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I'm working on a flash app that's gonna be distributed to more and more partners (and obviously domains). It needs to be tracked aggregated and also separately.

I implemented Google Analytics using gaforflash, tracking virtual pageviews and events inside the flash app.

What I want to achieve:

  • View an aggregated report of all partners.
  • Identify the partner not by the domain (where the flash is used), but by a partnerID.
  • Each partner needs access to the report of his domain. (no admin rights needed)

I came up with this solution:

  • Using only one "Web property" in Google Analytics.
    • UA-XXXXXX-4
    • .example.com
  • Set a custom/virtual hostname per partner. (GA's "utmhn" parameter)
    • partner1.example.com
    • partner2.example.com
  • Create a profile for each partner, setting the filter to include only the relevant "subdomain"

Problems that came up:

  • The gaforflash library doesn't support overriding the host name.
    • Possible workaround: The gaforflash source code is available, so I could add the functionality.
  • Any goal from the "master" profile is not copied to the partners profile.
    • profile 1: include traffic from hostname ^partner1\.
    • profile 2: include traffic from hostname ^partner2\.

Is it (very) bad to fake the hostname?
Are there better approaches?
Or what improvements could you think of?

UPDATE:

I'm looking primarily for a solid data structure inside Google Analytics regardless of the flash implementation. The only limitations:

  • We need an aggregated view across all partners
  • Our partners need to have access to their subset of data
  • We want to identify the partner by a custom partnerID, not the domain
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migrated from stackoverflow.com May 31 '11 at 14:16

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1 Answer 1

Less of an answer and more of a pointer, but you might like to look into cross-domain tracking.

Using that set up, it appears you could create a single profile in Google Analytics, send all data back to that profile to get the aggregated report of all partners, then modify your single cross-domain profile as detailed here to create a filter to sort by individual domains, or set a custom variable to track by partnerID.

To offer partner report data, it might be worth building a simple report system hosted on your own site using the Analytics APIs instead of providing full access to spoofed subdomain profiles.

You may also like to consider other analytics software. Omniture SiteCatalyst (from Adobe) looks promising: page 21 of the documentation suggests that it can be used to track Flash application installs and events across multiple domains. I'm not sure if it offers sub-accounts/client access, but the reporting features look good, and they also offer a reports API.

Webtrends offers Flash/application tracking too.

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