Data integration and data imports

Overview

Sitefinity Insight provides insights to marketing professionals by analyzing broad range of data to deliver reports and recommendations for optimizing the customer experience across channels. Since data is spread across disparate systems, you need a way to integrate the data coming from different data sources, that is, systems or sites, so that marketing professionals get reports and information for exactly what they need.

For example, for the specific needs of acquiring comprehensive data and reports about contacts on your site, your data center may import data from both Sitefinity CMS and Salesforce. Out of the box, Sitefinity CMS provides you with data tracking of the visitors’ behavior on your site, sending the collected data to the dedicated data center. You can import periodically snapshots of your Salesforce data using CVS files. As a result, all acquired data about visitors is centralized, unified, and set in the dedicated data center for further analysis and reporting.

Data sources and data integration

The following table summarizes the sources, from which you can integrate and connect to data.

Data source Connection Data import query
Sitefinity CMS To connect your data center with Sitefinity CMS, you use the Sitefinity Insight connector. Once you connect, Sitefinity CMS starts pushing data to Sitefinity Insight straight away. Communication with Sitefinity CMS is constant and is not configured in the cloud, but rather controlled by the connector. That is why Sitefinity CMS is considered to be externally configured, in relation to Sitefinity Insight.
For more information, see How do I connect.
None required.
You need administrative experience with Sitefinity CMS.
CSV files To import interactions or contacts data with CSV files, you need to make sure the data to be imported is in a specific format, so that Sitefinity Insight can process and use this data. For details, see CSV files format.

You import contact and interaction data from other systems by uploading CSV files. You can create the CSV files from many data sources, for example Excel.

For details, see Import data from a CSV file.

Other data source To connect to any other system, you need the relevant system credentials and the Sitefinity Insight API key. For details, see API key. For more information, see Work with the Sitefinity Insight API and Capture server-side data with .NET SDK.

Data imports configuration

One of your tasks when importing data is to define what type of data gets imported and how. This may be, for example, what the marketing department wants you to track and extract as data from the specific system. You may want to extract data that relates to a specific interaction or data that provides information about specific attributes of contacts.

Depending on what type of data you want to import, you must set different import configurations - set different properties of the import. For each data import configuration, you need to write a separate data query, be it an SQL query or JSON template query. Once you select how to import data from the data source, the query template changes to reflect this.

The following sections describe in more detail the query configuration options - the type of data to import and the query settings.

Interactions

Interactions represent activities contacts complete, for example download whitepaper X. Sitefinity Insight uses the sentence data model to collect data. The sentence is the data unit that holds the information of what user activity was completed on the website, by whom, and when. The data model consists of:

  • Data source
    The system, in which the contact completed the interaction.
  • Subject
    The contact that interacted.
  • Predicate
    Describes the actual activity that comprises the interaction. In the example above, the predicate is download.

NOTE: The predicate you define during data import configuration becomes an interaction choice when you define conditions and rules for marketing metrics for analytics and reports. Depending on your scenario, the predicate needs to be unique.

  • Object
    The entity, with which the contact interacted.
  • Timestamp
    Tells the system when the interaction occurs.
  • IP address

Contact mapping

When you aggregate contact data from different sources, it is necessary that this data contains information about the user identification in the respective systems. Visitors are usually mapped to contacts when they log in or after they enter information in Sitefinity CMS forms. With this type of data import, you aim at mapping the contacts from the current data source to contacts from another data source through their IDs, so that Sitefinity Insight identifies the visitors from different sources as one and the same contact and uses these details in the contact profile.

Thus, contact mapping describes how a contact is represented in different systems. For example: mydomain.com/Contact1 <-> CRM/ContactA

For more information, see SubjectMapping.

Contact metadata

Contact metadata comprise any additional information about a contact, apart from contact ID. This includes email address, company, phone, location, and so on. Contact attributes are represented by subject metadata.

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