Digital publishing analytics

by MATEJ VIDMAR, EDITION DIGITAL

February 2016

Here’s a question for you: What provides invaluable insight into reader behaviour and reveals patterns that occur while they navigate through your digital edition, which you can utilise to optimise and improve your content, and predict what strategic moves will help attract even more readers? If your answer was a crystal ball, then you are partially right, but unfortunately they are hard to come by and it takes ages to master the art of clairvoyance so no gold star for you. However, if you’ve thought of analytics, then you’ve guessed it!

In their most simple form, analytics enable you to understand how readers experience your content and that’s something every content publisher, whose goal is to increase the number of his happy, returning readers, absolutely has to have in their toolset. That’s why Edition Digital ships with a versatile and easy to use analytics tool, which is specifically tailored to the needs of digital publishing.

To view analytics in the Edition Digital system, you’ll first need to pin-point the edition you’re interested in. That will easily be achieved by using the top menu’s Dashboard or My Editions links, where each edition is represented as a rectangle card that contains that edition’s basic info. If the edition in question was created recently, you’ll definitely find it on the Dashboard, where only the last few editions are displayed. However, the My Editions section is more practical when you're looking for an older edition because the layout is more compact so there’s room for more editions and we’ve also added a search facility with additional filters at the top of the section. 

When you spot the edition you want to examine, look at the bottom grey bar of that edition’s card where we’ve added supplemental buttons, one of which is Analytics. Now click that button to enter the Analytics section. If you find that the Analytics button is not present, you are looking at an edition that was never published and consequently there’s no data to analyse, so make sure you're looking for the correct (Live) edition.

Once you enter the Analytics section you will be welcomed by the Analytics Dashboard, which is a curated collection of various reports and charts taken from the section’s 4 main categories: Pageviews, Campaigns & Referrers, Engagement, Readers. Each of these categories covers a specific area of interest in more detail and you can delve deeper into each of these areas by using the left-hand sub menu.

By default the charts and graphs in the Analytics section will display all data that was gathered from the moment the edition was put live. Once the edition is Live for 90 days that will remain the default time span. However, you can be a bit more specific and select a time span, device type and campaign of your interest and all the reports will take that into account. You can do that at the top of the section where there’s a collapsible Filters panel; just apply the desired filters and hit the Apply filters button. In addition, you can also export the analytics data as a comma separated value or excel file. Simply click Export to excel or Export to csv buttons at the bottom of the filters panel.

Pageviews

When you want to know which page, or section, of your digital edition was the biggest hit and where your readers lingered the longest, which is a good indication of interest generating content, Page views is the place to go. Here you will find how many views individual pages and sections have gathered, the average time spent, and the percentage of users that have exited the edition from an individual page. All this information is located underneath each corresponding page thumbnail and reflects the specified time span. There’s also a switch that enables you to show or hide subpages. 

By clicking on Show Table underneath the page thumbnails, you will reveal a sortable list of all pages. Each page is represented as one row, which contains the following data: Page name, Pageviews, Unique pageviews, Average time on page, and Sum time spent.

Campaigns & Referrers

 

The line graph at the top of the page illustrates changes of daily reader response to the specified campaign over time as a series of data points connected into line segments. The data points become visible when you place your mouse cursor on any of the four available line segments: Campaign name, Campaign medium, Campaign source, Campaign content. Each of these can be selected in the “Show” section at the bottom of the graph.

By clicking on Show Table at the bottom of the line graph, you will reveal a sortable list of all campaigns. Each campaign is represented as one row, which contains the following data: Readers, Actions, Max. actions, Average time spent, Bounce rate.

Using this data you can quickly determine how efficient various marketing campaigns are. If you find your campaigns attract lots of readers, but lose their attention quickly, which results in a high bounce rate, this can mean the corresponding content is not generating interest with the target audience. 

Below the Campaigns line graph there’s also a table of referrers, which, in simple terms, is the webpage, blog, search engine, social network or any other location address on the world wide web, where readers clicked a link that sent them to your Edition. In other words, it’s the place where the reader was spending his time right before he landed on one of the pages of your edition. Referrer URLs are logged by many web analytics programs including Edition Digital Analytics, and enable you to monitor these URLs to get insight into where your reader traffic is coming from.

To do that you can use this sortable list of individual referrers that were tracked in the specified time span. Each referrer is represented as one row, which contains the following data: Readers, Actions, Max. Actions, Total time spent, Bounce rate.

Engagement

Edition Digital enables you to enrich your digital editions with elements like links, social share icons, Video, Audio, Galleries, Textboxes and others. All of these elements allow for varying degree of interaction, the details of which are revealed when you select any of the element types from the left-hand menu. This is where you’ll be able to see how many times a particular video was viewed, which links were clicked the most, how many times your edition was shared on various social networks and all that good stuff.

Readers 

 

This line graph on this page illustrates changes of daily reader visits over time as a series of data points connected into line segments. The data points become visible when you place your mouse cursor on any of the three available line segments: Readers, Unique readers, and Bounce. Each of these can be enabled or disabled in the “Select visible” section at the bottom of the chart. There’s also a neat feature called “Show trend for readers” , which will display a trend line that indicates the general pattern or direction of reader visits within the specified time span.

By clicking on Show Table at the bottom of the line graph, you will reveal a sortable list that displays individual dates when your edition was viewed in the specified time span. Each date is represented as one row, which contains the following data: Date, Readers, Unique readers, Average time on edition, and Bounce.

The reader analytics is segmented even further and enables you to analyse your readers behaviour based on the time, when they’ve read your editions, the operating system and browser they’ve used, the country they reside in, and basic information about the device they’ve used to view your edition. These additional reports become available in the left-hand menu once you select Readers.