I have observed that Adobe Dis­cover at times opens up such a wide range of options that a num­ber of the advanced fea­tures do not stand­out to users. In the below three cases I aim to high­light sev­eral of these advanced tech­niques through a walk­through of the tool access steps and poten­tial busi­ness appli­ca­tions. Dis­cover users that lever­age these capa­bil­i­ties can pull in more advanced insights into their report­ing and analy­sis within the same famil­iar workflow.

Vis­i­tor Par­tic­i­pa­tion Metrics

The first advanced fea­ture show­cases the vis­i­tor analy­sis capa­bil­i­ties avail­able within Dis­cover. The enable­ment of visitor-based par­tic­i­pa­tion met­rics allows for true cross-visit views across a vari­ety of report types. The way vis­i­tor par­tic­i­pa­tion attri­bu­tion works is Dis­cover spreads con­ver­sion credit across all pages and vis­its within the given report­ing time frame to matched vis­i­tors. Vis­i­tor par­tic­i­pa­tion met­rics in Dis­cover are auto­mat­i­cally avail­able for all stan­dard and cus­tom events and appear within the events list in the main Met­rics selec­tion window.

In the first exam­ple I will work within a Mar­ket­ing Chan­nel report by attrib­ut­able rev­enue in the period. The ini­tial analy­sis step is to cre­ate a cal­cu­lated met­ric that divides the base met­ric rev­enue by the rev­enue (vis­i­tor par­tic­i­pa­tion) met­ric. The new cal­cu­la­tion then pro­vides a % ratio that can be sorted by low and high influ­enc­ing touch points.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.1: Cal­cu­lated Met­ric Build Details of Rev­enue % Share of Rev­enue (Vis­i­tor Participation)


In the full report exam­ple below ‘Rev­enue Vis­i­tor Par­tic­i­pa­tion’ and ‘Rev­enue % of Rev­enue (Vis­i­tor Par­tic­i­pa­tion)’ are brought into the Mar­ket­ing Chan­nel report. The vis­i­tor par­tic­i­pa­tion met­rics illus­trate touch points that lead to pur­chase con­sid­er­a­tion and con­ver­sion. In the con­text of ‘Rev­enue Vis­i­tor Par­tic­i­pa­tion’ full rev­enue credit is given to every mar­ket­ing chan­nel that was bound to a vis­i­tor in the time period before con­ver­sion regard­less of end attri­bu­tion set­tings. It allows users a com­par­i­son view to eval­u­ate which mar­ket­ing chan­nels are assist­ing at a high level, but also giv­ing up end credit attri­bu­tion to other channels.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.2: Mar­ket­ing Chan­nel Report with Rev­enue, Rev­enue (Vis­i­tor Par­tic­i­pa­tion), and Rev­enue % Share of Rev­enue (Vis­i­tor Participation)


Seg­ments Within Cal­cu­lated Met­rics

The sec­ond advanced tech­nique touches on the Cal­cu­lated Met­ric build options in Dis­cover that can bring in seg­ments. The abil­ity to add seg­ments to cal­cu­lated met­rics opens up fur­ther com­par­i­son oppor­tu­ni­ties and saves time by allow­ing for the break­down of analy­sis ques­tions direct within Dis­cover. I will walk through two exam­ples where the appli­ca­tion of a seg­ment within a cal­cu­lated met­ric proves invaluable.

The ini­tial gen­eral step is to access the Cal­cu­lated Met­rics Builder by click­ing on the wrench icon in the upper right hand cor­ner of the main Met­rics selec­tion win­dow. A Cal­cu­lated Met­rics Builder win­dow will pop up next with a blank slate to pull in avail­able met­rics and seg­ments to cre­ate a new cus­tom for­mula based met­ric. Please note to pull in seg­ments as a com­po­nent to the cal­cu­lated met­ric it is nec­es­sary to tab over from the met­rics options tab to the seg­ments option tab in the upper left hand cor­ner of the Cal­cu­lated Met­rics Builder window.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.3: Cal­cu­lated Met­ric Builder Tool


