Content Dashboard displays content performance

  • Updated

The Content Dashboard shows an overview of the following:

  • the number of Content items that Optimizely Content Recommendations processed
  • the number of unique topics (generated by natural language processing (NLP))
  • the average number of topics per content item

The graph shows when content was imported and ingested.

Image: Content Dashboard overview: imported content graph

Date labels are in dd/mm format.

Click Compare to compare data to the previous period for which data was gathered. A dotted plot line is overlaid on the current data, and you can see whether activity increases or decreases.

Image: Content Dashboard overview: compare import periods

Filtering lets you analyze your content repository differently to determine whether the content drives conversions and encourages prospects further down the sales process. For filtering examples, see Filtering Content Recommendations.

Image: Content Dashboard filters

The following scenarios describe several uses for the Content Dashboard.

  • A content editor wants to know which other topics are mentioned along with a particular topic of interest.
  • A content editor wants to reduce the content being created and keep it more focused.
  • A content editor wants to group content clearly and concisely.
  • A content creator wants to see which topics were extracted from a content item.
  • A website owner wants to know the most talked about topics across content.
  • A website owner wants to know where most of their content is across multiple locations. A content creator wants to see what topics they covered in a content item they just created.

In each scenario, you want to know which topics are published more and how content volume against each topic changes over time.

You have the following view:


The Topics view shows how often a topic appears in the processed content. In the following example, Investment appears four times in the content.

Image: Content Dashboard topics view


The Sources view shows the sources (URL origins, such as of content items. If a source is added, its content is ingested and processed. You can filter and save Sources views for frequent use and share a view with a linked URL. Saved filters are shown in the All Sources menu.

Image: Sources view

Add an RSS feed

An RSS feed (such as activates the source with an Active/Paused toggle.

Image: Add RSS feed

  • Title – Enter the name of the source from which you want to extract content.
  • Approval – Enable the approval of content from the source automatically.

    Unapproved content interactions are still tracked and contribute to profile optimization. However, they cannot appear as a recommendation to a user within a widget.

  • Output Display – Select the type of output you want to extract from the source.
    • Make the full content available
    • Only include the abstract
    • Only include a link to the original content
  • Override Existing Content – If content is ingested from another source, enable this option to override existing content with potentially new data from the new source. This saves space at the expense of losing access to older content.

When you click Save, the source is added to the list.

Image: Source list item

Content List

The Content List view shows each content item processed for tracking. The content list also displays associated sections next to content items, which helps you create filters to refine sections.

You can filter and save Content views for frequent use. Saved filters are shown in the All Content menu. You also can reprocess the content.

Image: Content list view

Get more details by clicking content items in the view. Details let you determine whether content is being ingested as intended. The details include:

  • Topics and their relevance (displayed by size)
  • URL
  • Source
  • Publish and import the date
  • Text content
  • Metadata associated with the content
  • Images linked to the content

Image: Content item details view

Reprocess content

You can reprocess content in the following situations:

  • You want to re-evaluate the topics picked up (because of NLP changes).
  • You want to re-evaluate the content body after content scraping fixes (for example, remove non-unique content elements on a page, such as a disclaimer).
  • The content has moved, and you want Content Recommendations to update the URL.
  • The content editor has changed the article.
  • The content editor has added or changed metadata, and you want to pick it up (want this to go into a section as a result; see case below).

Reprocessing content overwrites changes that were made manually to the content. Reprocessing does not re-evaluate flows. If the content no longer exists—for example, it was recently deleted—reprocessing automatically removes it.

To re-analyze content that is in the system (that is, content that is already ingested), do the following:

  1. To process content again, select All Content > Select All.

    Image: All Content: Select All

  2. Select Actions > Reimport, then click Apply to All Content.

    Image: Reimport content


The Sections view shows groups of content based on flow rules. You can assign multiple flows to a section. A piece of content can be in multiple sections, provided the rules for creating it are not mutually exclusive.

For example, you create one flow published before the X date and another published after the X date.

You define sections when setting up Content Recommendations. You can filter and save Section views for frequent use, and share a view with a linked URL. Saved filters are shown in the All Sections menu.

Image: Sections view

Click a section name in the list to edit its attributes.

Delete a section

Before moving a section to the bin, you should remove associated flows. This is because a content item in a removed section retains that section's label. For example, content1 is in section1. If you remove section1, content1 is still part of section1.

To remove an associated flow from a section, click Bin (trash can icon). To restore a removed flow, click Restore (back arrow icon).

Click Move To Bin to delete the section.

Image: Edit Section

Click View Content in the edit view to see the content that the section groups.

Image: View section content


The Flows view lets you create and view rules for sections. Create rules based on titles, URLs, or metadata to group content.

Image: Flows view

Click Create Flow, then enter a flow name and rules. For example, the following example flow, International sports, is defined as the Source being at least one of Episerver or, and the Topic is at least one of 2020 Summer Olympics, 2014 Winter Olympics, 2014 FIFA World Cup, or 2003 Rugby World Cup. The flow rules found two content items that are automatically given approval status. As other content items that satisfy these criteria are added, this flow will approve them.

