With Adobe having recently announced their plans to sunset DTM soon, the entire Digital Analytics community is hastening towards migration. The need of the hour is to devise a way to migrate quickly and efficiently, for those who track and collect data solely through Adobe DTM. Having successfully completed migration with one of our long-time clients, we are proud to announce that we are working towards offering strategic DTM to Launch migration services to help clients meet their goals of migration well within time.
The client helps organizations manage risks like identity theft, fraud, money laundering and terrorism, ﬁnancial crimes, insurance, and government beneﬁt scams.
- The first and foremost problem was the impending sunset of DTM. The client approached us with a request to complete migration before the sunset dates scheduled by Adobe.
- Having to deal with elements in the existing implementation that may have turned redundant is another major challenge that can come up during the migration process. This redundancy is created due to upgrades in the tag management system. Predictably, this problem was observed in the client’s DTM implementation as well. Therefore, debugging errors from the existing implementation was of high priority to the client.
- The DTM implementation also had a strong dependency on processing rules, which is not recommended for any analytics implementation.
Our Approach – How we migrated step-by-step
Migration Plan: The migration was carried out in a careful, deliberate manner. It mainly comprised of analysis of the existing implementation, evaluation, integration, implementation and finally a thorough quality assessment.
- Search Discovery: We conducted an entire scan of the implementation in DTM using search discovery tools to get an insight into what could be potential pain points.
- Fixing Errors: The scan resulted in a list including each web property along with how many issues it had and where (in page rules, data elements, etc.). This led to a comprehensive review of all the errors, followed by making the necessary changes. The AppMeasurement libraries along with their custom codes were scanned and fixed separately. This had to be done manually as the search discovery tool used for the first scan was not inclusive of the libraries.
- In-Depth Evaluation: A final scan was conducted through a tool specific to Adobe Launch/DTM, Tagtician, which is a tag management companion and debugger for Adobe. Tagtician helped us identify and record the status of every page rule. We also made use of Observepoint, Omnibug and Adobe Experience Cloud Debugger.
- Integration: We were able to easily integrate tools like Adobe Analytics, Experience Cloud ID Service, SDI Toolkit, and Google Universal Analytics. The SDI toolkit enables users to save time and effort implementing what previously were complex custom coded scenarios in Adobe DTM. With the help of the Adobe Analytics extension, new Adobe Report Suites were set up for testing and ensuring seamless integration.
- Implementation: Migration was done through the ‘Upgrade to Launch’ feature provided by Adobe. A new property in Launch was created on click of the ‘Upgrade to Launch’ button. This meant that the client’s data elements, rules and custom code in DTM were copied over into Launch data elements and rules. Though the DTM resources had been copied into Launch, some of the migrated resources lacked context and relevance. This was one of the numerous obstacles we had to overcome. Some of the challenges faced during implementation are as follows:
- Implementation Problems faced
- DTM does not give users the ability to choose to send beacon action via s.t() or s.tl() function. Whereas in Adobe Launch, you can choose the type of beacon you want to fire – s.t() or s.tl() – even for the rules firing at Page Load Events such as Page Bottom, DOM Ready, etc.
- Upgrading to Launch means that the embed code will now load asynchronously, which results in the marketing pixels loading in an asynchronous manner as well. This could result in a discrepancy of data.
- The client wanted to ensure there would be no data loss in case of failure of any implementation on the Launch end during the migration process. So, we decided to run both the DTM embed code as well as the Launch embed code. This led to an overlap of the “s” object and therefore, only one functional embed code.
- Quality Assessment: The quality assessment stage was divided into two phases: one for assessment of the adobe pixels and one for marketing pixels.
- The first phase involved exclusive validation of the Adobe pixels. For validation of marketing pixels like Bing and Google AdWords tools like ObservePoint, Omnibug and Adobe Experience Cloud Debugger were used.
- The newly created dummy report suites were used for validation of all deployments. A side by side comparison of this dummy test environment with the original development environment was carried out to ensure that data was being collected accurately.
- Validation documents were set up and regularly updated and maintained throughout the quality assessment process.
- The implementation set up in the development library was tested in the production environment using the Launch and DTM switch tool to get a good picture of how the implementation would fare in the production environment after deployment.
- Successful Migration: Nabler was able to successfully migrate the client’s implementation from DTM to Launch. The client can now see the data collected by the new Launch property in the older, original report suites configured by them without any data discrepancy
- Improved Webpage Performance: There is a significant reduction in the time it takes for the page to load because of asynchronous tag loading, conditional tag loading, and tag timeout. The Launch container tag is 60% lighter than Adobe DTM (Legacy)
- Enhanced Implementation: The new implementation present in Launch is free of redundancies, irrelevant rules and data elements, etc. In accordance with the latest features offered by Launch, the following was carried out:
- The timing of deployments was set according to priority. Launch enables you to give each deployment a priority order and times it according to that order.
- Actions like ‘set variable’, ‘send beacon’, ‘clear variables’, etc. were all sequenced according to the specific requirements of each deployment.
- Extensions like SDI Toolkit, YouTube Embed, etc. aided us in integrating what could’ve been potentially been complex functionalities with much ease.
- Launch introduced the ability to leverage multiple development environments which meant that we could test several versions of deployments with variations without losing previous versions.
- Single page applications were configured for analytics without having to compromise on functionality. Launch allows us to set multiple event conditions alongside action sequencing which enabled us to create custom deployments unique to the client’s needs.
- Cleaner & Error free Container: In DTM, several variables were left unused and were no longer relevant to the implementation. By cross-checking the unused variables through the Analytics reports we could determine the variables that were irrelevant to the current implementation and either remove them or upgrade them as required. Recurring console errors that we noticed while testing and evaluating the DTM implementation were minimized.
- Scroll Tracking: In DTM, scroll depth was tracked in the quartile, decile, etc formats which is not recommended. With Adobe Launch, we were able to track scroll depth in percentages, which resulted in an improvement of interpretation and prediction of user behaviour.
About Adobe Launch
Launch is the next generation of tag management capabilities from Adobe. Launch gives customers a simple way to deploy and manage all the analytics, marketing, and advertising tags necessary to power relevant customer experiences.
Nabler is a solutions-focused digital analytics consulting firm that assists enterprises and media agencies in leveraging the best out of their digital infrastructure. Founded in 2004, with offices in Charlotte (USA) and Bangalore, Nabler has a played a consultative role in the digital marketing journeys of some of the top 100 global brands and Fortune 500 firms.
Nabler enables marketers to take advanced data-driven decisions and boost the effectiveness of their digital properties including websites, social media, online platforms, digital devices, web or mobile-based applications, and more.
Combining progressive analytics practices, technology, and domain expertise, our custom solutions help clients connect data and insights with business decisions.