Microsoft Clarity vs Google Analytics: Which Should You Use?
Written byAlex DixeySenior Analytics Executive
It’s within our nature to compare. With millions of products available to us in a variety of forms and for a variety of functions, we want to ensure we are using the very best products that meet our needs.
The same goes for web analysis tools. There are so many options out there with promising innovations and new features to show us in even finer detail how well our websites are functioning.
Microsoft’s new web analysis tool, Clarity, is making waves in the market. With exciting features such as, session recordings, powerful filtering options, heatmaps, and more, it’s clear to see why users are impressed by what the tech giant has created.
And the fact it’s completely free to use might have something to do with the buzz around this new tool.
While Clarity has plenty to offer, we can’t ignore the pros of using the industry's favourite Google Analytics to analyse our websites.
When two of the biggest names in tech are providing a digital tool kit to improve the overall performance of our websites, we feel compelled to compare both offerings to find out which program will give us the best results.
So, which is better? Google Analytics or Microsoft Clarity? Not to worry, we’ve figured this out for you. Read on!
Microsoft Clarity vs Google Analytics
This is a big factor for most users. Many tools like Google Analytics are scalable and suitable for high-traffic sites, but Clarity has the distinct advantage of being completely free while recording 100% of sessions.
Like many other analysis tools, Google Analytics has a limited free plan with a cap on the volume of recordings and requires you to pay to increase this limit. Depending on the product and how many recordings you require, this cost can be considerable.
Segmenting Your Data
We have seen that Clarity’s filtering controls and ability to customise them with Custom Tags is very powerful. While Google does allow you to segment your data, it simply can’t match Clarity’s extensive granularity.
Just take a look at the huge advanced tab options below:
Clarity has introduced an ingenious way to spot friction actions. Now users are able to identify dead clicks, quick backs, excessive scrolling, and rage clicks, allowing users to see and record where these actions occurred.
We have not yet come across another tool that offers these metrics, so this might give Google a push to add this feature to their analysis tool.
Volume of Data
While Clarity is more narrowly focused on user behaviour, and on showing you how people are interacting with your site, it’s not in itself a full analytics solution and simply doesn’t have the breadth of data or reports to be a direct competitor for Analytics.
As a general example, Google Analytics remains the better place to identify certain pages or a certain section of your site that need a closer look.
Maybe certain pages have a high bounce rate, or users are abandoning a funnel at a certain step - it would be very difficult or perhaps impossible to pick up on this just by looking at Clarity (there is after all no bounce rate measurement in Clarity).
But once you’ve used Analytics to identify that a certain page is a problem, you can then go to Clarity to investigate in more detail what exactly the problem is.
Can Microsoft Clarity and Google Analytics Work Together?
Absolutely. And we believe these two products are more powerful together, working as a team than either one of them is individually.
Microsoft at least appears to agree with this sentiment as they built in the ability to integrate Clarity with Analytics in just a few clicks.
This can be done by going to Settings > Setup and following the simple instructions under the Google Analytics integration section.
Once activated, a new custom dimension will appear in Analytics called Clarity Playback URL.
Let’s say you’re looking at the all-pages report in Analytics. You can now add this as a secondary dimension, allowing you to quickly access recordings featuring whichever page you choose.
Your specific requirements will of course determine which tool is most suitable for you, but Clarity and Google are both strong contenders.
Which tool should you use? In short, the answer is both as both include key features to help you further analyse your website.
As you will have seen by now, Clarity is not a replacement for Google Analytics, nor is it attempting to be. Rather than as a replacement, we much prefer to view Microsoft Clarity as an addition to Google Analytics.
Should it be your sole analytics solution?
Definitely not, but if you pair it alongside Google’s successful features and innovations, Clarity could make an excellent addition to your existing analytics setup.
Microsoft Clarity is completely free to use, so if you feel like discovering for yourself how it functions on your website you can give it a go.
And if you’re still a bit unsure whether you want to download Clarity, you can always take a look at the demo account.