Happy Holidays!

God Jul!

Merry Analyzing and Happy New Insights!

This year we’re celebrating by making a donation to UNHCR in Sweden.

In the illustration, made by Ola Skogäng, you can see the Outfox office (it’s the floor where the lights are on.)

Outfox + Optimizely

Last Friday Outfox went to Amsterdam to participate in a gathering for Optimizely’s partners. The meeting was successful in raising ideas on how to improve Optimizely to better help both end customers and partners developing the tool.

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Outfox Now Serves Award-Winning, Sustainable Coffee

Outfox is happy to be the first employer to sign a contract with Drop Coffee Roasters to offer high-quality coffee to its employees. It’s the coffee preferred by consumers with high demands and by chefs like Mathias Dahlgren. If you are a client of Outfox, or interested in becoming one, you’re also welcome to come by for a cup of really good coffee. If you like it, we’ll even give you a refill to go. We’re currently serving Wote and Mugaya. Yes, we have a barista too. Our analysts have many skills.

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Daniel Waisberg, Google, to speak at Google Analytics Conference in Stockholm

Daniel Waisberg is joining Sagnik Nandy as the second speaker from Google at the Google Analytics Conference in Stockholm, August 26, 2015.

Daniel is known for being an analytics advocate at Google as well as founder and editor of Online Behavior, a website about marketing measurement and optimization. He recently wrote the book Google Analytics Integrations.

At the recent, annual, Google Analytics Summit in San Francisco, Daniel had a fireside chat with Kerri Jacobs about the book. Almost everything said at the (invite only) conference was under a non-disclosure agreement. Outfox was there, and we enjoyed it a lot! While we can’t tell you about new features in Google Analytics right now, we hope you’ll get to hear about some of them directly from Google at our event in Stockholm in August. This year, the Stockholm conference will be held entirely in English.

Daniel Waisberg and Kerri Jacobs at the Google Analytics Summit in San Francisco 2015

Having said that almost everything was under NDA, Daniel’s talk about his book is available on his website, as the book is already public. If you want to read about the importance of data integration, and how to make it actionable, read the summary. Or even better, come to Google Analytics Conference in Stockholm, August 26, 2015, and ask Daniel your questions in person.

The contents of the book:
Google Analytics Integrations

Register

Don’t forget your Outfox discount
As an Outfox client you pay 2,990 SEK per ticket. Bring someone along and get an additional 500 SEK off per person. Just enter the code VIP Outfox in the comments field when registering.

Interview with Sagnik Nandy, Distinguished Engineer, Google

We are excited to announce that Sagnik Nandy is coming to Stockholm for the Google Analytics Conference, August 26, 2015. We decided to ask him a few questions about his work at Google, the direction Google Analytics is taking, and what he will be speaking about in Stockholm.

Can you explain why it’s important to understand the platform in order to understand the reports and the possibilities of Google Analytics?

RegisterI think understanding the platform provides two key advantages to using the tool:

1. It let’s you better understand how the “tool” you are using can be used and that let’s you use it to your fullest potential. Think of the platform as your programming language – the more you know it, the more you can use it to do awesome things and do them more elegantly.

2. It allows you to understand the nuances of the data and results you get back. The same question can be asked in slightly different ways and depending on the variation in which you ask you might be getting more insights and/or confidence in your results and the understanding of the platform aids that.

If you could change one thing about GA, what would it be?

Make it even more customizable. GA is very very powerful and already each user can make GA their very own experience. So on one hand you have small blogs with 10s of sessions using it to understand their traffic and on the other hand you have some of the biggest businesses in the World using it to optimize their revenue. I want us to invest more in how each of these use cases could make the product more customized for their perfect experiences even more seamlessly.

How does Google Analytics embody Accumulate, Analyze, Action?

We have been increasingly using these “3 As” as our driving philosophy to take the product forward. GA is fully focused in ensuring (i) you can gather all your marketing data easily and comprehensively in one place (ii) ask any questions/insights on this data and get back answers easily and (iii) use these answers to better your objectives and easily take actions.

