is it good for?

Product, Support, & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Hotjar

Hotjar’s offerings provide an enticing blend of behavior monitoring and user engagement in one very sophisticated package. As a product manager, Hotjar’s session recording and direct feedback functionality will help you understand the whole story of how users are truly experiencing your product, allowing you to create even better experiences within your portfolio.

Who is it good for?

Product & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


LogRocket

For product managers that want to not only watch actual user sessions but also track errors and performance issues, LogRocket is the tool for you. By following a user’s journey each and every time they go to your product to understand the good and bad, the frustration and intuitive flow, your team will have to glean key insights on how your product works and what needs to be fixed.

Who is it good for?

Product, Support, & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Mouseflow

Mouseflow is a powerful tool for product managers looking to understand why visitors aren’t converting to customers. With its in-depth product heatmaps, conversion funnels, and in-app surveys, you will be able to improve your digital adoption experience and see customers engaging with everything you have to offer.

Who is it good for?

Product, Marketing, & Customer Experience teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Smartlook

If you’re looking to capture product metrics and user sessions on both web and mobile devices, Smartlook may be the best tool for you. Smartlook offers an incredibly clean interface, clear visualizations, and access to recordings and historical user engagement data – perfect for any product manager with a variety of products to observe.

Who is it good for?

Product, Support, & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


PRODUCT HEALTH


Crowdstrike

Regardless of the type of software you manage, Crowdstrike’s security monitoring product analytics are a great addition to your products. Crowdstrike provides proactive alerts, visual dashboards, and real-time updates to ensure your team is one step ahead of any issues, providing peace of mind to the security and safety of your products.

Who is it good for?

Product & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


DataDog

As a product grows, product managers will begin to hear more and more issues around performance, stability, and general reliability – enter Datadog. With Datadog, teams can proactively monitor issues with end-to-end user experience visibility, which will allow your product issues to be handled before they become a risk.

Who is it good for?

Product & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


New Relic

For the technical product managers, New Relic will offer your team a complete solution to help you analyze, troubleshoot, and optimize your product stack. Complete with detailed reporting visualizations and applied intelligence to help you find and resolve problems before your customers do, product teams can rest easy knowing that they’ve provided a reliable experience to their users.

Who is it good for?

Product & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Sumo Logic

Sumo Logic is an incredibly powerful product analytics tool that provides clear insights and detailed visuals for any team looking to monitor and troubleshoot issues as they come along. Not only will Sumo Logic help your product team be prepared for threats that may be thrown their way, but it also provides a predictive engine to analyze customer behavior and prepare for possible future problems, ensuring you’re ready for anything.

Who is it good for?

Product & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


Splunk

Instead of sweeping issues under the rug, Splunk helps product managers stay ahead of problems by monitoring incidents and gauging product health in real-time. The only way to get better is to understand where the problems lie, and with Splunk, teams will be provided clear indications of how your product is performing and its best and worst, allowing you the visibility to constantly improve.

Who is it good for?

Product & Engineering teams in the B2B + B2C spaces


How to choose the best product analytics software for you?

With so many options to choose from, what works best for you? Whether you’re creating a brand new product from scratch or looking to add more tools for tracking product metrics to an existing stack, it’s important to understand where the gaps lie in your data. Do you want to track feature rollouts with goals and KPIs? Are you having problems engaging with your customers? Do you really understand how your users interact with your products? Are you experiencing performance and stability issues more frequently? These are a few of the questions you should be asking yourself as you begin your search for the right product analytics tools. If you are just starting out with product analytics, choose one tool and get your feet wet. Just be sure to keep looking for information gaps as your product grows, and don’t be afraid of investing in multiple options!

Our conclusion about product analytics tools

If you’ve read this far, then you’ve realized how crucial it is to adopt the right tools for your product suite. Whether you’re brand new or a seasoned veteran to the world of product management, these tools will be one of the guiding factors in making the best decisions for your products and users. Analytics tools for product managers are the difference between good products and great products, so make the right decision and aim for greatness.

Josh Trauberman

About the author

As the director of product at inMotionNow, Josh rides the line of organized chaos, finding that the greatest professional satisfaction is the result of reining everything in and effectively creating beautiful new processes, products, standards, and expectations. Through his diverse background in sales, customer success, and now product development, he has gleaned insights into the needs of the many and what it takes to grow not just a product portfolio, but a business. When he's not in the weeds of creative problem solving, Josh enjoys diving into the world of storytelling and spending time with his son.


Tags


You may also like

Idea Generation for Product Managers

4 Steps to Perfect Product Launch Plans in 2021