Unless you’ve been hidden away for the last month or so, you’ve no doubt heard about Adobe’s exciting announcement with regard to the introduction and launch of SiteCatalyst version 15. I attended the Adobe Omniture Summit in March, and the various product feature announcements were met with much excitement and applause. As an avid SiteCatalyst user and a consultant to many clients with SiteCatalyst implementations, I am thrilled with the new features, and am anxiously awaiting the opportunity to help my clients dig into their data in a whole new way with this new version.
Now that some of the dust has settled and the new features have been revealed in the product overview, I’d like to share with you the things that excite me the most about SiteCatalyst version 15. This is by no means meant to be a comprehensive guide to all of the changes upgrades in v15, but I hope to offer you a glimpse into the exciting new features that the tool has to offer. So, let’s get started with my three favorite things about SiteCatalyst v15.
This is perhaps the most exciting new feature of SiteCatalyst v15 – the ability to apply segments to data within SiteCatalyst, on the fly. As anyone who has ever used Adobe’s Discover or Data Warehouse products knows, the ability to slice and dice your data by various segments is something that can provide more insight than you can possibly begin to imagine. In SiteCatalyst v15, Adobe provides users with the ability to define custom segments and apply them to virtually any metrics in the interface.
The possible uses of segmentation are endless, and segmentation can offer a glimpse into the behavior of your users that you never thought possible. Recently, another consultant and I performed an analysis of user behavior on the site segmented by users who had used a particular on-site tool versus those who had not, in an attempt to determine whether this tool drove increased engagement, buying behavior, and loyalty. Through the use of segmentation, we were able to determine that users who interacted with this tool were nearly 90% more likely to return to the site, were 70% less likely to bounce directly off the site, and were 50% more likely to engage in buying behavior. This is great information, and is only available through the use of segmentation.
Full Subrelations for All!
Correlations and subrelations are perhaps some of the most powerful features of SiteCatalyst today, and allow users to break down metrics by other metrics in a seemingly limitless number of combinations. This has always been a great feature, and is something that I use on a daily basis, whether to break down search engines by keywords, pages by onsite search keywords, or products by campaigns. Up until recently, however, full subrelations were reserved for only a few metrics, like campaigns, products, and visitor loyalty, and data breakdowns were only available after setting them up within SiteCatalyst. Starting in version 15, SiteCatalyst users can look forward to breaking conversion variables down without limits – all conversion variables will have full subrelations enabled by default. This will empower users to more easily find the answers to their questions – sometimes before they are even asked.
Old Reports, New Metrics
Perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of analytics is the distinction between different metrics and their meanings. I cannot count the number of times that someone has asked me to explain the difference between Instances, Clickthroughs, Searches, and Visits (and I don’t see that stopping anytime soon). With the launch of SiteCatalyst v15, Adobe has helped to ease the pain in these situations, by providing Page Views, Visits, and Unique Visitors as default metrics in almost all reports. Gone are the days where companies need to add a “Page Views” event in order to pull this metric into all reports, and marketers can breathe a sigh of relief, too – “Visits” means the same thing no matter what report you’re looking at! The addition of these metrics will allow users to more easily compare metrics from one report to another.
In addition to these default metric additions, Adobe will be adding Bounces and Bounce Rate as standard metrics. This will allow users to evaluate the effectiveness of pages and campaigns with the click of a button, instead of going through the arduous process of creating calculated metrics. Bounce rate is one of the metrics that I look at most frequently when determining the effectiveness of new initiatives, so this is a very welcome addition.
These are only three of the exciting changes that Adobe has announced with the launch of SiteCatalyst v15 – there are dozens of others, including improvements in data processing, new video reports, and new site overview and key metric views. Do you have a favorite that I didn’t list here? Do you have questions about the new features? Hit the comments! I welcome your feedback, and look forward to joining you in the new and brighter future of SiteCatalyst v15.