Rich Internet applications appear on the Internet with increasing regularity, yet publishers, marketers and advertisers continue to struggle with measurement of user interac tions within some of these apps. Avenue A/Razorfish is attempting to address this problem with an analytics and reporting solution called RIAx, which it's making available to cli ents.
Reporting on rich Internet applications (RIA) (Define) happens through coo rdination between an Avenue A/Razorfish analyst and the client. The two parties assess the needs and goals of a particular campaign or Web site to determine the metrics and views to track. Campaigns are then adjusted based on results. Prior to RIAx's official launch, over 40 implementations were completed across the agency's clients.
"Ou r technology is tied in with the media. If a client has a display media campaign running and driving people to a rich Internet microsite, we can optimize the media campaign in real-t ime based on how people are engaging in the RIA," said Lee Sherman, SVP of global solutions at Avenue A/Razorfish.
While Web RIAs continue to challenge measurement, Web metrics companies like Omniture and WebTrends are able to track user interactions with them. RIAx will integrate wi th those Web analytics products when a client subscribes. Avenue A/Razorfish believes its flexible reporting and analysis provides easier access to useful insights.
" A lot of our clients have analytics services," said Sherman. "It is very labor intensive. It takes time to define actions; a developer needs to code that into the RIA, repo rts need to be created and interpreted. [With RIAx] the whole service wrap is on the front end."
The Web analytics services meanwhile claim they've already provid ed value to clients eager to measure how users are interacting with these applications. WebTrends' work for Kettle Foods and other clients has helped some clients "double su ccess metrics for RIA-based campaigns virtually overnight," according to Matt Langie, director of product marketing at WebTrends.
"WebTrends' experience has demonstrated that RIA features often require users to perform non-traditional behaviors to complete common tasks such as navigating deeper into a site, or using the site's shoppi ng card or search engine," Langie said.
RIAx tracks RIA on major platforms including Flash (Define< /a>), Adobe Flex (Define), AJAX (Define), an d Silverlight (Define).
"As things like AJAX become more front-and-center, the idea of a page view becomes more muddy," said Marc Ryan, VP of market research services at Nielsen//NetRatings. "Looking at things like time [spent] becomes more important as we move towards an AJAX environment."
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