Adobe Analytics: How to Use Adobe Report Builder
When Adobe Analytics used to be Omniture, Report Builder was the easiest extension tool for pulling vast amounts of data more easily. Going into the actual UI for Omniture was a pain, especially when load times were slow and flipping through multiple reports for the same analysis. Now that Adobe’s amped up their UI game with Analysis Workspace, Report Builder’s been put in the back burner for many analysts.
What is Report Builder?
Report Builder is an Excel add-on, which you can integrate with your spreadsheets and automate using pivot functionalities. It looks like this…
Looks quite old school, right? Hasn't changed for years... It's actually very useful, so don't worry about the looks!
How do we use Report Builder?
This is the first step of Report Builder.
1. Choose your Report Suite
Very important to double check if you have way too many to choose from!
2. Choose one dimension (refer to the UI reports)
Be sure to choose the right report as metrics will only show if they're associated in Report Builder's Step 2 on the next page.
3. Select dates from rolling, preset, or fixed cells.
I like to use fixed cells and placing an automated formula for dates within the spreadsheet. This way, I don't need to keep going back into Report Builder setup to change the dates.
4. Choose your segments - you can overlap segments here to really pinpoint your data set!
Double check within your UI if it's the results you're targeting, then apply it to Report Builder - due diligence!
5. Specify granularity (aggregated, monthly, weekly, etc) - all done for you!
Now on to Step 2 of Report Builder! It defaults to the Pivot Layout - which is useful anyways. Just drag and drop!
1. Search or scroll through the metrics menu on the left. Drag and drop them into the metrics section.
You can modify to different calculated formulas, so take your pick! I usually just leave it as default.
2. Drag and drop more dimensions (other than what you selected in Step 1) to the row labels.
Click on the green hyperlinks to select which format you'd like the values to appear. You can also customize to a total list or apply custom filters within each value. The highlighted box indicates if you want to show the values, but still have the data in the background.
3. Click Finish.
4. If you haven't already selected where to place the data, there will be a pop-up to select one.
You can always go back to "manage" all of the reports you set up and edit accordingly...or just click the refresh button every time you need new data!
Now that it's populating Excel, you can go have fun with all the Excel functionalities. Create custom charts, calculations, and more! Here's where the creativity comes into play!
Why do we use Report Builder?
Pivot Table Functionality
As shown in the steps of how to use Report Builder above, it's quite easy to use the tool in Excel. Just simple drag and drops where you're walked through every single step.
There were literally only 5 steps on each page - very easy to set up all at once. Depending on how fast your computer is, of course!
You can customize almost every single element of the output, so you don't need to flip-flop through the reports within the UI. Though, this is a capability in both Analysis Workspace and Ad Hoc Analysis.
Automated, Scheduled Updates
Actually, Analysis Workspace has this too. However, the output remains different, which leads to Report Builder's winning characteristic...
But let's hold on that for now...
Report Builder can automatically send your custom reports to any email you'd like - as long as they have access to your report suites and segments. You can view and have scheduled reports...and maintain your design aesthetic!
...now for the winning characteristic...
Flexible Excel Customization!
Since Report Builder's sole purpose is to export the data in a specified format, you can easily use the output and edit it within Excel. It's just like any other data spreadsheet, but it's already cleaned up for you to how it's set up within Report Builder.
Attach some Excel charts.
If you don't like the Excel charts, make your own! Use Excel's shapes, tables, formulas to do whatever you'd like!
Because we're analysts, we're used to Excel's functionality, so it's much easier for us to play around with Report Builder than be stuck with a pretty interface with limitations. Creating a calculated formula just takes one query, and you're set!
Let us know about your experience with Report Builder! We're curious to know about your challenges. Contact us to help walk you through Report Builder and its specific use cases for our team!