As customers and visitors interact with your online channels, BlueConic creates profiles for both known and anonymous visitors. Individual users might have several different profiles because they visit on different devices and browsers. Using the profile merging feature in BlueConic, you can consolidate disparate profiles based on rules and matching unique identifiers.
Watch the video: Overview of Profile Merging in BlueConic
Configuring profile merging rules
In the BlueConic Settings > Merging section you can create a set of rules that control when two visitor profiles are merged together. The rules trigger a profile merge based on whether one or more profile properties contain the same value or both contain a specified value. You can add multiple subrules to a rule in order to create a sophisticated rule that is based on a match or a specific value found in several different profile properties.
Notes on creating profile merge rules
- You can only merge profiles that are in the same BlueConic Domain Group and that have a permission level 2. Profiles will not be merged if they have different permission levels.
- You can only create a new rule based on profile properties that contains a unique identifier. This requires that in Profile Property management the checkbox in expert settings for [Unique identifier] is checked.
- When merging, the matching of profile property values is case-insensitive. So if profile A has the value test@TEST.com and profile B has firstname.lastname@example.org, these profiles are eligible to be merged.
The BlueConic Settings > Merging Section
In this section, you create the rules and/or subrules that determine when profile merging occurs. The rules are based on matches found between the values of a profile property (or properties) in two visitor profiles. If more than one rule is created, they have an "OR" relationship with each other. In the case of more than one rule, the visitor profiles will be merged if either of the rules have a match. For example, if you add two rules, Rule 1 and Rule 2, then the profile merging will take place when Rule 1 has a match or Rule 2 has a match.
To create a rule click [Add rule, based on property] and select a profile property from the drop-down list.
The drop-down list contains only profile properties that are configured to be a "Unique Identifier", so if you are missing a certain profile property it is probably not marked as a "Unique Identifier."
When you add more than one rule, they are separated from each other in a bulleted list. For example:
In the example above, profiles will be merged if the value of either the "Email Address" property or the "CRM ID" property in two visitor profiles match each other.
Merging is not retro-active. In other words, when you save the changed merge rules the changes will only be applied from that point in time forward.
Merging is a powerful tool. To ensure that merges happen accurately, in real time, and at scale, BlueConic has some guardrails in place.
Each rule can have zero or more subrules. The subrules allow you to create a sophisticated rule that bases the merging on not one but two or more matching criteria. Subrules have an "AND" relationship with the main rule as well as with each other. For example, if Rule A has two subrules, Subrule 1 and Subrule 2, then the profiles will only be merged if Rule A, Subrule 1 and Subrule 2 all match at the same time.
To add a subrules, follow these steps:
- Click [Add Subrules].
- Click the "<select property>" link in the subrules.
- Select the profile property for the subrules from the available categories. See Profile properties for complete information on working with profile properties. Note: Profile properties that are not selectable in the Segments tab appear in the list(s) of available profile properties in italic font. Typically these are profile properties that are not filterable.
- Click [OK].
- Select the type of match the value of the profile properties in the subrules must have. There are two different types of matches:
- Same value - Merge if the value of a profile property in a visitor profile matches the value of the same profile property in another visitor profile.
- Value - Merge if the same profile property in two visitor profiles has the specified value. Note: The match on a specified value can only be used in a subrules.
- Click the "same value" link in the subrules. and select the radio button next to the type of match you want to use for the subrules. If you select "The value", enter the exact string that must match in the profile properties.
- Click [OK].
- Click [Save]. The merge rule and its subrules are saved. For example:
Deleting rules and subrules
To delete a rule or a subrules, hover the mouse over it and click the Delete icon that appears to the right of the rule.
Profile merging strategies for identity resolution
How the values of individual profile properties are merged is determined by a merge strategy. Each individual profile property can be assigned a unique merge strategy. To understand how profile properties with different values will be merged together in a visitor profile merge, you can consult the merge strategy for the profile properties that exist in your visitors' profiles. The merge strategy types are described below. To understand the merge strategy, consider that there are two visitor profiles — Profile A and Profile B. In the hypothetical profile merge described below, Profile B is merged into Profile A (Profile A replaces Profile B).
|Merge Strategy type||XML value||Description|
|Keep Both||BOTH||The value(s) of the property in Profile B are added to the value(s) of the property in Profile A. For example, if the value of the property in Profile A is "politics" and the value of the property in Profile B is "sports", then the values for the property in Profile A become "politics" and "sports".|
|Value of current profile||KEEP_CURRENT||The value(s) of the property in Profile A are retained.|
|Sum||SUM||The values of the two profile properties are added together. The values of both profile properties must be integers (no decimal places). For example, if the value of the property in Profile A is "20" and the value of the property in Profile B is "30", then the value of the property in Profile A becomes "50".|
|Highest||HIGHEST||Keeps the highest value. The values of both profile properties must be integers. For example, if the value of the property in Profile A is "20" and the value of the property in Profile B is "30", then the value of the property in Profile A becomes "30".|
|Lowest||LOWEST||Keeps the lowest value. The values of both profile properties must be integers. For example, if the value of the property in Profile A is "20" and the value of the property in Profile B is "30", then the value of the property in Profile A becomes "20".|
|Most recently updated value||LATEST||Keeps the value(s) of the profile property that was most recently updated. For example, if the value of the property in Profile A is "Gnu" and was set on 13/07/2016 and value in Profile B is "Gnat" and was set on 22/05/2012, then the value of the property in Profile A remains "Gnu".|
|First stored value||OLDEST||Keeps the oldest or first value stored for the profile property. This is the default merge strategy for the "Origin of profile" (level 1, level 2, and level3), "First visit," and "Entry page" profile properties.|
|Undefined||-||If the profile property does not have a <mergestrategy> tag assigned to it, then the "Keep Both" merge strategy is used.|
Merge statistics line graph
You can view a line graph that shows values related to BlueConic profile merge activity. For complete information, see Merge statistics line graph.