How to understand the core tenets of an Experience Analytics platform

In a previous blog post, I discussed five critical things to check before deciding on an Experience Analytics solution. In addition to all the capabilities and features one should seek in such a solution, the scalability and robustness of the underlying platform is perhaps even more important.

A cutting-edge technology stack is critical for any digital marketing or analytics solution. The goal of any provider building a platform today ought to be maximum performance and scalability at minimum cost. Something that’s robust enough for enterprise customers whose number of unique monthly visitors can reach in the tens or hundreds of millions. At Clicktale, with over a decade of experience serving some of the world’s most heavily trafficked sites, we knew that our customers would settle for nothing less.

If I had to name the core tenets of an Experience Analytics platform, they would be: scalability, robust architecture, deep technology partnerships, not to mention cloud agnostic.

  • Scalability: Think of how many millisecond-level interactions happen on the most popular sites. Many enterprises would like every hover, mouse move, click, tap and zoom to be captured – that’s trillions of interactions per day and requires a lot of processing power. At Clicktale, our platform is built to handle over half-a-million requests to our servers every second, and it keeps expanding. Each request encapsulates many interactions (hovers, clicks, etc.) handled within tight SLAs. We’re capable of ingesting and serving data for customers scaling to over 3 billion monthly unique page views, with a retention of 13 months, with a 99% query SLA of under four seconds.

  • Robust architecture: Another important criteria for an Experience Analytics platform is its ability to scale up during peak times, such as Black Friday weekend for an e-commerce site, or vacation times for a travel site. The largest e-commerce retailers create situation rooms for these peak times. But in the off-season, there’s no need to devote the same amount of resources. As I’ve mentioned previously, at Clicktale our proprietary methodologies have evolved over the last 10 years to handle any modifications required in our architecture, specifically for large, unpredictable workloads, seasonal traffic-growth and immense surges. Our system knows how to adjust itself to accommodate these huge bursts of traffic in a completely automated and immediate way. In addition, all of this has been developed in the most cost-effective way possible, fine-tuned to quickly scale up or down based on our vast production experience with high workloads.

  • Deep technological partnerships and cutting-edge technology stack: Make sure your Experience Analytics provider stands on the tall shoulders of its infrastructure providers and best-of-breed systems for Big Data, analytics, processing, streaming and more. At Clicktale, we’re proud to work with the leading infrastructure providers for our system, including Amazon Web Services, Aerospike, LightBend and others. And for our technology stack, we utilize Vertica and Hadoop for saving the analytics data and enabling ad hoc analytics services; Spark for stream computing and running algorithms that analyze our behavioral data; Spray, Aerospike and Kafka for handling large volumes of our clients’ data; and Angular, NodeJS and MongoDB on our application layers.

  • Cloud agnostic: Clicktale is not locked in to any one vendor and can easily switch some parts of the system or the entire system to different providers.

In addition to the above, your Experience Analytics provider ought to retain a large group of experts to address your business’ particular needs. As you might have guessed, at Clicktale we’ve got a wide range of experts in fields such as scalability, analytical databases, performance tuning, real-time programming, command and control, mathematicians, statisticians, machine learning experts, and security experts, to name a few. Perhaps I’ll interview some of these super-smart colleagues in future blog posts – I’ll be learning along with you!

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