New Features of Webtrends async JavaScript v10.2

In case you missed the kickoff post, take a look now.


Webtrends Heatmaps

Webtrends is adding some truly amazing heatmap overlay built-in to your Analytics 10 spaces.  More information on this new feature can be found on the Webtrends product site.


Social analytics features built-in

Webtrends is the leader in social analytics: in addition to our Analytics 10 spaces for Facebook apps and pages, Webtrends has provided tags that uniquely track Facebook social widget interactions, Facebook app tracking, referrals, clickthrough campaign sessions, etc.  With v10.2, our JS tag includes tracking these feature with on page or customized JavaScript. It's a single click to add this into your tags.


Plugins for easy extensibility

The new built-in social analytics has been made possible through a  powerful plugin architecture allows for easily adding new capabilities to the tagging without modifying your Webtrends JS at all.  Webtrends has created several plugins and we expect to see partner and community plugins to follow.  More details below.


Selector-based Event tracking

A very exciting new feature is that using the JQuery type selector based capabilities of the new JS, it is incredibly easy to create events that execute on a wide variety of criteria from document clicks, to off-site clicks to anchor links and ajax calls.  Simply add a selector for the object type you want and we can execute our click tracking (aka Webtrends "multitrack").


"Transform" events and page load tap points

As part of the JS design, there is now the ability to add parameters to the Webtrends data collection requests before page load, access elements in the dom, transform the Webtrends request before it is sent, or duplicate the event (for further manipulation).


Performance General

This isn't the first release of Webtrends asynchronous JavaScript tagging, we've been using it since 2010 in various versions of our tag.  But there are lots of aspects to performance worth noting in v10.2.  Generally, the actual execution of the JavaScript itself has never been slow on modern hardware but that doesn't mean that performance can't be improved upon.


Compact and Minimizes to a very small footprint

The tag is much smaller.  It minimizes to a very compact size, only a fraction of the 9.x JS tag.  The new tag has been optimized to minimize well using the Google Closure Compiler.


This means that bandwidth limited devices can download the tag with very little data transfer.


Asynchronous explained

Traditional JS files are launched from inline "blocking" html which means that as the html page loads, it will wait for the JS to execute before continuing on.  This meant it was always best to have the JS execute at the end of a web page to avoid any user experience issues.  This isn't always ideal and could result in some undercounting of statistics too (bounces for one).  Asynchronous JS means it will load and execute and allow all other html to continue loading as well.

  • Non-blocking, can load anywhere on page
  • Potentially higher execution rate
  • In combination with compact size, can make bandwidth limited devices execute with higher accuracy.  Smaller means faster download, and asynchronous means it can load at the top of the page.