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Image: Trends in Software Usage Analytics and Monetization 2021

Revenera’s Monetization Monitor: Software Usage Analytics 2021, the second report in our annual research series, is now available for download with the latest stats and insights on software suppliers’ focus on product usage data.

The latest report makes it clear that software suppliers are increasingly turning to software usage data to get the insights they need to drive user engagement, foster long-term customer relationships, and build better products. Here are some of the highlights from the new report:

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Increasing Number of Suppliers are Collecting Software Usage Data

Software suppliers recognize the importance of collecting product usage data, which is growing increasingly common. More than two-thirds (70%) collect usage data today, up from 60% in 2020. The number of software suppliers collecting usage data is expected to grow to a total of 79% within the next two years, while another 12% plan on collecting usage data at some point but are unclear about customer acceptance.

Increasing Number of Suppliers are Collecting Software Usage Data

Room for Improvement with Software Usage Analytics

While more suppliers are collecting data, confidence in the ability to collect product usage data is declining. In 2021, the number reporting that they can do it “very well” was 26%, down from 32% in 2020 and 35% in 2019. Similarly, the reliance on manual interventions, which may indicate the lack of or insufficiently automated processes, went up from 28% in 2020 to 44% in 2021.

Room for Improvement with Software Usage Analytics

Balancing Qualitative and Quantitative Usage Data

Multiple approaches exist for collecting software usage data and feedback on users’ experience with an application. Qualitative approaches tend to be more manual, subjective, and time consuming; quantitative approaches tend to be more automated, objective, and scalable. While software suppliers still value qualitative customer feedback most, quantitative advanced product usage analytics is a close second. Neither qualitative nor quantitative feedback is a substitute for the other. Used together, they can deliver more robust insights into customers’ preferences. For example, surveys on the usability of a new feature can yield more informed insights when completed by those users with greater engagement with that feature as determined by usage analytics.

Be sure to download and read the Monetization Monitor: Software Usage Analytics 2021 report for more details and analysis and let us know what you think in the comments (Be sure to read our first report on Software Monetization Models and Strategies – it’s a great companion piece if you haven’t read it yet).