I am attending WebTrends classes for technical professionals and will share some of my notes taken durnig the classes. The notes will not be complete nor very eloquent but will capture the most important information during the training.
Notes from day 1: WebTrends Essentials for Technical Professionals
Content groups can be defined two ways: through content words contained in URLs or through page tagging.
The page tag for content groups is WT.cg_n:
Set meta “WT.cg_n”=content “keyword” – for content groups (URL+WT.cg_n=”keyword”)
Set meta “WT.cg_s”=content “subkeyword” – for sub content groups
WebTrends by default truncates query parameters.
The report graphs and dashboards require the installation of Java which would require one to be administrator on their PC.
Daily reports saves hourly traffic. It makes sense to keep the daily reports for not more than 3 – 6 months.
Custom calendar range used daily reports. Comparative calendar range uses weekly reports.
WebTrends would look at it as three different page views although it is the same page. You would need to build either custom report or parameter analysis to avoid the URL truncation.
You can use translation table mapping query IDs to titles of the articles published.
Path analysis can give you view into 20 steps before and 20 steps after a defined URL. Scenario analysis would have the actual URLs and query parameters for each step and view the path analysis with query parameters.
In a form with multiple fields, you can tag each field to create a scenario analysis with one page only but multiple fields using the on-click event.
In the WebTrends Resource Center, very valuable information is in “Understanding Data Collection” under Implementation > “WebTrends Query Parameters” and “Tracking Downloads and Form Completions”.
With SmartSource Data Collection information about PDF downloads is not logged. You need to do on-click event to track PDF download.
To track Google paid search results, use the following tags:
WT.mc_ID=10001&WT.srch=1 where 10001 is the marketing campaign ID and WT.srch=1 tells WebTrends this is paid search and automatically updates paid search terms and phrases.
WebTrends cookies by default are set as persistent cookies with 10 year expiration. Cookies are the primary identifier for visitor history.
WebTrends_ID cookie contains customer IP address, time in milliseconds since 1974 and duration.
Rejection for 1st party cookies are around 12%, 3rd party cookies around 25%. Home users of AOL readily accept cookies in IE but Firefox does not accept 3rd party cookies by default.
Thirty minutes of inactivity ends a user session. Multiple users through a corporate firewall would generate a single session as long as there is less than 30 min between visitors. AOL can overstate page views by assigning randomly a shared IP address.
Usually traffic measurements based on cookies is better by 20 – 30%.
1st party cookies means that my site is issuing the cookie.
Set in the profile to save 180 daily reports and delete the older reports — rolling 180 daily reports. The feature to remove old files is disable by default.
Deleted Data Cleanup is under Scheduler > Scheduled Events. To enable the feature, unclick the check box for disabling the feature.
Keep quarterly and yearly reports for ever. Keep daily reports only for the last 6 months.
Standard size for a profile is about 1 MB per day. Recommendation no more than 30 custom reports per profile.
Version 8 will allow you to define what is an event. You can define what events you want to scoop out of the log file and automatically export into Oracle or SQL server and run queries there.
The proprietary database is non-querable; in version 8 you can export it for queries.
Comparative calendar view would compare week vs week or month vs month — likewise ranges.
Important: For custom calendar range the dates need to be contiguous. Visitors summary would show incorrect visitors summary in a custom calendar range because it sums up the daily visitors for each day into a total numver for the custom calendar range. You would need to reannalyze the data for the custom period if you want the total number of visitors.
Webtrends tracks annual visitors based on calendar year. So a visitor in December 2005 and a visitor in January 2006 would be consider as different even if they use the same IP address, same browser, same cookie.
Custom comparative view would allow you to compare two custom periods.
All custom reports add only dailies.
A template is a collection of reports — i.e. executive, marketer’s and webmaster’s reports. The dashboard always starts with the default template but I can choose a different template if given access to more than one templates.
Dashboards are not exportable. Reports are exportable into Word, Excel, PDF, or CSV format. You need to install the WebTrends Report Exporter.
Recommendation: Allow sharing bookmarks only among people who are knowledgable about WebTrends to avoid having the bookmarks list be longer than the content list.
You can bookmark queries.
By default of SDC rotates log files hourly, meaning it creates 24 files per day; the recommendation is to change to daily.
Create unique data source per server but use more than once data source per profile. It is better to read the SDC log files from the WebTrends server rather than from the SDC server.
WT.sdl is used exclusively to track multiple links from the same page, i.e. WT.sdl=top would be added to the top link and WT.sdl=bottom would be added to the bottom link.