Run Reports and Track Results

Learning Objectives

After completing this unit, you’ll be able to:

  • Explain best practices for tracking sends.
  • Name standard Marketing Cloud reports.
  • Schedule and automate a report.
  • Explain what you can achieve through A/B testing.

Your account is set up, you can send emails, and now you’re ready to communicate with your customers. But how do you know the messages you send are working? Let’s take a look at a few different ways you can track message effectiveness and adjust for greater success.

Tracking

Have you ever sent a message and wished you could know whether people were actually reading it or clicking any of the links? Marketing Cloud makes it easy for you to get that information and more for every message you send. After you start sending emails, follow these steps to access tracking data.

  1. Navigate to Email Studio.
  2. Click Tracking.
  3. Click Sends to view a list of your sends.
  4. Click an email for a deeper look into how your subscribers interacted with that email.

Tracking Details interface for an email in Marketing Cloud.

After you select a specific email, you can view tracking data, including:

  • Total and unique opens
  • Total and unique clicks
  • Unsubscribes
  • Delivery rate, including bounces
  • Forwards
  • Click activity and exactly which links were clicked
Note

Note

An individual email is only deemed “Delivered” when there isn’t a bounce receipt.

Tracking Tips

If you want to make the most of your tracking data, there’s a few things to consider. Start by sorting  sends into folders for different kinds of sends, such as test sends, triggered sends, or A/B Testing sends. Message opens are tracked using a tracking pixel in your emails. If a user turns images off, the message isn’t considered “opened.” This can cause clicks to be higher than opens. Also, if you use HTML Paste when creating emails/templates, you are prompted to add the tracking pixel code. 

In addition to overall date, you can view data for specific subscribers and even export and share tracking data. Keep in mind that tracking data stays in your account as long as your account exists.

Reports

Marketing Cloud provides dozens of standard reports to track the effectiveness of your campaigns. You can run reports manually or schedule them to run automatically. You can also choose who receives the reports. Check out some examples of what you can learn from these reports.

Report Type Description
CloudPages
Access the data you collect from Smart Capture forms using the CloudPages Data Extension on any CloudPages Landing Page, Microsite, Facebook Tab, or MobilePush Page.
Contacts
Learn the total number of billable contacts in your account or data about an individual contact.
Discover
Discover provides templates with measures and attributes preselected to answer a specific business question. Each template suggests a specific chart type and applicable features in Discover, such as custom calculation, data filters, or conditional formatting. Use one of the templates or start with a blank page and build your own report.
Email
Review email performance by device or attribute, examine email success in specific campaigns, discover what day is the best performing send day, get statistics on impression tracking, and much more.
Journey Builder
See tracking and engagement metrics for emails sent in journeys, aggregated by day or a specified period of time.
Mobile
Get the total number of subscribers and unsubscribes for SMS, tracking information about SMS messages, and keyword activity summaries. Run reports for push message tracking results. Review a summary of outbound messages sent to LINE followers, including the delivered message count.

The best way to get to know Marketing Cloud reports is to spend time exploring them and creating your own. Let’s give it a try.

Navigate to Reports under Analytics Builder.
The Marketing Cloud navigation menu with a mouse cursor selecting Reports under Analytics Builder.

This takes you to an overview page where you can select from a catalog of reports or choose specific filters to customize the report results. Click View Catalog to review a list of all reports. 

Not sure which report to start with? Use the filter options to narrow the list of reports by your specific business value, channel, app, report type, or report features—such as how the data displays. The list of reports refreshes to provide reports that match your filters. Save the filters if you want to reuse them.

The list of filters available in the Report Catalog.

Click Create next to a report. Now you can specify your report parameters (those depend upon the type of report you selected) by dragging available fields into the filter area. The report refreshes with the data. 

Now that your report is ready, you can email, FTP, download, or snapshot the results. You can also click Schedule icon to schedule the report to run automatically. 

The report interface with a mouse clicking the Schedule icon.

Set a start date and time, choose how often the report runs, specify the file type for the report, and add email recipients. This is a great way to keep your stakeholders and yourself informed with the latest results of your Marketing Cloud campaigns!

The interface for scheduling report results.

Reporting Tips

  • When you set a custom date range, the system generates a report based on data as it appears at 12:00 AM on that date. To include data from the end date, set the end date parameter to the following day. For example, if you want to include data from May 1 through the end of the day on May 17, set May 18 as the end date.
  • We recommend shorter data ranges for reporting parameters. If you select 6 months or a year, it can take a long time to run the report, depending on how much data is in the account. The report stops running if it’s active for more than 3 hours.
  • Where noted, some reports are not available to view as a web page and require you to select a format for file export.
  • Larger reports that you can’t view as a web page must be delivered by email or sent to FTP.
  • Reports specific to a single send can’t be automated (unless using a triggered send definition). For example, email performance by domain is a report that you can't automate.
  • Reporting capabilities are only available on standard data extensions that are a core part of the Marketing Cloud. Reports for any customer created data extension are considered custom.

A/B Testing

If you want to get even more sophisticated with testing and tracking your message success, check out the A/B Testing feature in Marketing Cloud. A/B Testing is a method of market testing in which you send two versions of your communication to two test audiences from your subscriber list. You can track which version receives the highest unique open rate or highest click-through rate and then send that version to all remaining subscribers.

Continually testing these variables over time allows you to optimize your campaigns to deliver more targeted and relevant messages to your subscribers. Through automating the testing process, you can save valuable time and resources. You can test the following elements.

  • Subject lines
  • Emails
  • Content areas
  • From names
  • Send times
  • Preheaders

The best part is, Marketing Cloud automates a lot of the heavy lifting for you. You set conditions for the test and Marketing Cloud randomly sends the two versions out to a subset of your selected subscribers. The system then tracks and selects a winning version. You can set up your test so that the winning version is automatically sent to the remaining subscribers.

Check out A/B Testing information Salesforce Help when you’re ready to try it out.

You’re Ready to Go!

Congratulations on completing the initial setup of your Marketing Cloud account! You learned new Marketing Cloud terminology, configured your account defaults, set up users and roles, created business units, ran reports, and much more. Now it’s time to learn more about specific Marketing Cloud applications. Complete the Create and Send Targeted Emails with Email Studio trail to start building emails and get even more best practices for deliverability. Learn how to set up Content Builder for your team to effectively use in the Content Builder Basics badge. Explore other Marketing Cloud badges to learn additional applications and tools.

Resources

Keep learning for
free!
Sign up for an account to continue.
What’s in it for you?
  • Get personalized recommendations for your career goals
  • Practice your skills with hands-on challenges and quizzes
  • Track and share your progress with employers
  • Connect to mentorship and career opportunities