As you may know, Microsoft provides out of the box Site Usage data and inline article statistics. These prominent statistics can become top of mind numbers for users, and stakeholders alike. For this reason, it can sometimes come as a shock to see that tyGraph Views and Unique User counts to be much lower or higher than you are used to seeing for our content.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
- Why is tyGraph Different?
- Firewall Restrictions for scripts, Application Insights, API, or tyGraph CDN
- Different Page View Definitions
- Unsupported Browsers in tyGraph Pages
- Report Latency
- User Selection / Filters
- Low Bandwidth / High Latency connections
- Perform a Health Check
- Comparing views on a page that was created before tyGraph was installed
- Users in Multilingual Settings
- Installed tyGraph Pages Engine into a single Site Collection App Catalog
- Look for errors in your browser's Developer Console
- Azure Monitor Private Link
- Page Like Count is different than SharePoint
- tyGraph's Commitment to Transparency
Why is tyGraph Different?
There are many ways to capture telemetry in Office 365. When capturing and counting traffic, it's more than likely numbers are not going to line up exactly since each service has their own method of counting. We recommend against spending time comparing numbers between sources. It's normal for a variance to be as much as 5%- 10% between sources due to a variety of conditions (especially on large global tenants), some of which are listed below. However, if you are seeing a significant variance such as 500% or more, read through the suggestions below. Network issues including the configuration of cloud proxies are a leading cause in discrepancies.
Firewall Restrictions for scripts, Application Insights, API, or tyGraph CDN
If the user is connecting from a corporate network, VPN, or DirectAccess, then the logging of their page view could be potentially blocked from writing to Application Insights by your network security tools such as a cloud firewall or reverse proxy. While the SDKs we use have batching and retries, the telemetry capture can appear to be "bursty" to the endpoints. Some firewalls can choose to block this outbound traffic or de-prioritize it which can cause telemetry to not be captured. This can contribute to a significantly lower Page Views for companies with heavy firewall restrictions or large on premises populations, sometimes as much as 80% lower.
Check your firewall (or reverse proxy) blocking rules to see if you are preventing connections to our API, CDN, and Application Insights IP addresses. Review the network requirements for tyGraph Pages. Even if your firewalls aren't explicitly blocking Application Insights or other IP addresses, content filtering or content tracking policies may prevent outbound traffic to our endpoints. For a full list of IPs needed for tyGraph to write to Application Insights please see this Microsoft article. You may need to whitelist all addresses listed in the network requirements within your network to prevent its traffic from being filtered.
This is the number one cause of discrepancies in page view and unique user counts.
Different Page View Definitions
SharePoint and tyGraph for SharePoint (audit log) count one page view per session. The built-in page view counts in SharePoint, take measures to filter out repetitive requests by the same user. For example, if you reload your webpage or navigate back to the same page within the same session this will not be counted as a view by the Microsoft Audit tracker.
For details see this article. Microsoft does not count some views citing: "The algorithm used to calculate Site visits is designed to filter out repetitive, continual operations by the same user on the same item (page, document, or news). For example when a user repeatedly refreshes a page, document, or news post."
In tyGraph Pages, we capture each action the user is taking even within the same session. This can lead to higher page view counts for some tenants.
Unsupported Browsers in tyGraph Pages
The tyGraph Pages Engine does not capture user activity from the following browsers:
- Internet Explorer
Page views from unsupported browsers will not be counted. Refer to tyGraph Pages supported browsers for more details.
Some of our products refresh on a varying time scale. tyGraph Pages collects data in near real time (within 15 minutes) tyGraph for SharePoint refreshes every 24 hours. If you notice a large variation between two reports or between reports and reality then check the refresh dates.
User Selection / Filters
Sometimes in Power BI you can filter out data unintentionally. Be sure to double check your selection to ensure you haven't filtered out or excluded data.
Low Bandwidth / High Latency connections
The tyGraph Pages Engine script intentionally waits one second after the page is fully loaded before sending telemetry. On a slow connection, this may cause the script loading to time out or the user could click on a link to visit another page before the current page has finished loading. This can cause the page view to not be counted.
Perform a Health Check
The tyGraph Pages Site Analytics web part has a Health Check feature that will help you troubleshoot potential connectivity issues. We recommend testing this with a variety of users and physical locations if you think you are having issues with capturing telemetry. Just because the Health Check passes in one location doesn't mean it will for a user in another.
Comparing views on a page that was created before tyGraph was installed
If you are comparing page views against SharePoint's reported numbers and tyGraph Pages, you may see a difference if you are looking at an existing page that was created before installation. With tyGraph Pages, data is collected in real-time and historical data is not included for pages that were created before installation.
Users in Multilingual Settings
Although the aggregated page views are accurate in Pages, you do need to drill into the language-specific pages to display measurements that more closely align with the native SharePoint usage info. Considering this scenario, if each individual language page is tracked separately, and we have EN as one page, while JA is another, then the total in the default tyGraph Pages view is for both, however you can drill down into the individual page metrics.
Installed tyGraph Pages Engine into a single Site Collection App Catalog
If you are installing tyGraph Pages Engine into a single Site Collection App Catalog, only that site collection will record telemetry. We recommend installing into your tenant's Site Collection App Catalog and make it available to all sites. We do not recommend single Site Collection installation.
Look for errors in your browser's Developer Console
View the developer console and look for errors or warnings mentioning tyGraph. You can put tyGraph in Debug Mode to show additional information. You should try this from a number of user accounts with varying non-administrator permissions from different physical locations in your organization.
Azure Monitor Private Link
If you organization uses any Azure Monitor Private Links, this can affect the ability to capture telemetry when tyGraph is hosting Application Insights on your behalf. If you view the Developer Console in your browser, you will see a 403 error on the POST to dc.services.visualstudio.com when this is the issue. In order to send telemetry to tyGraph Pages, please ensure that your Private Link access mode has been configured as Open. Additional details are in Microsoft's documentation.
Page Like Count is different than SharePoint
With tyGraph Pages, we capture Page Likes in real-time when the user clicks the Like button. This may or may not be captured on some platforms such as the SharePoint mobile app or Microsoft Teams. On existing pages before tyGraph installation, we will not have those counts as well. In an upcoming release, we will change the way we report on page like counts which will have enhanced accuracy.
tyGraph's Commitment to Transparency
We understand as a report owner you are serving a number of stakeholders, some of which may be analyts who demand accuracy and the business who need to tell an accurate story. Once you've completed your due diligence around data validation its important to move forward with confidence to realize the value of the tyGraph Insights.
We hope that the transparency in how we collect and calculate data gives you confidence to affect meaningful change in your organization.
"After many discussions and tests we can now report that the inconsistencies in the numbers (comparing TyGraph Pages and SharePoint SiteAnalytics) are caused by SharePoint Online. We had called the pages using a script and compared the numbers. The numbers from TyGraph Pages were correct in the tests." ~tyGraph Customer