Summer Updates to Analysis Workspace

By now, thousands of you have had the opportunity to explore the new Analysis Workspace that we introduced in our web UI as an open (“public”) beta back in March. The feedback so far has been both positive and productive. If you’ve used Analysis Workspace and haven’t taken the time to give us feedback using our product forums, I invite you to do so. It is always tremendously helpful, and directly contributes to a better product and, consequently, better analysis and insights!

When we released Analysis Workspace and its initial, flagship tool, Freeform Analysis, we promised that additional features and tools would be coming in quick succession. Today I am pleased to inform users of Adobe Analytics that our Summer 2015 release, available on 18 June 2015, includes a number of those commonly requested features. (As a bonus, my colleague Justin Grover and I have been recording short videos to show off and provide basic training on various aspects of Analysis Workspace. I’ve included links to those videos below. You can also subscribe to us on YouTube.)

Here’s what we’ve added for the release:

Flexible layout [watch on YouTube]
This one is my personal favorite, I think. When working in a project, you can now drag to resize and move around project components (data tables, graphs, etc.). You can do this at any time, as you are working on your analysis. It allows you to create a dashboard-like layout made up of interrelated components. Here’s a neat example that shows off the increasing flexibility of Freeform Analysis:

Permissions improvements [watch on YouTube]
Analysis Workspace access can now be granted to non-admins through the user group permissions area in the Admin Console. We’re working on future improvements that are designed to make these projects even easier for non-analysts or new analysts to consume and explore, but in the mean time you can open access to other users in your organization using simple permissions in the Admin Console.

Support for calculated metrics
With the release of our new updated calculated metrics functionality, including the ability to embed segments and statistical functions in calculated metrics and share them with individuals or groups, Analysis Workspace and Freeform Analysis now fully support the use of calculated metrics. You can use them in your projects just like you would use a standard metric. Drag, drop, and done.

CSV export [watch on YouTube]
You are now be able to export a data table or series of data tables in CSV format on an ad-hoc basis. We started with CSV export because it is the most useful format of export, since it is so easily importable into Excel, R, etc. In the near future, we plan to add more formats, as well as robust scheduling.

Additional visualization types [watch on YouTube]
Another area where we plan to add many more options, we continue to work our way through the most common visualization types. Our initial release offered simple bar and line graphs; this release includes donut charts, area charts, and horizontal bar charts.

Apply segments to entire panels [watch on YouTube]
A fairly basic but critical improvement, Freeform Analysis now gives you the ability to apply a segment (or multiple semgents) to an entire panel of data, so that it applies universally to all data tables and visualizations in that panel. This is essentially how segmentation in Reports & Analytics works today; you apply a segment, and it applies to the entire report. Freeform Analysis already gave you the ability to apply segments more granularly—to individual rows and columns—but sometimes you want more general segmentation.

Breakdown improvements [watch on YouTube]
You can now break down multiple line items in a dimension with a single drag and drop. Simply select the rows you want to break down, then drag and drop the breakdown dimension anywhere on the selected line item values. Each selected item will be broken out for deeper analysis.

Selective visualization [watch on Youtube]
Sometimes you don’t want to graph the top five or eight or 10 items in a table of data. You want to graph items 11-20, or items #1, #4, and #9, or etc. Freeform Analysis now allows you to click to select individual rows or cells and then instantly reflects your selection in any visualization associated with your data table.

These are the major improvements to Analysis Workspace and Freeform Analysis, but there are also dozens of other minor improvements and bug fixes. If you tried Freeform Analysis earlier this year but haven’t used it recently, I hope that you’ll try it again with these improvements, and hopefully begin relying on Analysis Workspace for more and more of your analysis needs.

Meanwhile, we will continue to add more capabilities to this exciting new area of Adobe Analytics throughout the remainder of our beta period and beyond. We’ve already got a bunch of great new stuff in the works, and it won’t be long before I am writing another one of these posts to pass along more good news!