STANDARD VARIABLES
In addition to the Page Name variable, Omniture offers several other traffic variables to help you collect and segment Web analysis data from you site.

BUSINESS OBJECTIVES
Here are some of the common business questions and objectives that can be answered though these other standard traffic variables:

  • Identify how various content categories are utilized by visitors.
  • Track site usage based on established content hierarchies.
  • Understand user navigation through Web site section.
These other standard variables are shown below:
Server The server variable is used to show either the domain of a web page (to show which domains people come to) or the server serving the page (for a load-balancing quick reference).
Site Section The channel variable is most often used to identify a section of your site. For example, a merchant may have sections like Electronics, Toys, or Apparel. A media site may have sections like News, Sports or Business.
Hierarchies The hierarchy variable is used to determine the location of a page in your site’s hierarchy. This variable is most useful for sites that have many levels in the site structure. For example, a media site may have four levels to the Sports sections: Sports, Local Sports, Baseball, Red Sox. If someone visits the Baseball page, then Sports, Local Sports and Baseball will all reflect that visit.
Error Pages The pageType variable captures the errant URL and referring URL when a 404 Error Page is displayed, which allows Site Catalyst users to quickly find broken links and paths that are no longer valid on the site.
Each of these variables is discusses at length in the following sections.

THE CHANNEL VARIABLE
When developing a page naming strategy, it can make sense to also define a page grouping strategy at the same time. Whereas page names are the lowest level of granularity, the channel variable represent a higher level view, which primarily focus on the key groups of pages. The following examples show how the channel variables can be used:

- s.channel = “Phones”;
- s.channel = “Laptops”;
- s.channel = “PDAs”;

Anything that you put into the channel variable will show up in the Site Section report, in the Traffic > Segmentation folder. Therefore, for all intents and purposes, “channel” and “site sections” are synonymous. Omniture recommends populating the channel variable on every page that belongs to a section. You can even make a key page (such as the home page) its own section. When sections have one or more levels of subsections, you can either show those subsections within the channel variable values, or use additional custom variable to identify such levels (discusses later in the chapter).

- s.channel = “Phones | PDA Phones | Motorola”;
- s.channel = “Laptops | Toshiba”;
- s.channel = “PDAs | HP | iPAQ”;

It is usually easy to identify prime values for the channel variable, simply by looking at the main navigation for the site. If you want to know how much traffic goes to these areas of your site, code the channel variable with the associate value.

- s.channel = “Gear Review;
- s.channel = “Mountain Biking”;
- s.channel = “New Gear”;

THE SERVER VARIABLE
The server variable is another pre-named traffic variable. It is typically used to show either the domain of a Web page (to show which domains people come to) or the server serving the page (for a load balancing quick reference). It can show either which domains are most popular or which servers are serving the most pages. Frequently, the server variable is not used to measure servers, but is used to measure specific sites, data centers or vanity domains. The following examples show how the server variables can be used.

- s.server = “mainserver.bell.com”;
- s.server = “UK Site”;
-s.server = “window.location.host”;

Any value going into the server variable fills the Most Popular Servers report found in the Traffic > Segmentation folder. Also, like other traffic variables, the server variable has a limit of 10 bytes.