Analysis Workspace Tips & Tricks To enable analysts, new users & executives to more confidently make decisions in Analysis Workspace

I'm new to Analysis Workspace - where do I start?

Check out our new user guide for Analysis Workspace, the primary reporting UI in Adobe Analytics. Then, continue to bolster your Analysis Workspace knowledge by reviewing our 2018 tips & tricks.

The rest of this page will build on the foundation set by both of those resources. The page is split into 3 categories: tips for Analysts, enabling New Users, and empowering Executives.

Tips for Analysts

Analyze more rows of data on a single screen with the View Density setting. Under Project > Project Info & Settings, you can choose between Expanded (the default), Comfortable, or Compact.

Freeform table columns can be either dynamic or static based the analysis you need to build. By default, columns will be dynamic, meaning they will show the top X dimension items and change with the reporting window.

It is always recommended to put data points in perspective to historical data, so that you don't leave your end users guessing whether a number is good or bad. In Analysis Workspace, there are several ways you can accomplish this.

  • Date comparisons can be added by right-clicking any metric column, allowing you to quickly compare data to a prior time period (e.g. WoW, MoM, YoY, etc). The comparison that is generated can also be edited, saved, and made public to be reused in other tables and projects. You can then share so that other users can easily add the metric to their analysis.
  • Use the Cumulative Average function to create a rolling average calculated metric. The rolling window is customizable within the function. Visualize the rolling average alongside actuals to get a more clear view of the data trend. BONUS: When using this calculated metric in a trended data table, it will flex if the granularity of the table changes (e.g. from day to week).
  • Take the concept of a bullet chart and apply it to a trended visualization with the Cumulative function. By applying multipliers within the calculated metric, you can create a target metric (applied to a historical time period) that can be plotted alongside current metrics. See below for an example of this tip applied to a Cyber Weekend analysis.

Find even more tips about calculated metrics at adobe.ly/aacalcmetrics.

Attribution IQ includes 10 rules-based attribution models to help you quantify the value of your marketing efforts & beyond. Metric attribution can be changed on-the-fly within freeform tables, or within calculated metrics. This makes it easier than ever to analyze participation metrics in Analysis Workspace. NOTE: Even if your organization is not provisioned for Attribution IQ, you still have access to first, last, linear & participation models.

Cohort Analysis is the ability to group your visitors based on a common behavior and then examine their retention and churn over time. Recent enhancements to Cohort include 1) Retention vs Churn, 2) support for multiple metrics and segments for inclusion/return criteria, 3) support for Latency Tables, 4) support for cohorts based on custom dimensions, and 5) support for rolling calculations. Learn more

A unique way that the inclusion/return segment capabilities have been applied is to gauge time between to specific events. The output of Cohort tables can be exported as well so that you can derive an overall average time between events.

Tips for Enabling New Users

When enabling new users, we’ve observed that training typically falls into 3 categories: how Adobe products work, what Adobe terminology means, and how your organization has configured Adobe Analytics.

Learning Adobe Products

Encourage new users to learn from in-product tips. These tips have been created by the Adobe Analytics product team to help spread product "how to" knowledge, as well as shine a light on less discoverable capabilities.

Emphasize project organization best practices with new users, starting with the concept of panels. Panels are often used to organize data & visualizations into analysis themes, data segments or time periods. Tips for working with panels include:

  • Expand the top panel in a project, and collapse the rest. This will improve project load time.
  • Add new panels with the + button, or from the left rail
  • Set "blank panel" as your default, so you can quickly see the possible analysis options
  • Right-click the panel header to add a description with context about the analysis to follow
  • Right-click the panel header to copy + insert a panel from one project to another
Learning Adobe Terminology

Teach users to lean-on drop zone guides. These guides help users more easily understand what each drag & drop action will do.

  • Blue guides are shown for valid actions, including Add, Replace, Filter By, and Breakdown.
  • Orange guides are shown for invalid actions, such as stacking two metrics on top of one another.

Show users how to master setting the right date range. Custom date ranges can be created for users to quickly apply to the panel calendar directly (or within any other drop zone). Emphasize the "Apply to All Panels" button so that they can ensure they are using the same reporting window across their analysis.

Learning Your Organization's Configuration of Adobe Analytics

Show users how to connect the dots between what is viewed on a page & the data that is collected with the Experience Cloud Debugger. The debugger allows users to inspect and debug Experience Cloud implementations, determine what dimensions/metrics are being collected, and translate the collected data to reporting. Protip: Authenticate at the bottom of the debugger to translate the results into your implemented SDR.

Add business value context with component descriptions. Help your users understand each component more fully by including useful descriptions with context such as when a component should & should not be used.

Descriptions for eVar, props, and success events are managed in the Analytics Admin console. Descriptions for segments & calculated metrics are managed through their respective Component Managers.

Organize components using tags and encourage your users to search by tags (# or click the Filter) to find what they need in the left rail. Tags are used to group related components. Tag examples include grouping by analysis need (e.g. Internal Search), business unit (e.g. Site Ad Team, Paid Search Team), or platform (e.g. browser vs mobile app components).

Add analysis context within visualization (or panel) titles & descriptions. Replacing the generic out-of-the-box titles is a must. Go a step further by adding descriptive titles, such as the business question that each visualization answers. Additionally, you can add more comprehensive descriptions directly below the title by right-clicking to edit the description.

Tips for Empowering Executives

Grab their attention with on-brand color palettes. Instead of using the out-of-the-box colors that are applied in Analysis Workspace, apply a color scheme that matches your organization's brand. You can choose from 5 Adobe-provided palettes or input a custom set of hex values.

When possible, put a number in perspective rather than show it in isolation. One way to do this is by showing a number as part of a whole. Below are 2 options for depicting parts-to-whole relationships:

  • In freeform tables, use the row setting option to adjust table percentages to be calculated by row, instead of column. This is particularly useful when you want to trend dimension items over time & see the increase/decrease from one to another. For example, depicting device type or marketing channel trends.
  • In stacked visualizations, use the 100% stacked visualization setting. This will normalize the graph so that the individual series add up to 100%.

Conditional formatting is a quick way & easy way to visualize if a number is good or bad. It can be turned on through the Column Settings gear. With the red-to-green shading in place, you can also remove column numbers & percentages to simplify what the end user needs to consume.

Enable Executive consumers to ask questions of the project & interact with it safely using dropdown filters. Dropdown filters give your end users a way to slice & dice the data shown in the project, without having to understand (or, mis-understand) the components in the left rail. You can build in as many dropdowns as you'd like, and base them on any component type. The most common types of dropdown filters are composed from dimension items (e.g. a list of Marketing Channels) or segments (e.g. Tablet Users, Mobile Phone Users).

Ready for more content?

Visit adobe.ly/aaresources for a full list of Adobe Analytics Spark pages & other helpful resources.

Created By
Jen Lasser