Almost nine months into the Omniture acquisition, I thought it was time to start sharing some insights into HBX migrations to SiteCatalyst. In my role as team lead for the enterprise HBX migration team, I’ve had the opportunity to interface with many clients as they contemplate if and when they want to move to the SiteCatalyst platform. During these nine months we’ve solidified our migration program and learned a lot along the way, both from our new colleagues at Omniture as well as from those clients that were eager to be early adopters of the migration program.

Over the coming weeks and months I plan to cover topics that, based on experience to date, seem to be top of mind for most clients considering the move to SiteCatalyst. Some of these topics include:

  • What are some top considerations when planning for the HBX migration?
  • Omniture Report Builder – Trending reports with HBX and Omniture Report Builder
  • Segmentation – I use HBX Active Segmentation today, what will I use in SiteCatalyst?
  • Custom Variables – I use HBX Custom Metrics, what will I use in SiteCatalyst?
  • Campaigns – What are the differences in HBX and SiteCatalyst campaign tracking?
  • Client Services – What support is available to me as I migrate and beyond?

For this post, I’m going to recap what I see as the top reasons why you want to consider migrating to the SiteCatalyst platform. For those of you that haven’t had a chance to review the material on the previously published on our site, I encourage you to review it.
While there are many new or enhanced features in SiteCatalyst, based on feedback from migrated HBX clients, top features include:

Customizable Dashboards & Reports
We consistently hear from HBX migrated clients that the customizable dashboards and reports are a tremendous improvement over HBX and it allows the casual user to more effectively consume the information. Increasing user adoption of analytics is a common goal for many organizations and having a web analytics tool that helps facilitate this adoption is key to success. In addition to being able to build custom reports and dashboards right within the user interface, you can also have them scheduled for delivery. In the past, many of our HBX clients relied on Report Builder to build custom reports and schedule them for distribution. Much of this can now be accomplished right within the UI (for those Report Builder fans, we now have SiteCatalyst Report Builder available, which I will address in a future post).

Calculated Metrics
In addition to the flexibility of the custom dashboards and reporting, you also have the ability to create calculated metrics on the fly right within the user interface. While Omniture includes many of the key baseline metrics within the platform, there are often metrics that are specific to each organization. Within HBX, in order to create any calculated metrics, you would need to do the calculations in Excel often using Report Builder to access the web data. In SiteCatalyst, you can use the expression builder to build the calculated metrics and then use them in your custom reports.

Video Reporting & Mobile Tracking
I’ve grouped these two important features into one topic as they both represent newer functionality that are clients are beginning to leverage. With a recent release, the mobile tracking in SiteCatalyst is robust and we are already finding migrated clients taking action on analytics gleaned from their mobile visitors. While HBX has some video tracking, the video reporting in SiteCatalyst is extensive with native support for Flash and Flex, along with Windows Media Player, QuickTime and RealPlayer. In addition, Video engagement or milestone tracking is built into reports, enabling organizations to find sweet-spots for ad placement by seeing the most viewed sections of video.

SiteCatalyst Platform
I’ve referred to SiteCatalyst as the “SiteCatalyst Platform” earlier in this post. The reason for this is that SiteCatalyst is the underlying platform for many solutions that are built using the SiteCatalyst data. In addition to SiteCatalyst, we have Discover (Insight & Advanced Segmentation), Search Center (Keyword Performance), Test and Target (AB/MVT Testing & Behavioral Targeting), Survey (Real-Time Customer Feedback), newly launched SiteSearch (internal search) and finally Genesis (Plug & Play Application Integration).
We’ve seen many HBX clients express strong interest in Genesis as it allows them to easily integrate SiteCatalyst with other online-marketing applications (currently over 100 certified Genesis partners), which they may have struggled to do with HBX. With, your organization can gain a unified view of marketing activity.

