Friday, September 12, 2008

WASP v0.60: enhanced site audits

The last update of WASP goes back to July, I was overdue for an update! So here it is!

Web Analytics Quality Assurance in 5 steps:

In v0.60, most of the work was focused on the crawling process.
  1. Pick a source: either a web page, an existing sitemap or load a list of URLs from a file
  2. Set crawl features: filters, number of pages to crawl, depth, load delay, follow robots rules, etc.
  3. Watch the progress as WASP crawl the site and retrieve pages and tags information. Pause, Resume or Cancel at any time.
  4. Export results to CSV, XML or Sitemap or use the built in WASP Report
  5. Analyze the data with the Excel CSV export feature or the WASP's built-in Data Browser to spot missing tags, broken links, wrong values being sent, etc.

    Bug fixes & enhancements

    • Crawler wizard: Improved dialogs, show progress information (pages crawled/left, time/remaining)
    • Crawler intelligence: new option to intercepts dialogs that could be hanging the crawler, detects secured areas and stay away from them automatically (i.e. without hanging on a username/password prompt), skip timeout pages, etc...
    • Lite weight database: WASP now uses a lite weight database to store crawling information.
    • Project files: Store crawl results into distinct WASP Tag Files (databases)
    • Post-processing: more efficient post-processing of crawl results.
    • Export: Save to CSV, XML or Sitemap significantly improved
    • Reporting interface: slightly enhanced reporting interface, although it is still preferable to save to CSV and work from there for the moment.
    • New tools: Atlas, SiteBrand, SiteTracker, TagMan, for a total of 121!
    • Sidebar: Fixed breakdown of variables which was incorrect in some cases.
    • Specifics: show SiteCatalyst report suite and code version in variable breakdown.

    I'm working on...

    • Intro videos & case studies: Create more videos and showcase of WASP in action
    • Stealth mode: Block web analytics calls for firing, so you don't inflate your stats while crawling
    • Even more advanced crawling: Continue crawl from an existing database, page sampling for automated site health check.
    • Pattern finding: when crawling, automatically detect pages based off templates
    • Analyst view: providing a non-technical view of the tags logically grouped into "Page information", "Campaigns", "Events", "eCommerce", etc.
    • Reporting tool: add easy filtering of data and default views, including a dashboard view for quality assurance
    • Sitemap generator: generate a Google compatible sitemap.xml file with automated optimization of the parameters
    • Licensing and ecommerce: preparation toward the v1.0 commercial release

    Getting it or upgrading

    Two ways to upgrade or get WASP:
    1. Get it NOW! Easiest/Recommended: Visit and click on the "Add to Firefox" green button.
    2. Wait some a long time...: If you already have WASP installed, Firefox will eventually trigger an automatic update and prompt you to confirm. But... is getting an amazingly long time to approve extensions...
    And don't forget to visit the revamped WASP website!
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