This guide explains the stats reported for your Event or VoD analytics.
1 Period for Reporting
There are a number of options for selecting the reporting period. If you select Live, the stats reported are for a rolling window for the last hour. For all other options (eg. Last 24 hours or Custom Range), the historical stats are reported for the specified time/date range.
The stats are provided based on the user's time zone i.e. the time zone for the person accessing the stats. For example, if a user in California logs into the portal to access stats for a 10AM event live streamed from California, they will see 10AM on their timeline whereas a user accessing the same event from Australia will see the stats for that event reported as 3AM the following day.
2 Key Viewer Metrics
The Viewers Online value below the graph indicates the total unique viewers for the currently selected time period (the last hour in this example). Unique viewers on the line graph indicate the number of unique viewers for that minute (or hour/day).
2.1 Unique Viewers
Unique Viewers refers to the the number of unique viewer sessions. When a viewer accesses the Event/VoD via the player embed, Player Pages or Channels, a cookie is installed in the browser which allows tracking of viewing. If the user doesn't allow the cookie to be installed, we fall back to the IP address, which is less reliable. How unique viewers are counted differs depending on how the Event/VoD is secured as described below.
Over the course of a live stream unique viewers will join and leave the stream. Additionally over the course of a live stream new unique viewers will join the stream. This means that the unique viewers on the live graph will generally never match up with the total 'viewers online' value.
Events/VoDs with no Privacy Setting
If a viewer opens, closes and then re-opens the player page in their browser, assuming that no memory was cleared and the cookie exists, the viewer is considered as the same viewer. If the viewer opens a new tab, the same cookie exists and hence, the viewer is considered as the same viewer.
Events/VoDs restricted via Single Sign On (SSO) or Viewer Management
If a viewer logs in via SSO or Viewer Management for the first time, a cookie is installed. If they log out and then log back in, a new cookie is installed and this second session is logged and reported and the viewer is also considered as a second viewer. If the viewer use a different browser on the same machine or a different browser on a different machine, new cookies are installed and these sessions are also logged and reported. Hence, for events restricted via SSO or Viewer management, typically the unique viewer sessions will be slightly higher than the unique people who watched the live stream.
For Events restricted via SSO or Viewer Management, you can see a table on Viewers (see screenshot below) and perform a search by Name or Email. You can also export the Viewer Access Report in csv format for further analysis.
2.2 Average View Time
The Average View Time refers to how long on average viewers watched the Live Event/VoD. This metric is calculated by dividing Total View Time by the Average Number of Viewers.
Total View Time is determined by an action called ping. When you first open the Player Page on the browser, initially an RTS(first request) is sent indicating the cookie, location and beginning of the start view time. In 4 to 5 minutes, the client makes another ping back which allows StreamShark to track whether the viewer is still online or not. For example, If we ping in 5 minutes, but the viewer closes their Player Page at 3 minutes (i.e. before the ping was sent) or 7 minutes (after the ping was sent), then we can’t confirm exactly whether they were online or not. Note, by default the ping interval is set to 5 minutes. Customers on our Enterprise plans can contact Support and request a shorter ping interval.
2.3 Median View Time
The Median View Time refers to the most central value i.e. "middle" value in a list of numbers, where half the numbers are higher and the other half is lower. So it means the middle value of the viewing time for the reporting period that you've selected for your Live Event/VoD. For example, if three viewers had different viewing times of 10 mins, 20 mins and 30 mins, the Median View Time would be 20 mins. Sometimes the Average View Time and Median View Time values can be similar. Other times, they can be significantly different. The Median View Time value is more useful with a higher number of viewers and helps eliminate outliers that may exist in the data set and can skew metrics.
3 Making judgments on reported stats
Viewers might leave the Player Page tab open for hours, days and months. This behaviour will affect the Average View Time as it will be dominated by higher values. You can review the Average Viewing Time along with the Median Viewing Time to make a reasonable judgment on the viewership for your Event/VoD.
If you have further questions on analytics, please don't hesitate to contact the StreamShark Support team with your query.