Make Sense of Your Data with Funnels

I harp constantly on this blog and elsewhere about the importance of analytics and using your mobile publishing platform to pay attention to what users are doing with your app. But one of the challenges to doing that is making sense of the data: Sure, I can see how many people tapped a link, but does that tell me everything I need to know?

Probably not, but there’s a tool that any of our analytics partners provides that can really help you drill down into those dry stats: the funnel.


Put basically, a funnel is way to layer trackable events on top of each other. So, for instance, instead of just looking at how many people clicked a link on a page, you could see how many people who spent more than a minute on the page clicked the link—that will give you a more accurate sense of how engaging your link was, since you’re filtering out people who didn’t bother reading the article anyway.

Funnels can also be useful for testing marketing efforts. For example, Muscle & Fitness magazine—from AMI, one of the most advanced publishers in using analytics and marketing tools in its digital efforts under director M&F Popup messageof tablet publishing, Chris Tarrow—offers a free trial issue. To make sure people know about that issue, Tarrow makes a pop-up message appear via Localytics every time a new user opens the app. Through a funnel, Tarrow can then measure not just how many people who saw that message downloaded the issue, but then how many of those people ultimately bought a subscription. That gives him real, measurable ROI on that message, which allows him to test different messages and different free content and report exactly which ones convert best. (To learn more about AMI’s efforts, download a free case study here.)

Here are some more funnel ideas (the capabilities for what you can filter on will vary by provider).

  • Of all the people who bought a single issue, how many ended up buying a subscription?
  • Of all the people who opened this issue, how many viewed this particular page?
  • Of all the people who looked at the table of contents, how many clicked a link to a story?
  • Of all the people who saw this page, how many watched the movie? Of those, how many clicked the link?
  • Of all the people who purchased a subscription, how many people opened more than three issues?

You can see the pattern. Funnels can be saved, so once you find the metrics that matter to you, it’s easy to check them every week and make a report. Creating funnels varies by provider, but is usually pretty straightforward: just stacking events.

If there’s something you need analytics to measure to make your dream funnel that you can’t get now, let us know in the support forum and we’ll see if we can add it to the mag+ mobile publishing platform.

More information about Mobile publishing platforms like Mag+.