Con­sid­er­a­tions for Migra­tion
It’s taken longer than expected for my sec­ond post as the team has been extremely busy with an influx of migra­tions. Many of our clients (non-ecommerce) are using the final months of the year to com­plete their migra­tion to Site­Cat­a­lyst so they can begin day one of 2009 with their new ana­lyt­ics tool. In this post, tim­ing is one of the con­sid­er­a­tions I’m going to address when plan­ning your migration.

Iden­tify Stake­hold­ers
The first con­sid­er­a­tion when plan­ning your migra­tion is to iden­tify the inter­nal stake­hold­ers that will be crit­i­cal to the suc­cess of the tran­si­tion. A project owner should be named to take the lead for the dura­tion of the migra­tion. The project lead will be respon­si­ble for man­ag­ing the project and serv­ing as the pri­mary point of con­tact within the orga­ni­za­tion to help facil­i­tate com­mu­ni­ca­tion. In addi­tion to the project lead, there should be stake­hold­ers from the busi­ness and tech­ni­cal teams, which should include executive-level sponsors.

Deter­mine Tim­ing
Once you’ve iden­ti­fied your inter­nal migra­tion team, you’ll want to dis­cuss opti­mal tim­ing of the migra­tion. You’ll want to be mind­ful of sea­sonal peaks in your busi­ness. For exam­ple, if you’re an online florist retailer, you won’t want to be rolling-out your new Site­Cat­a­lyst imple­men­ta­tion dur­ing the Valentine’s Day hol­i­day period. If you’re a sports media site, you won’t want to deploy Site­Cat­a­lyst dur­ing March Mad­ness. Other tim­ing con­sid­er­a­tions include upcom­ing site updates/redesigns. We’ve had many clients piggy-back their ana­lyt­ics migra­tion on much larger site projects, which has helped in reduc­ing any push-back from tech­ni­cal teams as the Site­Cat­a­lyst tags can be imple­mented with lit­tle addi­tional effort dur­ing over­all site changes.

Gather Require­ments
If you haven’t already, you’ll hear all about Omniture’s Fusion Method­ol­ogy for imple­ment­ing Site­Cat­a­lyst when speak­ing with your account team on the details of the migra­tion pro­gram. Omni­ture Fusion is an indus­try spe­cific (retail, finan­cial ser­vices, media, travel, and oth­ers) method­ol­ogy for imple­ment­ing Site­Cat­a­lyst that incor­po­rates the fun­da­men­tals that each ver­ti­cal indus­try should be track­ing along with your own Key Busi­ness Require­ments (KBRs). The ben­e­fit of the Fusion Method­ol­ogy is that it pro­vides a com­plete action­able imple­men­ta­tion out of the gate and results in a much shorter time to achieve your return on investment.

As I men­tion, this method­ol­ogy will incor­po­rate your KBRs, which we will be review­ing dur­ing one of the ini­tial kick-off calls with your account team and migra­tion tech­ni­cal con­sul­tant. Prior to these calls, it’s impor­tant to have dis­cus­sions with your inter­nal stake­hold­ers to iden­tify your KBRs. When iden­ti­fy­ing your KBRs, it’s impor­tant to under­stand the key suc­cess met­rics for your site, which may dif­fer for each orga­ni­za­tional depart­ment. For a finan­cial ser­vices com­pany, KBRs may include increas­ing your con­ver­sion rate of leads to credit card appli­ca­tion com­ple­tions by 5% in 2009. Another group within a finan­cial com­pany may have a KBR to increase their cus­tomer online self-service usage by 10% in 2009. You might want to check out these blog posts that touch on key met­rics and con­sid­er­a­tions when deploy­ing an ana­lyt­ics program.

