More Guidance on SharePoint Analytics

Nicki Borell

by Nicki Borell on 12/2/2014

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Article Details

Date Revised:

Applies to:
Analytics Processing Component, custom usage event types, Search analytics, SharePoint 2013, Usage analytics

This article completes all the content that I originally meant to publish in my SharePoint 2013 Analytics series.

I decided to create videos because they’re much better for visualization of analytics. I originally planned three more articles so I've broken this article into three sections below to match my original plan. Please review the background explanation in the links on TechNet and then watch the videos. I’ve included the scripts used in the video.

Search analytics

Review the section, Search analytics, published on TechNet:

Hand-on system video:

Scripts used in the video:


Usage analytics

Review the section, Usage analytics, published on TechNet:

You can create up to twelve custom usage event types by using Windows PowerShell. You have to add code to the place where the event occurs. For example, when a page loads, or when a user clicks a link or a button. This data is then sent to the Analytics Processing Component where it is recorded and processed.

Hand-on system video:

Scripts used in the video:


Solutions built on analytics

There are a couple of ways to get data out of analytics.

  • Out-of-the-box reports
  • Custom solutions with PowerPivot
  • PowerShell & custom code

You can find the out-of-the-box reports under Site Settings -> Popularity Trends or in Central Administration -> Search Service Application -> Popularity and Search Reports

Usage analytics:

Search analytics:

Custom solutions with PowerPivot

The Analytics Report data is stored in one SQL database table. It is stored in AnalyticsReportDB -> Table SearchReportData and this is so interesting because this table / data is not normalized! That means that it can directly be used for pivoting, etc.

Because Microsoft does not allow you to directly interact with SharePoint databases we need to extract that data and store it in a separate database as shown in the video.

Hand-on system video:

Getting report data using PowerShell

You can also get report data using PowerShell. To do this, you also have two separate namespaces to get the data for Usage Analytics and for Search Analytics

Get usage report:

$searchApp.GetRollupAnalyticsItemData …

Get search report:

$searchApp.GetSearchReport …

Hand on system video:

Scripts used in the video:


Topic: SharePoint Search 2013

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  • so my usageanalytics refuse to open in excel, its says its corrupted but the search analytics open fine.. I thought maybe this is because of the compressedformat that you mentioned in your first video but did not in this one.
  • So my usageanayltics wont open in excel, I thought maybe its because of the compressed format which you talked about in your first video but did not address in the follow up
  • It appears that the links to Download Related Files are not working. I'm interested in getting the SSIS package for extracting data and using it in PowerPivot