Although we might not like to admit it, we can’t possibly live our lives comfortably while also trying to manually keep track of every key metric, dimension, and segment combination. I think we’ve all probably had moments where we saw some data and told ourselves “I should have caught that sooner.” Maybe we beat ourselves up over it, but the truth is that we always have too much on our plate.
One of my favorite features in Adobe Analytics has always been the Alerts functionality. When I was working client-side and had the day-to-day responsibility of managing analytics across multiple domains, it was very hard to keep track of everything going on so I set up a flurry of alerts. Everything from the critical (revenue has tanked!) to the newsworthy (this was our 3rd highest traffic day in history!).
But the truth was there was a lot to be desired. For one, I had to create a lot of distinct alerts (I had to document these offline) and management was difficult, especially when someone else wanted to be added to a distribution. I also received a lot of false alerts, and sometimes missed alerts. When something new launched you might expect a lot of alerts to fire, and then you might miss alerts. What good are alerts if you’re ignoring them?
Enter Intelligent Alerts! One of the great new functional improvements that Adobe made part of their Analytics October release.
Right off the bat, the experience immediately feels more at home with what you are used to managing segments and metrics. But the enhancements go way beyond the look and feel.
Previously to set up alerts, you had to come up with an (let’s face it) arbitrary threshold from which to define them. A 10% traffic change? Is that significant? Just one reason why not all alerts panned out to be that important. With this new version, anomaly detection is built in, and in addition to setting up threshold based on raw or percentage changes, you can also only alert when an anomaly is detected at a particular significance. So when you get an alert, you know it will be significant (or have a 95% chance of being significant)!
In addition to better thresholds, Intelligent Alerts also tackles the aspect of having a large number of alerts as you can now trigger an alert off of any one of a group of metrics. For instance, you want an alert to trigger if your site traffic changes (either page views, visits, or visitors), and you can do that in a single alert. Or you can base a revenue alert off of Gross Revenue, AOV, or RPV. You get the idea.
The final aspect I really love relates to management of alerts. Once you start reaping the benefits of alerts, you’ll suddenly start realizing how you lived without them. But perhaps some of these alerts are meant to be temporary, like when a specific marketing campaign is going out or a new launch is on the horizon and you’d like to set up extra sensitive alerts during that time frame. You can now set up an expiration date so that the alert will not go on indefinitely. Huge administrative benefit.
So what are you awaiting for? Start setting up some alerts today and instantly gain better peace of mind.