Iden­tify Gaps
Many of our clients are using the migra­tion as an oppor­tu­nity to revamp their ana­lyt­ics pro­gram. As part of this revamp, it’s impor­tant to iden­tify gaps in your cur­rent implementation/reporting that can be addressed dur­ing the Site­Cat­a­lyst imple­men­ta­tion. These gaps may become appar­ent through your ini­tial require­ments gath­er­ing or they may be gaps that have been out­stand­ing for some time. Some of the gaps our clients have iden­ti­fied most fre­quently include:

  • Lim­ited abil­ity to cor­re­late variables
  • Inabil­ity to cre­ate cus­tom dash­board and set-up for auto­mated deliv­ery within user interface
  • Lim­ited auto­mated cam­paign track­ing — HBX requir­ing cam­paign set-up within inter­face for each cam­paign ver­sus auto­matic track­ing with Site­Cat­a­lyst (more on dif­fer­ences in cam­paigns in sub­se­quent post)
  • Lack of plug and play third party inte­gra­tion with part­ners such as Dou­bleClick, Epsilon and many others
  • Inabil­ity to upload meta­data for vari­ables such as com­merce and cam­paign data
  • Lack of auto­matic alert­ing when key met­ric moves above or below a threshold

Busi­ness Jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for Migra­tion
For some of our larger clients, we’ve found that the busi­ness spon­sors have been asked by their inter­nal teams to pro­vide busi­ness jus­ti­fi­ca­tions for the migra­tion to Site­Cat­a­lyst. Once the gaps in your cur­rent ana­lyt­ics pro­gram have been iden­ti­fied, these should feed into the jus­ti­fi­ca­tion for the migra­tion. To recap, some of the most com­pelling jus­ti­fi­ca­tions to migrate include:

  • Empow­er­ing a larger audi­ence of busi­ness users to make deci­sions on action­able data through the sim­pli­fied user inter­face and cus­tomiz­able reports and dashboards.
  • Abil­ity to inte­grate your ana­lyt­ics with a test and tar­get­ing solution
  • Opti­miz­ing your search mar­ket­ing spend through the inte­gra­tion of ana­lyt­ics with a search opti­miza­tion tool — Omni­ture SearchCenter
  • Online mar­ket­ing integration/optimization with your other online mar­ket­ing part­ners through Genesis
  • Increas­ing effi­cien­cies as the web report­ing role evolves to true web ana­lyst role as reg­u­lar report­ing is auto­mated freeing-up time for deep-dive ad hoc analysis.

In my next post I’ll be dis­cussing options for access­ing and trend­ing his­tor­i­cal infor­ma­tion post migra­tion. As you may know, the annual Omni­ture Sum­mit is right around the cor­ner. The North Amer­ica Sum­mit will be held in Salt Lake City, Utah Feb­ru­ary 17 — 20. For HBX cus­tomers, we’ll be host­ing a spe­cial migra­tion ses­sion dur­ing the after­noon of the 17th. Dur­ing this ses­sion we’ll be cov­er­ing more details on the migra­tion pro­gram and will have clients that have already gone through the migra­tion share their key learning’s. We’ll have fur­ther details on the spe­cial HBX migra­tion ses­sion shortly. Finally, if you haven’t already had a chance to down­load the “Mov­ing to Site­Cat­a­lyst Guide”, I encour­age you to take a moment and down­load the guide located on the HBX User Inter­face login screen. If you have ques­tions on the HBX Migra­tion Pro­gram, please con­tact your account team or feel free to leave a com­ment. Also, let me know if there are any top­ics you’d like me to cover in future postings.


Christian – will there be other options for the migration session during the week of the Summit? I'll be attending with a few colleagues and we have registered for training on 17th, 9:30-5.

John Stansbury
John Stansbury

The benefits of migrating far outweigh any perceived disadvantages. Even the "historical data" argument loses air given the drastic and rapid changes in the economy--what happened in the last three months says a whole lot more than anything a year or two ago. The Fusion methodology really did ease the migration, and yes, ReportBuilder works just as well in SiteCatalyst; however, you'll find that you probably won't need it as much.