Will Scully-Power

Omniture’s Datawarehouse – a look inside
October 20, 2008, 9:14 am
Filed under: Business Intelligence, Data, Segmentation, Web Analytics | Tags: , ,

What is Omniture DataWarehouse?
Omniture DataWarehouse is a repository of SiteCatalyst data that stores information similar to that which you can see in SiteCatalyst.  While many customers think DataWarehouse is only a backup of their data, it is actually much more than that.  To understand DataWarehouse, you need to first understand how it differs from SiteCatalyst. Want to know more: http://blogs.omniture.com/author/agreco/


Pathing analysis using Omniture Sitecatalyst
October 14, 2008, 6:07 am
Filed under: Web Analytics | Tags: , , , , ,

For most Omniture SiteCatalyst customers, Pathing Analysis is something with which they are pretty familiar.  After all, one of the primary reasons to use a web analytics package is to be able to see how site visitors are traversing the pages of your site.

What is Pathing?
Traditional Pathing Analysis consists of viewing flow reports which show you how often site visitors go from Page A to Page B or Page C on your site.  By simply having Omniture SiteCatalyst code on your site pages, you will be able to see several different pathing reports right out of the box.  Pathing is commonly used to analyse key website process flows in hopes of identifying opportunities for improvement.  For example, you may notice that an unusually high number of site visits show pathing exits after viewing the “Shopping Cart” page.  After you have several months worth of data, you should be able to baseline your standard pathing exit rates and then make changes to key pages and see if these changes have a positive or negative effect.

There are eighteen pathing reports available in SiteCatalyst. Here are the most common:

Next Page Flow
This report allows you to see two levels of pathing from the selected page so you can visually see where visitors are going from the selected page.  The thickness of the bars is representative of the percentages.

Fallout Report
The fallout report allows you to add several pages to a canvas and see how often visitors viewing the first page in the canvas viewed the second page and how often those viewing the second page viewed the third, etc…  It is important to understand that the visitors do not need to have viewed the pages in the exact order indicated on the canvas, but rather, need to have viewed them in the specified order to be included in the fallout report.  While you can only add a finite number of pages to a fallout report in SiteCatalyst, you can add many more to the canvas if you use Omniture Discover.

Pathfinder Report
The pathfinder report allows you to add pages to a canvas, but also provides the ability to add wild cards and choose whether you would like to include entries and/or exits in your analysis.  This pathing tool is commonly used for understanding all of the different ways visitors can get from Page A to Page Z on your site.

Important Things to Know About Pathing
The following are some important things to know about Pathing:

  1. Pathing can be enabled on any Traffic Variable, not just Page Name.  The most common uses of Pathing are Page Name and Site Sections (s.channel), but there are many creative uses for Pathing beyond this.  For example, if you want to have an easy way to see the order that site visitors view your products, you can pass the product name or ID# to a Traffic Variable on each product page and then enable pathing to see which products are viewed concurrently.
  2. Pathing reports only consider that a path has changed when a new value is passed to the Traffic Variable.  This is important, because, if you accidentally use the same page name for two different pages, you will not be able to see instances where visitors went from one page to the other.
  3. Pathing reports do not span multiple visits.
  4. In SiteCatalyst, you cannot combine several pages into a bucket and view pathing to/from the bucket of pages, but you can do this in Omniture Discover.
  5. Pathing reports are not available in Omniture DataWarehouse or the ExcelClient.
  6. You cannot view pathing on a Classification of a Traffic Variable (sProp) in SiteCatalyst (though you can in Discover).  Therefore, you should take this into account when determining whether to capture data values directly into a variable or a Classification.
  7. Pathing reports cannot span across multiple SiteCatalyst report suites so if you want to see pathing for different sites, you need to have a common tag on pages of both sites (known as multi-suite tagging).

Real-World Example
In this installment of our real-world example, let’s say that one of Greco Inc.’s subsidiaries is a Finance related media site and its goal is to increase Page Views so it can increase paid advertising revenue.  As part of its SiteCatalyst implementation, Greco Inc. captures the ticker symbols visitors search upon in a Traffic Variable.  It turns out that people are willing to pay top dollar for Paid Display Ads served up on the ”Apple” ticker symbol (AAPL) results page.  Unfortunately, many of the other ticker symbol search results pages don’t command such a premium.  Therefore, Greco Inc. would like to find a way to identify more “Apples” on its site so it can increase overall advertising revenues.  To do this, they decide to enable pathing on the Traffic Variable containing the ticker symbols being searched upon.  This allows them to see which ticker symbols are being searched directly before and after (shown below) ”AAPL.”

Armed with this information, Greco Inc. can make a case to its clients that it can provide an almost identical audience as those searching for “Apple” at commensurate price.  From a usage standpoint, the best part is that the Ticker Symbol Traffic Variable does not contain all of the site pages, which makes it much easier to follow and provides only the data that is needed.

Content Referened from the Omniture Blog. http://blogs.omniture.com/

Omniture Excel Loader
September 24, 2008, 7:17 am
Filed under: Web Analytics | Tags: , ,

While the reports and dashboards you can create within Omniture SiteCatalyst are great, there is no escaping the fact that power web analysts have an affinity for Microsoft® Excel®.  Microsoft Excel provides numerous ways to manipulate and view data that will never be available in any web analytics tool. 

For this reason, Omniture provides access to a powerful “ExcelClient” (not a typo, there is no space) which allows you to pull data from your Omniture SiteCatalyst data set into Microsoft Excel.  This Omniture ExcelClient is extremely powerful, especially when combined with advanced knowledge of Microsoft Excel, a tool well known to traditional analysts.

Omniture launches app for the iPhone
September 16, 2008, 10:58 pm
Filed under: Web Analytics | Tags: , ,

For those avid SiteCatalyst and iPhone users, Omniture has just released the SiteCatalyst for iPhone now available on the iTunes app store. This enables online marketers who are on-the-go to take SiteCatalyst with them anywhere they’re traveling-at the airport, at home, in the car (pulled aside to the shoulder of course), or wherever their iPhone receives a signal.

This new application builds upon the mobile analytics capabilities we announced in July as part of the latest Omniture SiteCatalyst release, which also enables marketers to access their SiteCatalyst bookmarks and dashboards through their mobile device HTML browser.

The mobile analytics capabilities in SiteCatalyst helps online marketers to better understand their mobile audience, such as the specific devices hitting their site, the type of video & audio support with these devices, as well as cookie and javascript support. These reports are critical to understanding the makeup of the mobile audience as the lack of industry standards has traditionally made it more difficult to accurately analyse mobile traffic.

These innovations in SiteCatalyst now provide web and mobile marketers the ability to effectively measure key metrics such as revenue per mobile device (How much is the Blackberry contributing to direct ecommerce sales?), shopping cart adds (Are iPhone users converting at higher rates than T-Mobile Sidekick users?), as well as develop content strategies such as video formats to include on the site (Which video codecs are most supported across all mobile devices hitting our site?) and audio content (Which ringtones formats should we offer for download?).

Much like what Apple has done with PC’s, laptops, and MP3 players, the iPhone has certainly changed the landscape and dynamics in the mobile phone industry. This means your customers will soon be engaging your site in ways you may not have predicted.

Don’t let these changes give your competitors a new advantage over you-learn what SiteCatalyst can do to help you better serve your (mobile) customers. As our good friend Heraclitus stated “The road uphill and the road downhill are one and the same.” Just make sure that hard uphill journey is the one your competition takes, while your understanding of your mobile customers enables you to coast downhill to online success.

Will Scully-Power
Data Director

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