Incrementor Events [Inside Omniture SiteCatalyst]
A while back, I discussed Success Events which are part of the Conversion area of Omniture SiteCatalyst. More recently, in the Products Variable post, the term Incrementor Event surfaced. In my experience, many Omniture clients are not familiar with Incrementor Events, so I thought I would spend a few minutes explaining what Incrementor Events are and how they can be used.
Understanding Incrementor Events
I find that the most difficult part of understanding Incrementor (you may also see it referred to as Incrementer) Events is getting over their name! I am not sure how the name came to pass, but I find it confuses many clients so I prefer to simply focus on what they do, memorize the name and move on! The purpose of Incrementor Events is to provide a way to pass a currency or numeric value of your choosing to a Success Event as a metric. For those of you who have been reading the blog for a while, you will know that normal (Counter) Success Events move up one value (notice I resisted the urge to say increment!) each time the Success Event is set. For most Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) that is what you want to happen, but there are times when you want to pass a numeric value to Omniture so that it can be totaled as a metric in reports and in calculated metrics. This functionality is similar to what clients use the Revenue metric for through the use of the purchase event.
So when would you want to use an Incrementor Event? In the Products Variable post we saw an example where the client wanted to capture a Shipping Cost associated with an order separate from the Revenue metric. The following are some other example uses of Incrementor Events:
- Pass Tax information as a distinct metric from Revenue
- Capture a Discount Amount as a distinct metric from Revenue
- Capture a page value or score
- Pass estimated Advertising Impression Revenue to an “Ad Revenue” metric separate from Revenue generated by product sales
Enabling Incrementor Events
So how do you enable Incrementor Events? Like other Success Events, you enable Incrementor Success Events through the Administration Console. Simply open the Success Events definition page, click the “Add New” link after your last Success Event, enter a Success Event name and then choose the Event Type drop-down box as shown here:
When selecting the Event Type, even though there are several choices, the main ones used are Counter, Currency and Numeric (for now, you can ignore the options with no subrelations). Counter Events are the default and used for most Success Events. Incrementor Events are created when you select either Currency or Numeric. As the names indicate, you select Currency if the values you will be passing are related to Currency, otherwise you select Numeric. The only difference between the two is that Currency Incrementor Events have the Currency settings associated with the report suite applied to them (i.e. show localized currency symbol in reports and have currency conversion applied if appropriate).
Important Things To Know About Incrementor Events
The following are some important things to know about Incrementor Events:
- Incrementor Events are normally set from within the Products Variable (see previous post for syntax)
- Most metrics passed into the Conversion area through Data Sources are passed to Incrementor Events (I will cover Data Sources in an upcoming post)
In this week’s real-world example, we will show how a banking subsidiary of Greco Inc. uses an Incrementor Event. In this scenario, the bank would like to understand the value of home loan mortgages site visitors are requesting so they can compare it to the loan amounts that are ultimately provided. For example, if it is the case that the bank consistently ends up loaning out 79% of the amount of home loans that are requested online, it can use this information for future estimates.
During the loan application process, applicants fill out a form and are required to enter a loan amount as shown here:
Greco Inc. would set-up an Incrementor Success Event (Currency) as shown above and use the Products Variable to pass the Requested Loan Amount to the Incrementor Event using the following syntax:
Now that the Requested Amount values have been captured in an Incrementor Success Event, the bank is ready for step two in which they import the actual amount of loans that were made to customers. Since the actual Loan Amount is not known during the online session, Greco Inc. uses Omniture SiteCatalyst Data Sources which is a tool that can be used to import non-website metrics into SiteCatalyst (I will cover Data Sources in greater detail in a future blog post). For now, all you need to know is that Greco Inc. will import all closed loan amounts and associate them with the Product for which the loan amount is related. As was mentioned above, metrics imported through Data Sources must be set-up as Incrementor Events so Greco Inc. would create a second Incrementor Event (Currency) and then use Data Sources to upload the data.
When all of this is completed, Greco Inc. can create a calculated metric that divides the two Incrementor Event metrics and then view all three metrics by Product in the Products report as shown here:
Have a question about anything related to Omniture SiteCatalyst? Is there something on your website that you would like to report on, but don’t know how? Do you have any tips or best practices you want to share? If so, please leave a comment here or send me an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will do my best to answer it right here on the blog so everyone can learn! (Don’t worry – I won’t use your name or company name!). If you are on Twitter, you can follow me at http://twitter.com/Omni_man.