Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Sitecore FXM, Profile and Pattern Matching

I was playing around with FXM and I was able to create placeholders in the non-Sitecore site and put Sitecore content into those placeholders, which is cool!

However it was not so lucky when setting up profiles at the beginning. For some reason (still unknown) the profile (and its keys, profile/pattern cards) I set up the first time did not with with the page filters and nothing got recorded in MongoDB's intractions collection, and of course in Experience Analytics only the visits are shown.

I then wrote a custom pipeline to loop through the profile cards associated with the matched filter and manually score them. This worked, the profile and the profile keys/values were recorded against the interaction however no pattern was recorded.

After studying the code, I realised that what I did in my custom pipeline was already catered for out-of-the-box so I was confused and consulted Sitecore support and they also could not figure out why so I was suggested to create another profile from scratch and remove the custom pipeline.

Surprisingly this worked! I could see profile values as well as pattern card recorded under the interaction and the matched pattern shows in Experience Analytics.

However soon I noticed that there is nothing displayed in Experience Profile. I used to see bunch anonymous records there in another version of Sitecore 8 but I cannot see anything here. Why?

I am using Sitecore 8.2 Update 4 and if you are not as careless as me and are paying attention to the release notes, you would notice that in the release notes of Sitecore 8.2 Update 3 there is a change to how the anonymous contacts are indexed:


  <setting name="ContentSearch.Analytics.IndexAnonymousContacts" value="false"/>
Note the comments and the default value was changed from true (prior to 8.2.3) to false. For sites that do not have WFFM (that identifies the contact when needed) nor custom contact identification process you might prefer this to be turned on in order to display the behaviour of the anonymous users. However if you do have the mechanism to identify the contact then this is suggested to be turned off to reduce impact on performance.

So by changing the value to true and make some interactions with the site, you will see the anonymous contacts listed in Experience Profile. Note that this only works for new intractions; if you want to see old data (before this was set to true) you will need to rebuild your reporting database.

I thought I would just blog this in case someone was struggling with this too!

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