Troubleshooting analytics


This article provides advice on troubleshooting issues that affect search analytics.

Empty search query reports

Empty search query reports could be caused by a number of things:

  • Ensure that analytics is scheduled to update. Select schedule automatic updates from the system menu in the administration interface and ensure that query reports update is scheduled to run.

  • Ensure that you a viewing the search query report for the collection/profile that receives the search queries (check the URL that is accessed when you run a query and look at the collection and profile parameters - this will indicate where the analytics are logged).

  • Ensure that queries are not being logged to a preview profile - only live profile analytics are displayed in the marketing dashboard.

  • Check that scheduled analytics is not disabled for the collection (analytics.scheduled_database_update collection.cfg option).

  • Check the update_reports.log of the collection that is logging the queries for any errors. Errors that may cause the analytics update to failure include:

    • Running out of memory (this can be increased using analytics.max_heap_size collection.cfg option).

    • Corrupted log file lines (this may require some manual cleaning of log files).

  • Try manually updating analytics for the collection then check the update_reports.log.

  • Check that the reporting blacklist isn’t excluding all of your queries.

Empty click reports

Empty click reports are usually a result of click links being used in the search results template. When a search result is clicked on it needs to use the click URL (similar to http://<FUNNELBACK-SERVER>/s/redirect with a bunch of parameters which logs the query before redirecting the user to the target URL.

A failed analytics update (see the information for empty search query reports above) could also result in empty click reports.

Low click volumes could simply be a result of not many results actually being clicked on. A highly effective concierge auto-complete can mean that users rarely need to click on results.

Empty trend alert reports

Empty trend alert reports could be caused by:

  • This could be an issue with trend alerts updating (check the logs)

  • It is also possible that no spikes have been detected in the logged queries as there are a number of factors which combine to generate a trend alert.

  • Check that there is a cron job or scheduled task for update outliers that should run once per hour. Note: this is not shown on the schedule automatic updates screen in the adminstration interface as it is an internal task.

All queries coming from a single or small number of IP addresses.

This is likely to be a poor integration where all traffic is coming via another system (e.g. the search is run via a CMS which makes the request to Funnelback on behalf of the user). For this type of integration it is important that the system sends an X-Forwarded-For header along with the search query so that the correct remote address is logged by analytics.

Blacklisted IP addresses and queries showing in analytics reports

Changes to the reporting blacklist require search analytics to be rebuilt for the changes to be retrospectively applied.

Search query reports display weird queries

Analytics search query reports will sometimes display stange looking queries. The queries displayed in the report are queries specified using Funnelback’s query language - so advanced queries (such as those submitted via advanced search forms or via some integrations) will often contain query language operators. These advanced parameters should ideally be passed as system query parameters or directed to a different profile (so that the analytics only reports on what the user actually typed into a search box).

How are queries counted?

Queries are counted by session - this means that if you search access multiple pages of the search results this will only count as a single query in the search analytics.

If the query is modified at all (including applying facets or other constraints) then this will count as a new query, though it may look like the same query in the analytics if the query term is the same and other constraints are set as system parameters.

Search analytics updates

  • The update_reports.log for the collection captures messages generated during an analytics update.