If you’re a managing or developing a mobile digital product, you might be (looking into) using Google Analytics for Firebase (previously called Firebase Analytics).
It’s a free tool, built-in with the Firebase suite that Google acquired in 2014. Since then, it has been starting to drive mobile app developers away from Google Analytics for Mobile Apps. Recently very hard through announcing that they will sunset the Analytics Services SDK so you’ll have to use the Firebase SDK.
Update: Google has launched a new Google Analytics for Firebase view in bèta. It combines both Web & App measurement and will be developed in the future as their main Mobile Analytics Reporting tool. Although it looks promising, it still has its limitations.
Although Firebase is a very valuable toolset, Google Analytics for Firebase is just not quite there yet.
That’s why I wanted to show you 5 alternatives you can use together or instead of Firebase:
Amplitude Analytics announces itself as Product Analytics for the Digital Era. They are a product analytics platform that is looking to change the way products are managed.
They have a very open data taxonomy which you can set up to your needs. There’s lots of querying options and graphs available unseen within other product analytics tools. They also partner up with other first-in-class tooling within different categories.
It requires some data savviness to set it up and gain the insights, but it’s definitely worth the learning curve.
Pricing: Free up to 10M / month, custom pricing above that.
Mixpanel, just like Amplitude is specifically aimed at product analytics. It provides all widgets you would need to manage your product and get to know your customer. You can built cohorts easily and use machine learning to easily answer all your product questions.
3. Adobe Analytics
Adobe has a very extensive suite of analytics and marketing tools. It is widely used by bigger corporations who sit on a lot of data, spread over different websites, apps and other business software. Mostly referred to as ‘Business Analytics’.
It’s very customizable to set up but sometimes lacks clarity and flexibility to query data in the way you want to. The integration with the other tools in the suite is very convenient although it comes with the price of every individual tool not being the best one out there…
Website: Adobe Analytics
Pricing: Custom, rumored to be $30k to $100k / year.
4. Google Analytics for Mobile Apps
IMPORTANT UPDATE: This will no longer work after the sunset of the Google Analytics Services SDK. GA for Mobile Apps properties will be deleted. Export your data.
Although Google is trying to force us all to the Firebase SDK, you can still use Google Analytics as your main tool to do your analysis. It’s become somewhat harder to pull off, but you can do it. I’ve written an article on how to set up Google Analytics through Firebase SDK and Google Tag Manager.
5: BigQuery + Google Data Studio
Another option if you want to keep using Firebase is to send all your data to BigQuery by taking a Firebase Blaze plan. This will allow you to send your event data to Google Data Studio and make your dashboards in there.
Although Google Data Studio is finally out of beta mode, it still lacks some querying options that you’ll need if you want to study user behavior within your app.
Define your needs
You see there’s a lot of alternatives to use instead or together with Google Analytics for Firebase. You can still go the free route, but increasingly more product-minded analytics tools are available offering value for the money.
Google Analytics for Firebase will definitely improve over time, but until then you should explore if there’s better tools out there.
Need help? Don’t hesitate to contact me!