Robust Online Training Videos, Knowledge Base, and Online Community
As you consider migrating to SiteCatalyst, training for your user base is certainly a key component to a successful roll-out. In addition to the live trainings offered by our training team, there are dozens of training videos available from right within the user interface. Topics include “Introduction to SiteCatalyst for HBX Users” to more advanced topics such as “Path Analysis”. Supplementing the training videos is the Knowledge base, which allows you to search the online help and supporting white papers. Finally, there is the online Community, which connects SiteCatalyst users to an online forum to ask questions and share best practices amongst their peers.

If you have not yet had an opportunity to see this functionality in SiteCatalyst, I encourage you to engage your account team or consider attending one of our upcoming Omniture Café’s . For those of you on the west coast, there will be a Café event in San Diego on September 30th, followed by an event on October 1st in Los Angeles. You can find details on these events as well as register here. Stay tuned as we’ll be announcing our next Café in New York shortly.

If you have questions on the HBX Migration Program, please contact your account team or feel free to send me an email at cridge at omniture dot com. Also, let me know if there are any topics you’d like me to cover in future postings.

Christian Ridge
Christian Ridge

Hi Darren, Great question and I'm pleased to hear your experience with SiteCatalyst to date has been positive. In my first post I mentioned the wealth of online resources within SiteCatalyst including the online training videos, Knowledge Base and Community Forum. I believe the Community Forum is exactly what you’re looking for as it is a forum for posting questions and answers from the Omniture online community of users. You can access the Omniture Forum from within SiteCatalyst and navigating to the Help>Community>Omniture Forum. From there you will find about a dozen different forum topics ranging from Omniture SiteCatalyst - General Questions, Implementation, and Advanced Tools and Analysis. You are able to post questions and receive answers as well as search previous posts. In addition, most likely of interest for larger organizations, you have access to a private forum that is available for all internal SiteCatalyst users at your company. I'm sure you'll find the Omniture Forum a valuable resource.

Loan Market Home Finance
Loan Market Home Finance

We have a heap of sites that we intend to move over from HBX. I attended the implementation trainging with James George here in MELBOURNE Australia this week, and I am encouraged by the gloabal view that SiteCAtalyst offers in relation to HBX. After testing the suite I can see the interfaces are simpler and way better response times, and can be fully customised using the eVars and sProps. My question is:: IS There a forum zone for posting q's and finding simple answers from other users? Darren

Christian Ridge
Christian Ridge

Jeremy, I agree that it's important that you do commit time and resources to your migration to SiteCatalyst. As with any successful analytics implementation, it's important to spend time defining your business requirements that will complement the Omniture Fusion Deployment Methodology. As part of the definition process, the Omniture Fusion approach with HBX migrations incorporates industry best practices along with any customization of your existing implementation that you wish to persist in your SiteCatalyst implementation. The deliverable from this Fusion process is a playbook that can be used by your technical team as a customized guide to the implementation. Depending on the complexity of your implementation and the resources you have available, we find it can take an average of 4 to 6 weeks for small to midsize sites and longer for larger, more complex sites. We encourage clients participate in the Omniture training courses as they’re planning for migration. The Implementation Training course can be helpful for your technical and business team members as it provides a fundamental understanding of the SiteCatalyst implementation. SiteCatalyst does allow for more customization and flexibility than the HBX platform. If you choose to take advantage of this enhanced flexibility, it does result in a more complex implementation than HBX, but the Fusion playbook deliverable should simplify this for your development team. I’ll speak in further detail regarding considerations when planning your migration in future posts.

John Stansbury
John Stansbury

We migrated soon after the VS acquisition and couldn't be happier with the decision. We got to stay with our established account team and got greatly expanded data and functionality to boot. My biggest concern at the time was the "loss" of Report Builder, but now that's available and works extremely well with SC data. Interestingly, I find myself using ReportBuilder a bit less frequently (with HBX it was pretty much the _only_ way I worked with the data) and am able to conduct more of the analysis within the SC UI.

Jeremy B
Jeremy B

Be aware, the transition is incredibly time intensive. Make sure you have available staff and time to go through all the training materials before implementation. Omniture is sooooo much more complicated to implement than HBX was. After transitioning, I really miss the simplicity of HBX. I wish Omniture staff had to go through this transition personally on a large site, I think they would come up with a different approach if they did.