I am a web analyst, so I use lots of web analytics tools in my work. By Far, Google Analytics is the best available tool in the market.
1. Google main business isn't making money from their web analytics tool(though their is a paid version of the tool for bigger clients). As we all know, they make money from providing Advertising solutions to businesses. So the more better data the business have and able to draw insights from it, the more money business will spend with their advertisement solutions. Because of this internal motive, Google always try to be ahead of any web analytics tools when it comes to providing in-depth data and new features in the analytics industry and they are definitely ahead of Everyone.
2. It's a free tool anybody can use and can be setup within few minutes. Now with their Firebase analytics, businesses now can also track and understand their Mobile App performance.
3. Most of the content management solutions like Shopify, Wordpress, magento, bigcommerce, squarespace etc. all provides easy Google analytics installations on their platforms, so even A person with no knowledge of web analytics or coding can get started with easily. There are lots of plugins available for these platforms, you can easily use to implement advance tracking. Which can cover almost all kinds of tracking. If you couldn't find a solution, then you need to take help of web developers who can easily do this for you.
4. You can get lots of amazing data about customers acquisitions, behavior and outcome data to understand your customers and business performance. And with their advanced segmentation capabilities, you can almost slice and dice any aspect of your customers data to find insights, not only session level but also user level with the help of universal analytics.
5. You can even understand the impact of your offline advertisement on your online business and vice-versa, with little change in your advertising strategy.
6. With Enhanced Ecommerce feature in Google Analytics, Business can gain insights about not only the conversions on their website but also the behavioral data of customers, which makes it very powerful to increase sales and conversions.
7. And with Simple integration of Google Analytics with Google Adwords, it gets more better than ever.
8. There are lots of ways to gain insights about your customers and business with Google analytics. invest some time to understand it, you will delighted how much you can learn about your customers.
If you want to consider any other web analytics tools, then I will recommend to use Piwik analytics . It is very cheap and also provide lots of amazing data. But don't rely complitely on it. You it with Google Analytics. It is must have for anyone.
Some other tools, every businesses should be using apart from Google Analytics to get a 360 degree view of their customers are -
User Experience testing - UserTesting
A/B Testing and optimization - Visual website Optimizer
In conjunction with Google Analytics, Every businesses should use one tool from each category.
To learn more about Google Analytics and Digital marketing, go here -
1. Occam's Razor by Avinash Kaushik - He is the best, Period.
2. Analytics Talk by Justin Cutroni
3. Life With Data by Me :)
If you have any questions, Feel free to ask me. I will be more than happier to help you with it.
If you need a simpler, easier to use dashboard for analytics
then go with https://mixpanel.com. Definitely check them out: https://mixpanel.com/engagement/ - get comprehensive stats, measure and track, and do it all in a UX friendly dashboard.