In 2D Reports, Be Careful When Combining Hit-Based and Visit-Based Dimensions

There are two types of Webtrends report dimensions: Hit and Visit. In reports with nested dimensions, you have to be a little careful of the combinations.

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There are rules about how dimensions can be combined in 2-D reports.   The rules have to do with the  important distinctions between hit dimensions and visit dimensions.

A visit-based dimension applies to the whole visit – things that never change during the visit.  The referrer does not change.  The browser does not change.  And so on.

A hit-based dimension can change from hit to hit.  The URL changes.  The day of the week can change.

Rule 1:
In two-dimension custom reports, the first dimension must be broader than the second.

Visit is broader than hit.  Hit is finer-grained than visit.

So you can use these combinations of Primary > Secondary dimensions in a custom report:

Visit > Visit
Visit > Hit
Hit > Hit

And you must NEVER use this combo:

Hit > Visit

For the latter, you will get a report with results, but it will freeze your soul if you look at it too closely, and astute consumers of your data will laugh at you, or worse.

Rule 2:
For Hit-Hit 2D reports, both events must happen in the same hit!

Of course, Rule 1 begs the question of what is a hit-based dimension and what is a visit-based dimension.  It’s not always intuitive and it’s definitely not in the UI or as far as I can tell in the documentation.  Here’s the correct list for all the currently available Dimension choices and how WebTrends categorizes them.  Pay attention, because you’d probably guess wrong on some.

Hit Dimensions:

  • browser
    browser version
    content group
    cookie parameter
    day of week
    directory
    download
    extension
    hour of day
    pages
    query parameter
    any custom drilldown
    query parameter (when collected on “all hits” or “hits that match xxx” or “most recent value”)
    query string (when collected on “all hits” or “hits that match xxx” or “most recent value”)
    referrer (labeled “per hit”)
    return code
    server
    time period
    url
    url with parameters

Visit-based Dimensions

  • ad campaign
    agent
    area code
    authenticated username
    city
    country
    dma
    domain name
    duration
    entry page
    entry request
    exit page
    geography drilldown
    MSA
    network
    network type
    new vs returning
    organization
    page views
    platform
    PMSA
    query parameter (when collected on “first occurrence” or “last occurrence” )
    query string (when collected on “first occurrence” or “last occurrence” )
    referring page (the one labeled “initial per visit”)
    referring site
    referring top level domain
    search engine
    search keywords
    search phrase
    state
    throughput
    time zone
    top level domain
    visitor
    visitor segment (WT.seg and WT.vhseg)

 

 

 

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