What’s the nerdiest (a.k.a. best) use of GA you have seen?

Universal Analytics has lead to some really interesting use cases. There are quite a few – ranging from tracking coffee machines and correlating productivity to coffee consumption to tracking one’s pet dog – I think we have seen some really cool examples of how people can really leverage the UA platform.

Fire in the barn. You can only save one dimension, which one will it be?

How about I cheat a little and take Custom Dimensions? :) …and then use them to map all other dimensions to various custom dimensions!

Can you give us a little teaser about your upcoming presentation in Stockholm?

I hope to touch on two key topics that I am personally very passionate about – (i) Users and making the product increasingly user-centric and (ii) simplicity of use. Hopefully we will all have fun.

If you want to see Sagnik in action, check YouTube.

He’s not only very knowledgable in Google Analytics, but also a great actor and entertainer.


Sagnik Nandy is technical leader and manager of several Analytics and Reporting efforts in Google with a background in large scale distributed computing and data management and analysis. Hands on experience in building, scaling, deploying and managing several large scale systems used by millions of web sites around the world. Helped build and manage teams of 100+ engineers across multiple locations. Besides engineering and product, also actively involved in working with sales, marketing, support and clients.

Specialties: large scale distributed systems, web analytics, structured data analysis, query systems, online advertising and experimentation platforms.

Register

Don’t forget your Outfox discount
As an Outfox client you pay 2,990 SEK per ticket. Bring someone along and get an additional 500 SEK off per person. Just enter the code VIP Outfox in the comments field when registering.

How mature is the web analytics market in Japan now?

In 2007 Lars published some posts about web analytics around the globe on WebAnalysts.Info, and now it’s time for me to do a follow-up on Japan.

I packed my bags and went to Tokyo, where I met with Sumio Ebisawa from e-Agency as well as Satoshi Kono, Ryouhei Mitsuhashi, Satoshi Saeki and Masaru Yokoyama from Dentsu.
Google Analytics in Japan

Market maturity

When I asked how mature is the market for web analytics in Japan in 2014, Masaru Yokoyama replied, “A lot more mature now than back in 2007, but it still depends on the client.” Sumio Ebisawa told me that some of the companies in Japan don’t want to hire specialists, but rather use partners and consultants.

As a report from Dentsu states, a lot of companies now are spending more money in the digital space and that increases interest in analytics and performance-based marketing. Sumio also said that many clients want to learn more about web analytics, so they now have more courses than they used to have in web analytics.

Satoshi Saeki from Dentsu also told me that the biggest challenges right now are getting all the data in one place and implementing data management platforms. Agencies, publishers and marketers want to access their data quickly and easily, and they want all data in one place to make better decisions about media spend.
Google Analytics in Japan

Web analytics vendors in Japan

Google Analytics still seems to be the most common free solution in Japan. Back when we published the blog post in 2007, there was a solution called Visionalist that was made by Digital Forest, which was the number one vendor for premium customers. Digital Forest was acquired by NTT Communications (one of the world’s biggest telecommunication companies) and has now lost some ground compared to other vendors.

Now Google Analytics Premium is gaining ground, and Adobe holds a good position. For example, back in 2008, Yahoo! Japan implemented Adobe Analytics for its huge Yahoo! Shopping site, which was a major Japanese e-commerce destination.

So the development for Japan now looks a bit more like the rest of the world when it comes to vendors.
GA in Japan gajapan2

What has happened to the web behavior in Japan since 2007?

Yokoyama laughed and told me, “In 2007, there was no iPhone and there was no Facebook.” And that’s true.

