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SiteCatalyst – Tracking Custom Links as Pages

9th March 2012 by Richard Pickett | News & Events

As websites have evolved over recent years, more and more functionality is becoming available ‘within a page’ as opposed to on separate pages. This poses an issue to analytical tools, which as standard, measure interactions at a page level.

SiteCatalyst provides an out of the box ‘custom link tracking’ functionality, which allows you to track clicks on elements within a page. Put simply, a snippet of code is placed on each link/button which you wish to track as an onClick event:

var s=s_gi('rsid');
s.tl(this,'o','Link Name');

(where ‘rsid’ is your report suite ID, and ‘Link Name’ is the description you wish to see in the report).

These links will then populate the ‘Custom Links’ report, in the following location:

Site Content -> Links -> Custom Links

Whilst this solution may suit your basic needs nicely (i.e “how many clicks have each of my custom links received”) you are limited in terms of what other analysis you can perform, and the subsequent insight available.

Consider an example below, where you may have an accordion type form on a page:

You may wish to put custom link tracking on each of the ‘next’ buttons to track how far a user progresses through the form. However, the limitation arises when you attempt to view this data within the Fallout report builder.

The Fallout report builder in SiteCatalyst can build reports solely based on ‘pages’, but, a custom link track does not pass the ‘pageName’ variable. Therefore, these custom links aren’t classed as ‘pages’, and cannot be used within the Fallout report builder as standard.

To get around this issue, it’s possible to modify the “s.tl()” code to simply “s.t()”. This has the effect of re-firing the image request and allows you to set the pageName variable for subsequent use in the Fallout report. You won’t, however see this item within the ‘Custom Links’ report anymore (it’ll be in the Pages report instead) and this will also increase your Report Suite page view total by one each time (Custom Links do not count towards this).

So to summarise, if you have a desire to track clicks within a page and latterly display these within the SiteCatalyst Fallout report builder, Custom Link Tracking won’t work, and you’ll need to explore a solution which passes pageName instead.

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