Heap vs. KISSmetrics

Heap and KISSmetrics are both event-based analytics tools used by thousands of websites and mobile apps today. Both tools offer detailed user-level views, advanced conversion funnels, segmentation analysis, and other ways of analyzing data that are important to modern apps.

Beyond that, however, there are significant differences. KISSmetrics requires you to manually write custom tracking code for each event you care about. Heap, however, additionally offers automatic event tracking, where user interactions are captured automatically without any code.

Automatic Event Tracking

Heap allows you to track events on your website or mobile app automatically. On web, Heap tracks every pageview, click, form submission and more without any work on your part. On mobile, Heap automatically tracks every touch, swipe, tap, and other gesture events. KISSmetrics, on the other hand, requires manual instrumentation for each and every event you want to track, using the KISSmetrics record method. As a result, with Heap, you can start generating conversion funnels after a 1 minute installation. KISSmetrics can take weeks to properly instrument for complex apps, and requires significant ongoing maintenance.

Complete User Histories

Heap offers the ability to drill down into individual users. The List view displays individual user histories, which show a comprehensive picture of every single thing a given user has done on your website or mobile app. While KISSmetrics does have some useful user views, it will only display actions for each user that you've explicitly chosen to track.

Automatic Event Tracking

All events defined in Heap are applied retroactively. If you've only defined a "Like Article" event today, but have had Heap installed for the past five months, then you'll view the past five months of data on this interaction instantly. This allows you the flexibility to define events and run queries whenever they're needed, rather than accounting for every possibility from the outset. KISSmetrics events only begin tracking data once you've written tracking code and deployed it live.

Event Visualizer

Heap provides a simple, point-and-click interface that allows people to create events without knowing any code. Product managers, marketers, designers, and other non-developers can setup conversion funnels or do segmentation analysis in seconds. By contrast, KISSmetrics requires custom development work for each event you need to track. (In case it's necessary, Heap still offers the ability to manually track events in much the same way as _kmq.record.)

Real-Time

Every graph and funnel in Heap is real-time and processes all user data with up-to-the-second accuracy. The graphs and metrics in KISSmetrics, on the other hand, typically have a delay of several hours. Both Heap and KISSmetrics offer a real-time view of user-level activity.

Pricing

KISSmetrics does not offer a free usage tier. Heap, on the other hand, offers a free tier which lets small businesses use the full-featured version of Heap without limits. In addition, Heap's pricing allows for unlimited event tracking per session, whereas KISSmetrics charges per event, requiring you to carefully pick and choose the most important events upfront.

When Should I Use Heap?

Heap is well-suited for any businesses with websites or mobile apps that would otherwise require custom development work to use analytics software. The automatic event tracking in Heap eliminates work for developers, plays well with constantly changing apps, and enables retroactive analysis. Additionally, Heap excels in businesses where non-technical users need analytics. The Event Visualizer makes analytics more accessible than KISSmetrics' approach.