What Are Omniture Tags?

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In an effort to revolutionize how the world engages with information, Adobe Systems Incorporated spent about $1.8 billion to acquire Omniture corporation on October 23, 2009. Omniture seeks to provide high quality Web analytics for online businesses; Omniture tags help accomplish this task.

Purpose

As a Web analytics system, Omniture allows online stores – websites that sell products -- to track visitors and conversions (sales) using custom metrics and reporting of variables. The JavaScript code it uses yields fine details about a visitor that would otherwise be unknown. Some metrics include which keywords someone typed into a search engine to reach a page, what other websites visitors may be coming from, how long a visitor stays, what links they click and how many pages they view before leaving.

Benefits

Tracking customers through Omniture tags gives online businesses insights that help them optimize sales. Techniques like “split testing” can be implemented, which compares different versions of the same Web page. Over time, Omniture’s tracking will show trends indicating which version converts visitors to customers better. Tracking visitors also provides insights into the demographics of potential customers, allowing you to create ads that are more targeted and effective and develop new products and services more suited to your target audience.

Implementation

One of the most important tracking codes to understand in Omniture is “s.tl(this, ‘o’).” This line of code is attached to a clickable link and tells the system to track. Three different tags may be used. As in the example, inserting the letter “o” between the single quotation marks stands for the “Other/General” category. Inserting the letter “d” in the same place indicates a “File Download” link, and the letter “e” means “Exit Link.” Together, the tags allow the system to track clicks on three different types of links on each of a website’s pages.

Drawbacks

While Omniture is the de facto standard for tracking customers and Web analytics for Internet businesses as of March, 2010, it does have its fair share of flaws. Some complaints expressed by experts claim the company’s “SiteCatalyst” reporting application is slower than competitors, and the JavaScript code is bloated, impossible to debug and built on outdated practices. Lastly, it can be very expensive to use for clients who want to utilize some of the more fancy features available.