Adobe Dis­cover work often comes down to an exer­cise in the man­age­ment of sev­eral analy­sis tasks at once. In five tips I aim to show­case project effi­cien­cies and work­flow actions below the sur­face of typ­i­cal user inter­ac­tions. There are three levers at work: cus­tomiza­tion of the inter­face, menu options, and right click actions. Dis­cover users can cus­tomize their Dis­cover inter­face and quickly inves­ti­gate spe­cific data points with these agile actions.

1-Workspace Flow

Proper work­space area delin­eation and reports man­age­ment is a key project com­po­nent. Dis­cover users can break up analy­sis areas into defined named work­spaces with orga­nized groups of reports. Sin­gle reports can be copied or moved across work­spaces by right click­ing within a report tab. If a user right clicks on a work­space tab there are three options to ‘Rename Work­space’, ‘Close Work­space’, or ‘Dupli­cate Work­space’. The ‘Dupli­cate Work­space’ option can repli­cate all exist­ing report build work in a fresh work­space to make adjust­ments or apply dif­fer­ent seg­ment fil­ters. Dis­cover lends best to an exploratory approach and users gain effi­ciency advan­tages work­ing through data inves­ti­ga­tions in this same manner.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.1: Work­space Right Click Actions

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The sec­ond work­space option is to cre­ate a new work­space slate that is at first empty with­out any defined reports by click­ing the + tab to the right of any active work­spaces. A great num­ber of reports can exist within a sin­gle work­space, but it quickly can reach the point where not all the reports can be vis­i­ble in a work­space at once which requires user scroll efforts to reach a desired report. There­fore the rec­om­men­da­tion is to lever­age the abil­ity to cre­ate mul­ti­ple work­spaces and work through var­i­ous reports that hold the same analy­sis intent focus.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.2: Work­space Right Click Actions

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2-Folder Man­age­ment

The menu folder cus­tomiza­tion options are fea­tures of Dis­cover that exist with the Met­rics and Seg­ments Win­dows. The ‘Orga­nize Met­rics’ option is selected by click­ing on the small wrench icon within the Met­rics left side menu panel.  The ‘Orga­nize Met­rics’ win­dow allows for the build­ing of grouped met­rics along what­ever asso­ci­a­tions a user prefers. Given the vast amount of vari­a­tions on a per met­ric basis that open up with Dis­cover, the ‘Orga­nize Met­rics’ option can save sort­ing and search time to pull in fre­quently used met­rics within a pro­file. While the stan­dard non-editable cat­e­gories of met­rics will always exist and can­not be altered, the option to cus­tomize met­rics and cal­cu­lated met­rics within grouped fold­ers is a crit­i­cal orga­ni­za­tion feature.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.3: Orga­nize Met­rics Menu Option

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Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.5: Orga­nize Met­rics Menu Window

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The next aspect of Dis­cover fold­ers is the ‘Orga­nize Seg­ments’ option which can be accessed by click­ing on the small wrench icon within the Seg­ments left side menu panel. The ‘Orga­nize Seg­ments’ menu allows for col­lec­tions of seg­ments to be log­i­cally grouped and set together. By default there is a ‘Favorites’ folder out­side of the locked ‘Suite Seg­ments’ and ‘Pre-Configured’ fold­ers. It is rec­om­mended users orga­nize seg­ments on a func­tional basis, or on a per project basis to keep seg­ments acces­si­ble and in order. The pow­er­ful option to share Dis­cover seg­ments across an entire com­pany is also avail­able as an optional check box option within the ‘Orga­nize Seg­ments’ window.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.6: Orga­nize Seg­ments Menu Option

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Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.7: Orga­nize Seg­ments Menu Window

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3– Left Menu Win­dow Pane Cus­tomiza­tion & Report Hide Chart Option

Another aspect of deep cus­tomiza­tion is the lay­out of the entire left side Dis­cover menu. The Default View (1) lays out the ‘Dimen­sions’, ‘Met­rics’, ‘Seg­ments’, and ‘Granularities’/‘Date Ranges’ in descend­ing order. The lay­out can be wholly cus­tomized to only include the rel­e­vant analy­sis com­po­nents to a project. For exam­ple a col­lapsed view which pro­vides more cov­er­age for the main val­ues list can be cus­tomized via mov­ing the win­dows into a Nested View (2). The Cus­tomized View (3) option com­pletely hides spe­cific lay­out menu con­tent panes so that only the rel­e­vant val­ues are present. The power within this fea­ture is over the course of work users can shift their menu options to best meet their imme­di­ate needs in pulling data ele­ments. Users can always revert back at any time to the Default View (1) by select­ing the Window>Default View option from the top menu line in Discover.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.8: Left Menu Win­dow View: Three Cus­tomiza­tion Option [(1) Default View, (2) Nested View, (3) Cus­tomized View]

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A sim­ple action which can greatly improve the vis­i­ble data set range is to hide the main default Chart from a given Dis­cover report. Users can click and drag the four dot selec­tor beneath a chart upward and then the entire chart will be min­i­mized which expands the amount of raw data val­ues that are shown in the main table. Selec­tion of the same four dot selec­tor and drag­ging down will bring the chart vis­i­bly back. Often users in Dis­cover want to bridge data value sets and export to Excel; if this is the case then hid­ing the Chart makes get­ting a bet­ter ini­tial read on the data set easier.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 1.9: Step 1– Chart Hide Option User Action

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Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 2.0: Step 2– Data Table Only View (Chart Now Hidden)

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4– Trend Cell Right Click Action

The trend cell quick right click action allows for a sin­gle defined time range to be built into a new iso­lated trended report per user gran­u­lar­ity date para­me­ters. To ini­ti­ate a user must right click a met­ric cell within a report, then select the ‘Trend Cell menu option.  Next choose a defined date gran­u­lar­ity set­ting. A new trended report is then auto­mat­i­cally built and opened within the same work­space for user review. It is one of the best deep-dive on demand fea­tures in Dis­cover because it pro­vides fast side explo­ration of data trends and anom­alies with­out dis­rupt­ing the cur­rent report data view.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 2.1: Trend Cell Menu Option

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5– Col­umn Prop­er­ties Right Click Action

The next within report right click action is the sec­ond menu item ‘Col­umn Prop­er­ties’ which alters the for­mat­ting of a given met­rics col­umn in terms of val­ues shown and vis­i­ble blue bar graph indi­ca­tors. These options allow for users to do imme­di­ate switches and aug­men­ta­tion of raw met­ric counts to % of total val­ues. The ‘Col­umn Prop­er­ties’ can save users time through holis­tic iden­ti­fi­ca­tion of met­ric drops and spikes in con­junc­tion with the raw data counts for the period.

Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 2.2: Col­umn Prop­er­ties Menu Option

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Dis­cover Work­flow Tips 2.3: Col­umn Prop­er­ties Menu

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Con­clu­sion

The Dis­cover menu pane cus­tomiza­tion options and quick run actions can prove to be huge time savers over the course of analy­sis work. Users would be well served to keep these options in their back pocket as go-to meth­ods of adjust­ments dur­ing analy­sis efforts. It bears empha­siz­ing how an orga­nized and coher­ent Dis­cover project can ben­e­fit in repeat­able work, work tran­si­tions to other users, and estab­lished work approach. Dis­cover opens up a wide range of task flow capa­bil­i­ties and can bend to where users need to the tool to focus both short and long term.

Brian Au is a con­sul­tant in Adobe Con­sult­ing, focused on dig­i­tal strat­egy, ana­lyt­ics & opti­miza­tion for retail & travel clients. He tweets at @Bri­anAu.

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