Sharing Calculated Metrics in Adobe Analytics
Over the past year, Adobe Analytics users have noticed that the product has moved to a different model for accessing/editing/creating analytics components such as Calculated Metrics, Segments, etc… In this post, I want to touch upon one aspect that has changed a bit – the sharing of calculated metrics.
Sharing Calculated Metrics – The Old Way
In the older interface of Adobe Analytics (pre version 15.x), it was common to create a calculated metric, then select multiple report suites and apply that calculated metric to multiple suites. For example, if you wanted to create a Null Search ratio, you would create the formula and then select your report suites and save it. Here is an example in which a few calculated metrics have been applied to thirteen report suites:
This approach would save you the work of creating the metric thirteen separate times, which could be a real pain, especially if you had hundreds of report suites.
However, employing this [old] preferred approach of sharing calculated metrics can actually make things a bit confusing when you switch over to the new version of Adobe Analytics. When using the new Calculated Metrics manager, the old approach will cause you to see the same calculated metric multiple times, since it shows all calculated metrics for all report suites in the same window. Here is how the same calculated metric looks in the more updated version:
In this case, you would see the same metric for as many report suites as it was associated with in your implementation. While you could keep all of these different versions, doing so presents the following potential risks:
- It can be confusing to novice end-users
- If someone makes a change to one of the calculated metrics (in one report suite), it can deviate from the others, so that you lose integrity of the metric across your implementation/organization
- If you want to make a change to a calculated metric in the future, you have to do it multiple times
In addition to these risks, in the newest version of Adobe Analytics, there are some cool new ways to share metrics that don’t require this duplication of the same metric hundreds of times.
Sharing Calculated Metrics – The New Way
If you were to make a new calculated metric now, using the latest version of Adobe Analytics, you could create the metric once and simply share it to all users or groups of users. Once you have created your metric, you use the share feature and select “All” as shown here:
Doing this allows you to see the calculated metric in every report suite, without having multiple versions of it. As shown here, you will still see the calculated metric when you click “Show Metrics” from within the Adobe Analytics interface:
Therefore, if you have twenty calculated metrics across fifty report suites, you would have twenty rows in your calculated metric manager instead of one thousand! This makes your life as an administrator much easier in the future.
Moving From The Old to the New
So what if you already have a lot of metrics and they are shown multiple times in your calculated metrics manager? If you decide you want to trim things down and go to the newer approach, you would want to do the following:
- I suggest creating a corporate login as outlined in this blog post. This is a centralized admin login that the core analytics team maintains
- Review all of your shared bookmarks and dashboards to find all cases in which calculated metrics you are about to remove are used
- Copy each of the existing calculated metrics using the corporate login ID (described in step 1) and share it across all or designated users
- Once this is done, you can delete all of the duplicate versions of the calculated metric
- Go back to the shared bookmarks and dashboards using the old version of calculated metrics and replace them with the newly created shared version
While this may take some time, it will free up time in the future, since it will minimize the number of calculated metrics you have to maintain in the long run. I also find that it is beneficial to periodically review all of your shared reports and calculated metrics and do a clean-up. This process forces you to do this and you may be amazed how many you have, how many you can remove and how many are wrong!