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Adobe Analytics Review: A Powerful Product But Who Is It For?

If you are serious about marketing your business and understanding your customers better, you may sometimes have to venture past Google Analytics. This free marketing analytics tool is okay but lacks advanced analysis capabilities. So it is in your best interest to invest in a platform that can give you better marketing insights.

Our previously published reviews in this segment have covered some excellent marketing analytics solutions including Tableau and IBM Cognos. Today, we are putting Adobe Analytics on trial. Let's see if it has got something worth a look.

What is Adobe Analytics?

Adobe Analytics is an analysis platform from Adobe Systems. It is part of the Adobe Experience Cloud, which is a comprehensive suite of marketing, advertising, analytics, and content management tools designed to help businesses manage their online presence and deliver personalized experiences to customers.

Within Adobe Analytics, you can track and analyze user interactions with your website, mobile app, and any other digital property. The analysis is real-time.

To better understand this platform, let's discuss some of its key features and capabilities.

Data Management

Adobe Analytics collects data from different channels such as websites and mobile apps. But in case you have additional data online or offline (for example, pre-click data or call center data), you can upload it to an FTP site provided by Adobe for analysis and reporting.

Upon data collection, Adobe Analytics allows you to classify your data to ensure better use of variables. You can fit more content in a single variable, establishing a relationship between them. There are multiple ways to do so. Classification sets are for creating and managing classifications in a single, sorted place. This is what Adobe recommends. Alternatively, you can create rules that assign content to a classification dimension or export a template spreadsheet with content in rows and classifications in columns.

In your Analysis Workspace, you can access a feature called Data Dictionary. It gives you key information about your Analytics environment such as the function of a component, similar components, or components that typically go together.

Data Visualization

Adobe Analytics offers robust data visualization capabilities to help you gain insights from your data and present it in a meaningful and visually appealing way. It is crucial for making data-driven decisions and communicating findings effectively within your organization.

You can create customized dashboards that display relevant metrics and visualizations for your specific needs. Also, Adobe Analytics dashboards can be tailored to individual roles within an organization, ensuring that each user sees the most relevant data.

Anomaly Detection

It is not unusual to find pattern disruptions in data where a particular metric has significantly changed against the previously recorded value. Adobe Analytics can help you detect such data anomalies and identify potential factors that caused them.

Anomaly detection is important for getting reliable KPIs. Some examples of anomalies worth looking at are drops in landing page views, spikes in low video bit rates, drastic drops in average order value, spikes in video buffer events, etc.

Contribution Analysis

Let's say you detected some anomalies in your data. Now what? This is where Adobe Analytics' contribution analysis comes into play. It discovers hidden patterns in your data to explain those anomalies.

Contribution analysis quickly dissects the factors contributing to an anomaly within seconds, a task that used to take weeks, offering insights into patterns among audience segments and helping create a narrative for customer interactions. You can use it to identify meaningful connections to develop new audience segments or detect fraudulent activities triggering an alert.

Predictive Analysis

This advanced technique within Adobe Analytics is designed to help businesses leverage their data to make predictions about future user behavior, trends, and outcomes. This could include predicting customer churn, recommending personalized content or products, optimizing marketing campaigns, and more.

Adobe Analytics' predictive capabilities make use of machine learning and advanced statistical models to automatically go through huge chunks of data, hunting for the patterns that your analysts don't have the time or patience for.

Intelligent Alerts

Adobe Analytics' Alert Builder lets you set up intelligent alerts with more granular control. It brings anomaly detection and alerts together into the alert system.

You can create alerts based on anomalies (% thresholds, % change, above/below), see beforehand how often an alter is triggered, send email or SMS alerts, and create 'stacked' alters. If you don't know, 'stacked' alerts are the ones with the capability to capture multiple metrics within a single alert.

Activity Maps

An activity map with Adobe Analytics is a dynamic visual representation of how users engage with web pages and mobile applications. It helps marketers and analysts track and analyze metrics like clicks, hovers, and scrolling patterns.

Activity maps can help you spot patterns, trends, and areas of interest, ultimately helping you make informed marketing decisions about content placement, user flow, and design. With automatically generated heat maps (color-coded), you can identify high-impact areas, perfect for optimizing your CTAs, links, forms, etc.

Analytics Segmentation

For analytics segmentation, Adobe Analytics features Segment Builder and Segment Manager - letting you build, collect, approve, manage, and share audience segments across teams. Anyone in your organization can use or refine segments for analysis specific to their needs. Also, they can save the segment for others to use or refine, and then add it to the library as a new segment.

Besides, the platform has an Audience Manager to help you create unique audience profiles using first-party, second-party, and third-party integrations. From a marketing point of view, these profiles form your most valuable segments to use across your digital channels.

Analytics Integrations

In case you don't know, Adobe Analytics is a part of Adobe Experience Cloud, which has dozens of other solutions built into the system. The good thing about these tools being part of a common suite is that they can be integrated seamlessly with each other.

So, you can bring data or information from other Adobe Experience Cloud applications into Adobe Analytics and vice versa.

Report Builder

This feature is an extension to Microsoft Excel. With Report Builder you can create customized requests from Adobe Analytics data and then bring them into Excel for any further work.

The requests created with Report Builder automatically reference cells within an Excel worksheet. Also, you have the flexibility to customize them further in terms of how the data is presented.


Adobe Analytics offers three pricing plans - Select, Prime, and Ultimate. Select is ideal for centralizing your data for better decisions. Prime, on the other hand, is designed to better understand your customers and discover new insights to act on. The final plan, Ultimate, is designed to help you build unified customer profiles with cross-platform insights.

None of the plans have a fixed pricing as it depends on what a business is looking for. However, if you are interested, you can request a demo on the official Adobe website.

Final Thoughts

Adobe Analytics is a fine marketing analytics solution, maybe not be the best on the market. Compared to IBM Cognos, it sure lacks some advanced analysis capabilities. In terms of pricing, you can easily expect it to be not cheap considering it is an Adobe product.

This tool has some excellent features but here is part of the problem - if you have a small budget, you are more likely to go with cheaper options like Mixpanel Analytics but if you can afford the best, why not go for IBM Cognos?


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