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Your Site’s Most Popular Content: Web Analytics Web Part

There is an out of box web part in SharePoint 2010 called the Web Analytics web part, and it is part of the enterprise and standard versions of SharePoint 2010, and it is NOT available in SharePoint Online in Office 365.
** corrected 11/3

First of all, Todd’s post here is from an admin’s perspective:

This post is about the web analytics web part and what it can do for you.  First of all, there is a site collection feature that needs to be activated: “Advanced Web Analytics”

The Web Analytics Web Part is in the category of web parts called “Content Rollup”, and when you insert it on the page, this is what it looks like at first:

(I’m using my own My Site for testing here, so all of the links are random stuff that I test and try)

Don’t worry, I know it looks pretty messy and this is not necessarily you’d want to show end users, but there are plenty of settings that you can change.  Open the web part properties toolpane:

When I change the web part to show search results, it looks a lot different, and cleaner.  It simply shows me the recent search terms that have been used on my site.  Clicking on any of these words will take you to the search results page for that search:

Information to Display – Basically, your results can either be a list of content, things like pages and files that have been accessed, or it can be a list of common searches that are performed. Site search queries are just common terms that people have looked for on the current site, and search center queries are common searches that have been done using the search center site.

Site Scope – If you have selected Most Viewed Content in the “Information to Display” box, you will be able to use this drop-down box to pick either This Site Collection, This site and subsites, or This site only.  Whichever you choose, the web part will only show commonly accessed content from that location/scope.

Search Scope – If you choose search center queries in the “Information to display” box, then you can pick a specific search scope to narrow it down to.  For example, if you have a site where you keep all of your company policies, and you’ve created a custom search scope for it in search administration in central admin, then you can pick that specific scope name here, and the web part will only show common searches that people perform when they’re looking for company policies.

Period – By default, the web part only shows you content or searches that have been done in the last 30 days.  You can change that number of days, and the maximum is 180 days.  The web part won’t show any content that has been accessed or searched for longer than X many days ago.

Item Limit – How many items will show in the web part.  The higher the number here, the longer the web part will be vertically down the page.  The default is 10.

Exclude item title or search query containing – This can be a comma separated list of words that you would NOT like to appear in this web part.

Show Frequency – This is the number of times the item has been accessed or searched for.  It puts a number in parentheses after each item in the list.

Show  Popularity Rank – This setting will put the list of results in numerical order in the web part, according to how popular they are.  Notice that in this screenshot, the item that has been accessed 43 times is listed first.  Also notice that the items are listed in order of popularity, even when there is no popularity rank number next to them (see previous screenshot).

Show Popularity Rank Trend – This setting will put little green arrows next to things that are becoming more popular, and it will put the word “new” next to items that are new in this list of content.

Enable User Title Filtering – This is pretty cool, it lets you see what people of a certain job title are accessing or looking for.  In this screenshot, the Information to Display has been set to show search result queries, and I’ve checked the box for user title filtering.  (This box will only show job titles if you’ve actually set up user profile synchronization and all of the user profiles have the correct job title.)  Once you select a job title, the list of results will change automatically.  For example, if I select the job title “Consultant”, it will then show me a list of thinks that consultants have been searching for.

Enable User Department Filtering – This is the same concept as the job title filter, except it lets you filter by the name of the department.  You can even add both of these by checking both boxes.

Enable RSS Feed – This will put a RSS icon that links to a RSS feed of the list of all of the items that show in this web part.

The following web part is showing the most popular searches that have been done, it lets you filter by job title and/or department, it shows the frequency, popularity rank, and there’s a link for the RSS feed:

It would be nice if I could just put the current user filter web part on this page and connect it so that it sends the currently logged in user’s department to the web analytics web part, but it appears that the web analytics web part doesn’t accept connections at all.

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