To fur­ther build upon how to lever­age time based seg­ments in Dis­cover I have the fol­low­ing exam­ple busi­ness ques­tion and how one might go about answer­ing that ques­tion and tak­ing actions from the data.

Who are my vis­i­tors that pur­chased last month and have returned to the site this month, but not purchased?

The seg­ment needed to answer this ques­tion is fairly com­pli­cated.  I rec­om­mend read­ing Kevin’s recent post on Dis­cover AND/OR Seg­men­ta­tion, to bet­ter under­stand nest­ing con­tain­ers, which we will use a lot.  To begin cre­at­ing this seg­ment you must launch the Seg­ment Fil­ter Builder.  Now, let’s break­down the ques­tion above.

Vis­i­tors that pur­chased last month

1. In order to suc­cess­fully ana­lyze the group of vis­i­tors that pur­chased last month, we need all their vis­i­tor data, which means the first thing you will do is drag over the Vis­i­tor con­tainer onto the seg­men­ta­tion canvas.

2. The vis­i­tor must have had at least one visit last month, so you will drag over the Visit con­tainer and nest it within the Vis­i­tor container.

3. Next, “click here to define Visit”.  This is where we will define the time period that the vis­i­tor came to the site.

4. Within the rule list select the report “Date: Month” and select the month you want to define as last month.

5. Finally, since we are requir­ing the vis­i­tor to have pur­chased, you will drag over the Orders event con­tainer and nest it within the Visit con­tainer.  Your seg­ment should now look like the following.

Vis­i­tors that returned to the site this month

1. Adding on to the seg­ment above, we want a vis­i­tor to also have vis­ited the site last month, which means we need to nest another Visit con­tainer within the Vis­i­tor container.

2. As above, it is within this new visit con­tainer that we will define the date range, so “click here to define Vis­its” and cre­ate a rule where “Date: Month” equals the month you want to define as this month.

3. So that I can make sure that on the visit this month the cus­tomer expressed inter­est in pur­chas­ing I am going to add one more cri­te­ria to the seg­ment, that a Prod­uct View occurred on the visit.  To add this cri­te­ria drag over of the Prod­uct View event con­tainer and nest it within the Visit con­tainer for this month.

Vis­i­tors that did not pur­chase this month

1. Finally we need to ensure that we don’t include vis­i­tors that pur­chased last month and this month.  Click over to the Exclude seg­men­ta­tion canvas.

2. Drag over the Vis­i­tor container.

3. Drag over the Orders con­tainer and nest it within the Vis­i­tor container.

4. Since the order had to occur last month you will “click to define Orders”.

5. Add the rule where “Date: Month” equals your selected month.

6. Don’t for­get to save the seg­ment before you close the window.

If you are really famil­iar with seg­ment build­ing then you may have noticed that I could have sim­pli­fied the seg­ment.  I have cho­sen not to in this instance to make it eas­ier to fol­low the seg­ment cre­ation process.

So what now?  If you plan on using the infor­ma­tion you gather in Dis­cover from this seg­ment for tar­geted email remar­ket­ing then you may approach the analy­sis like the following.

1. Make sure the time period of your project includes both time peri­ods in your seg­ment.  In my exam­ple I would need to have the time period include both July and August, not just August.

2. Launch the report Site Met­rics > Visits

3. Expand the Chart Options so that you can change the gran­u­lar­ity to Month

4. Drag over the seg­ment you just created.

5. Drag over the met­ric “Prod­uct View” under the new segment

6. Break­down the sec­ond month you are ana­lyz­ing (in this case it is August 2010) by the Prod­ucts report (or some clas­si­fi­ca­tion of that report)

7. You may want to look for a prod­uct that you would want to fea­ture in an email and then break­down that prod­uct or group of prod­ucts by your report con­tain­ing unique user ID.  Now you already know the per­son is inter­ested in the prod­uct and that they have pur­chased recently, so they are more likely to pur­chase again.

To be able to pass these IDs on to your inter­nal team that man­ages email cam­paigns or to your email ven­dor you will want to first make sure that you have all the val­ues show­ing.  At the bot­tom of the report you will see “Show” and then a drop­down.  From the drop­down select the num­ber of val­ues you need.  Now that the report is set up per­fectly you can either copy the report to the clip­board (see the 5 Help­ful Dis­cover Tips post for details) or you can email the report using the enve­lope icon above the work­space.  Don’t for­get to save these reports as a project so that you can come back to the report and just change the dates in the seg­ment to get the data for the next time period.

I hope these exam­ples were help­ful and sparked ideas of your own on how you can use this func­tion­al­ity to per­form action­able analy­sis for your busi­ness.  As always, if you have any ques­tions or com­ments, feel free to leave them below.

James W
James W

Hi Laura any idea on when we will be able to do this type of analysis without a prescribed time frame (Day/week/month) i.e. latency tables? E.g. a vistor did X in a visit followed by Y in a visit in sequence across a time period Z but not necessarily in the same visit? Also the ability to capture session in time period Z before or after an event/activity in a given session? (As can be done in Omniture insight by customising a latency table to use session dimension instead of time/days)

Doug Smith
Doug Smith

I have no actual experience with Omniture ( I'm a NetInsight user) but had no trouble following the steps.

Jim Novo
Jim Novo

Excellent. Now we're really getting somewhere with "customer analytics" as opposed to "web analytics".