The first exam­ple uti­lizes the ‘Vis­its from Social Sites’ Site­Cat­a­lyst v15 suite seg­ment and shows how a cus­tom cal­cu­lated order con­ver­sion rate can be derived for only social site vis­its. The main steps are twofold; bring in the desired met­rics within the cal­cu­la­tion (orders divided by vis­its in this exam­ple) and then under­neath each met­ric com­po­nent bring in the desired segments.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.4: Vis­its from Social Sites Con­ver­sion Rate Cus­tom Cal­cu­lated Metric


As you can observe in the end below report, we can now slot a wholly con­tained social sites order con­ver­sion rate right next to our over­all site con­ver­sion rate and even per­form direct cal­cu­la­tions within the same work­space. The addi­tion of seg­ments within cal­cu­lated met­rics can be a sig­nif­i­cant time saver in build­ing reports and run­ning comparisons.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.5: Vis­its from Social Sites Con­ver­sion Rate Comparison


The sec­ond exam­ple illus­trates a mixed appli­ca­tion of a sin­gle seg­ment within the Cal­cu­lated Met­rics Builder. The abil­ity to attach a sec­ondary seg­ment con­di­tion to a met­ric allows for effi­cient for­mu­la­tion of % of total cal­cu­la­tions for seg­ments of inter­est. In order to cre­ate a quick % of total cal­cu­la­tion we can bind a seg­ment to the denom­i­na­tor por­tion only of the cal­cu­la­tion; leav­ing the numer­a­tor rep­re­sen­ta­tive of entire site totals.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.6: Tablet % of All Mobile Views Cus­tom Cal­cu­lated Metric


We can observe that in the time frame tablet traf­fic is by far the dom­i­nant mobile views device type for the site. Given the mul­ti­tude of options in seg­ment build cre­ation; the ease of enhanc­ing cal­cu­lated met­rics shows through in these spe­cific applications.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.7: Tablet % of All Mobile Views


Time Prior To Event

I also want to empha­size the enhanced power of new Site­Cat­a­lyst reports that become avail­able in the Dis­cover work­flow. A great exam­ple is the new ‘Time Prior To Event’ report which Ben Gaines intro­duced in recent Site­Cat­a­lyst release notes (A new lens on cus­tomer behav­ior: Time Prior to Event report and more); which car­ries sev­eral enhance­ments in Dis­cover. You can access the Time Prior To Event in Dis­cover by nav­i­gat­ing within the report selec­tion menu to ‘Reports>Paths>General>Time prior to event’. The report pro­vides all the same great insights as the Site­Cat­a­lyst ver­sion, but in Dis­cover one added ben­e­fit are the blue bar scales visu­ally high­light dif­fer­ences across met­ric types by time prior band range.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.8: Time Prior To Event Report in Discover


The visual pro­por­tion cues within Dis­cover allow for quick exploratory data reads by swap­ping in dif­fer­ent seg­ments. An enhance­ment to the base report in Dis­cover is the abil­ity to com­pare seg­ments head to head at once. The report gains value in Dis­cover with this flex­i­bil­ity because users can effi­ciently fine tune dif­fer­ent prop­er­ties of the seg­ment to deter­mine low and high per­form­ing seg­ments of inter­est on the fly. We can observe in the below report that in the time frame ‘Direct (Typed/Bookmarked)’ ver­sus ‘Nat­ural Search’ traf­fic show com­mon pat­terns and vari­a­tions in time prior to event in the con­text of sev­eral key shop­ping user actions.

Dis­cover Advanced Tech­niques 1.9: Time Prior To Event Report with Mul­ti­ple Segments



Dis­cover users can lever­age advanced fea­tures to bring in spe­cial attri­bu­tion pro­fi­cien­cies, sophis­ti­cated cal­cu­lated met­rics, and fur­ther enhance­ments to the lat­est Site­Cat­a­lyst v15 report releases. The fluid nature of the Dis­cover work­flow and Cal­cu­lated Met­ric Builder are great assets that power users should take advan­tage. I hope the reviewed advanced exam­ples have high­lighted start­ing points for users to make the most of their Dis­cover analy­sis projects.

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