Analysis Workspace Fallout Reports
Yesterday, the Adobe Analytics team added a lot of cool new functionality related to Analysis Workspace. One of these additions was the addition of a Fallout visualization, which was previously available in the Ad Hoc Analysis product, but unavailable in Analysis Workspace. In this post, I will share some of my thoughts on this new visualization and how it can be used.
Fallout Report Refresher
Back in 2008, I blogged about how to use Fallout reports in SiteCatalyst, but a lot has changed since then! The concept of the Fallout report is that you add checkpoints to a report and Adobe Analytics will tell you what percent of your paths dropped off or continued from checkpoint A to B to C. Unfortunately, the traditional version of this report has many limitations:
- Fallout is limited to a finite number of checkpoints (normally four unless you pay for more)
- Fallout can only include values from one dimension. For example, if you are doing a fallout report for Pages, only pages can be used as checkpoints. Therefore, you cannot mix values from two different dimensions
- Fallout reports could only be used for Traffic Variables (sProps), so this might cause you to track data you have in Conversion Variables (eVars) in an sProp as well, just to see fallout. This sProp limitation also means that you could not add metrics (Success Events) to Fallout reports
- Checkpoint values in the Fallout report could not be grouped, so if you wanted to see a checkpoint in which either value A or value B was present, you would have to create a new sProp for that purpose, which creates a lot of unnecessary work
- Fallout reports are limited to one visit
So as you can see, traditional Fallout reports were useful, but had a lot of limitations. Most people got around these limitations, by using Fallout reports in the Ad Hoc Analysis (formerly Discover) tool. That was helpful, but it required the installation of a Java client and understanding how to use a much more sophisticated tool, which didn’t always appeal to casual analytics users.
Welcome to the Future!
But now, Adobe has brought the best of the Ad Hoc Analysis Fallout reports to Analysis Workspace, the new reporting/visualization interface that works for both casual and advanced analytics users. As you probably know, Analysis Workspace works natively in the browser, but packs the same punch as the Java-based Ad Hoc Analysis product.
The new Fallout visualization removes all of the previously mentioned limitations so you can:
- Have an unlimited number of checkpoints
- Include Success Events, eVars or sProps and mix and match them in the same Fallout report
- Group items together into one checkpoint
- View fallout across multiple visits
To illustrate this, let’s go through an example. Imagine that I want to know how often people come to the Analytics Demystified website, read one of my blog posts and then proceed to view a few of the pages that pitch my consulting services. In a normal Fallout report, this would be difficult because I would need to have some sort of “Page Type” sProp that had one value for all of my blog posts (i.e. Adam Blog Posts) and another value for all of my sales pages (i.e. Adam Sales Pages). That would require some manual tagging effort, but if I did that, I could see a fallout from Adam Blog Posts to Adam Sales Pages, but within a visit only.
Let’s see how I could do this using the new Analysis Workspace visualization. First, I would add the Fallout visualization to the canvas. Then I would drag over my Blog Post Views Success Event as a checkpoint like this:
So now we can see that about 93% of our Visits have people who view blog posts. Next, I want to limit the second checkpoint to only those who read my blog posts. To do this, I can simply add a segment to the second checkpoint. This is another thing that has never been possible in traditional Fallout reports. So I will add my “Adam Blog Posts” segment to the second checkpoint by dragging it next to the Blog Post Views Success Event (you will see a black bar) so it looks like this:
Now I can see that about 16% of all visits find their way to one of my blog posts. Next, I want to see what percent of those folks make it to one of my sales pages. To do this, I use the left navigation of Analysis Workspace to find the Pages dimension, click the arrow next to it and then find the sales pages. Here is what the left navigation will look like before you click the arrow:
Once you click, you will see your pages and can search for the ones you want:
Once you find the pages you care about, you can drag them over one at a time (or select multiple using Command/Control) and drop them next to each other. Combining them creates an OR clause so if any of those pages is viewed, the Fallout report will count it. Here is what it looks like after I dragged over three different pages:
So now I can see that I am not getting a lot of folks reading my blog posts to view my consulting sales pages (darn freeloaders!). Since my percent is lower than I’d like, in this case, I am going to start adding a call to action for my sales pages to the bottom of my blog posts (see below) and then check in a few weeks to see if this helps decrease this large drop-off…
Additionally, there are some settings associated with this report that you can tweak. Using the “gear” icon, you can choose whether you want to include All Visits as the first checkpoint, or exclude that and start my fallout report with the first checkpoint. You can also choose if you want to include Visits or Visitors in the report:
Here is what the report looks like if I uncheck the “All Visits” box:
But wait…there’s more. While we saw that we can add segments to checkpoints, there is much more you can do with segmentation and Fallout visualizations. First, you can add a segment to the entire workspace project which will impact all visualizations, including the Fallout report. For example, I can add my “Competitors” segment (which I get from DemandBase data) to the top of the project and see my data change like this:
Now I can see that instead of 16% of visits viewing my blog posts, I have 44% of visits viewing them (not cool guys!) and that very few of them view my sales pages, which is understandable. But to make this easier to see, I can alternatively drag this segment next to the All Visits area at the top of the Fallout visualization and see the Fallout report separately for each segment like this:
This is a much easier way to see the differences. You can add up to three different versions to the Fallout report, so here is an example if I wanted to view All Visits, US Visits and Europe Visits together:
So that is a quick tutorial on the new Fallout visualization. I hope it helps you see some of the power that now exists. To see some more cool ways you can use this new functionality, check out this blog post by Antti Koski and watch this YouTube video from Adobe. Enjoy!