Smartphone usage and social media are two of the biggest changes, not just in Japan. But there are some differences. The first one is the social network Line. Not many Swedes know about it, but if you are in Japan, you will see that almost everyone is using it. It’s a bit like Facebook Messenger, but with more smilies and emoticons and over 50 million users in Japan and 400 million worldwide. Because Line is a bit like a closed room where you can chat with your friends, it’s a challenge for marketers to take advantage of the platform.

And then there is mobile. Japan has always been known for its mobile use. Back in 2008 it was estimated that 31% of elementary school students and 58% of middle school students owned a mobile phone (or as they are known there, keitai), and many of them was accessing internet. Now there is a shift in the mobile phone market and smartphones are gaining compared to the old feature phones. In MM Research Institute’s “Trend and forecast of the smart phone market,” it is estimated that 45% of all mobile device subscribers have a smartphone subscription. But one should remember that the feature phone also is used to access internet.

So the land of the rising sun is in some ways different from us, but they are struggling with the same things as we are in Sweden and the rest of the world – making sense of data and taking action on it.

And one last thing, Google is not the most common search engine there: Japanese users loves Yahoo.

Dashboard reporting helps VisitSweden benchmark its markets at a glance

VisitSweden’s mission is to promote Sweden and strengthen the Swedish brand abroad, as well as drive business to the tourism industry. The website gives information about the country, things to do and how to get around.

vsFrom the website, the visitor can discover hotels and attractions and visit their sites to make reservations. VisitSweden’s target audience is a “progressive demographic” in selected geographical areas.

Make data easy to access and absorb

Much time was spent correcting for errors in editors’ reporting, and editors also found it troublesome to do all the steps necessary for reporting.

Sometimes incorrect segments were applied or incorrect date ranges were chosen, due to editors rarely using the Google Analytics UI. With large traffic volumes and big date ranges, a solution to avoid the UI’s data sampling – while still having access to it through a visual interface – was a must.

Customized dashboards using Google Analytics API

Outfox created customized dashboards using the Google Analytics API.

The employees can now log in to the dashboard and at a glance get an overview of the desired KPIs, unsampled. They can set goals and see how the resulting KPI compares to the goal KPI.

Conversions are measured with custom outbound link tracking on clicks. Metrics, such as visits and events, are fetched daily with an automated job using the Google Analytics API.

Each market has its own segment queries which, thanks to daily fetches through the API, do not hit the sampling limits.

“Thanks to the Outfox dashboard, we are now seeing a shift in how we act in our business, all the way up to top management. Finally, we are driven, not by guesses or whims, but by data.”

– Lars Näslund, Global Marketing Coordination Manager, VisitSweden

VisitSweden's dashboard

Increased interest in analytics improves decision making

Editors don’t have to spend time choosing the right profile, applying the correct segment, finding the correct time span.

Time is now better spent working to reach the goals or understand why KPIs underperform. By getting everything at first sight, the time required to start analyzing has decreased, and this has resulted in an increased overall interest in web analytics within the organization.

“Instead of spending time just finding the correct data, editors now have time to actually analyze the KPIs.”

– David Bustos, Research Coordinator Business Intelligence and Web Analyst, VisitSweden

Goals

  • Get an easy complete global overview
  • Obtain a per-market view of website performance using KPIs for benchmarking
  • Access unsampled data for KPIs

Approach

  • Google Analytics API is used daily to fetch data for a custom-made dashboard and to reduce sampling errors
  • Outbound link tracking for measuring conversion to partners
  • Survey for measuring visitor task completion rate, logging results using Google Analytics events

Results

  • Increased interest and knowledge in Google Analytics and web analysis amongst web editors
  • Local market editors can now set KPI goals and follow up on them in one quick glance
  • Headquarters can track all markets globally, with a unified view

About VisitSweden

  • Sweden’s official website for tourism and travel information
  • Co-owned by the Swedish Government and the Swedish tourism industry
  • www.visitsweden.com

About Outfox

  • Google Analytics Certified Partner
  • Outfox provides a wide range of Google Analytics services, focusing on all aspects of the product; technology, business, analysis, and development.
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