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IBM SurfAid and WebCriteria Announce Partnership

SurfAid teams with Max to Deliver Combined Web Analytics Outsourcing Solution

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SOMERS, N.Y - 17 May 2000: -- IBM Global Services' SurfAid Analytics and WebCriteria today announced a partnership to deliver e-business analysis solutions.

The combined offering will target Web businesses to correlate and analyze their web traffic usage and web user experience data into a single reporting environment. The integrated services are designed to increase site effectiveness, improve customer retention, measure site usability and better understand user behavior.

"The combination of SurfAid and Max will help Web site owners understand the "why" of users' behavior while visiting each page," said Alistair Williamson, CEO, WebCriteria. "Traffic data tells half the story. The other half lies in understanding the user experience, for example, how long does it take to read text on a page, find and choose a link, or wait for a page to load? This, combined with traffic analysis data gives a more complete picture of web site effectiveness."

"IBM is excited to be working with WebCriteria to offer both traffic and user experience data in one solution," said John Payne, IBM SurfAid solutions executive. "IBM and its customers realize the necessity for the correlation of these data sets. Traffic data without user experience data can lead to premature conclusions and vice-versa. Objectively analyzing both traffic and user experience data leads to effective site redesign decisions."

The complementary offerings of IBM SurfAid and WebCriteria allow e-businesses to objectively make data-driven decisions regarding site redesign. Businesses are now able to access information about their site that allows them to maximize its strengths while improving efficiency. This information includes whether visitors frequent particular areas; patterns of behavior among visitors who originate from a particular destination; pages from which visitors exit; and potential causes for visitors leaving the site without purchasing. Using IBM SurfAid and WebCriteria's Max, managers can determine site navigation changes that attempt to meet business objectives. With the combination of both offerings, web managers and designers are able to decipher not just where visitors go on the site, but also why they choose to go to particular URL's.

IBM Global Services' SurfAid Analytics is a web-based ASP for clickstream analysis. The data analyzed includes the web server access logs, which are sent to the SurfAid processing center on a daily basis. This data is processed and organized by SurfAid consultants and placed into a relational data model to facilitate comprehensive analysis. SurfAid's Web-based tool features an intuitive graphical interface, which enables customers to track how visitors are interacting with the site's content. Through IBM's advanced data mining and categorization techniques, SurfAid identifies visitor attributes that directly relate to customer retention, navigation patterns and buying habits.

WebCriteria offers behavior-based technology that objectively measures and compares the user experience of Web sites, using automated analysis tools to analyze ease-of-use attributes of sites. WebCriteria's proprietary "Max" is an intelligent browsing agent that simulates the way an average user sees, thinks, and navigates through a web site. Max allows any web site manager or designer to measure performance, ease of use, site structure and composition and identify specific areas of the site needing improvement. Through Max, WebCriteria makes an objective assessment of visitors' online experiences for targeted sites, including the subject site as well as key competitors or best practice site benchmarks.

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