Image: Create flow

Content is evaluated against each flow only when it is imported. Editing or reprocessing a flow does not re-evaluate that content against the flow. To re-evaluate content against a flow, click Apply to X existing content items. However, this affects content that matches the rules of the flow and not necessarily all content that was ever affected by that flow. A flow will never move content out of a section, which can be accomplished only manually through the content list, using filters and bulk actions.

  • Approve – If the criteria match, approve the content item.
  • Move to Bin – If the criteria match, move the content item to the Bin (denying content from being ingested).
  • Feature – If the criteria match and this is enabled, the content is given priority recommendation, even if the visitor has already interacted with the content.
  • Add to Sections – Click the field to select from existing sections where the content should be associated. For example, you might have a content and documentation sections about financial issues.

    You can create a section by entering a section name in the Add to Sections field.

  • Options – Content Recommendations show how many content items match the criteria. Click Preview to see the matching content. Upon viewing this, you may want to refine the flow rules. Enable the checkbox to apply the rules to existing content items when you click Save.

    Preview only shows ten items as an example, not the full list of items. (Image shows three.) To see the full list of content, mimic the flow within the Content Dashboard.

    Image: Preview flow results

Make changes to an existing flow

A section is a group of content. A content item can exist in multiple sections.

You can set up a flow as follows:

  1. Set up the original flow as follows:

    Image: Editing a flow

  2. Add another condition to make the flow more granular.

    Image: Adding conditions to a flow

  3. Filter the Content view by flipping the condition.

    Image: Flipping flow conditions

  4. Modify the flow action for when the content does not match the flow.

    Move to Bin deletes content from the instance; it does not remove content from the flow.

    Image: Move to bin

  5. Click Apply to X existing content items.

Troubleshoot flows

In the Options view, you can evaluate the existing content count to determine whether a flow is becoming less or more granular.

  • If the flow is becoming less granular, the count goes up for content that matches the flow.
    • Edit the flow and select Apply to X existing content items, which performs the flow action rules against the historical content and any new content.
  • If the flow is becoming more granular, the count goes down for content that matches the flow.
    • Use the content list filters to select content that previously matched this flow (essentially re-creating the flow rules) with the opposite of the more granular rule you were adding. Then, use the actions in the content list to perform the opposite of the actions in the flow.

The following list shows common flow changes, some of which do not produce the desired results.

  • A section has content it should not have, so you update the flow to be more granular and click Apply to X existing content items.
    • This only modifies a section moving forward, not retroactively. Apply to X content items does nothing because the content is already in the section.
  • A section has content that it should not have. You update the flow to be more granular and reprocess the content.
    • Reprocessing the content does not re-evaluate flow rules. The existing content stays in the section. Reprocessing achieves nothing but potentially eliminates manual updates to the content.
  • You added metadata to content to identify the section where the content should belong. You create the flow and then reprocess the content to pick up that metadata in that section.
    • Reprocessing content does not re-evaluate flow rules. Although the new metadata is captured, you need to run the flow with Apply to X existing content items after reprocessing or update the flow after the reprocessing.
  • A section does not have the content it needs, so you make the rule more broad and click Apply to X existing content items.
    • This is correct because historical content matching is added, and future content is evaluated against this when imported.
  • You create a section, produce a flow, and click Apply to X content items.
    • This is correct because historical content matching is added, and future content is evaluated against this when imported.


The Properties view lets you create unique tracking scripts for your site.

Your onboarding manager typically provides this. This feature is not commonly used.

Image: Properties view

You can add a web property.

Image: Add web property button

The Add Web Property view has the following fields.

Image: Add web property

  • Title – Enter the name of the property.
  • Hostnames – Enter domains and sub-domains you want to whitelist for content ingestion. Only domains or sub-domains on this list are ingested. Place each name on its line.
  • Collections – Enter a collection name (a theme or topic such as finance or retirement), or select from existing collections from a drop-down list.

When you click Save, the Tracking JavaScript view displays. This view has on-screen instructions to help you set up the property.

Image: Tracking JavaScript view: Options

  • User identification – Select the option that best describes the visitors of this property. In most cases, select the default option.
  • Automatic Event Tracking – Enable only if your site loads content dynamically.
  • PDF Tracking – Experimental. Enable to track PDF files.

Image: Tracking JavaScript view: Installation and Usage

  • Caveats – Contact Optimizely for a custom solution.
  • Canonical Tags – See Consolidate duplicate URLs.
  • Published Dates – Add article meta tags to your webpage. See
  • Include code – Add the following JavaScript code in the <head> tags.

    You need this only if you are deploying with a manual installation. You do not need to deploy a tracking script again with manual installation if Content Recommendations was installed from a NuGet package because tracking is included in that installation.

    Image: Tracking JavaScript view: Include code

  • Track Events – Optionally, add event calls (consume, like, dislike, share, comment, group, and exit) to the webpage to track other personalization events.
  • Tracking Conversions – Optionally, add a convert event to the webpage to track conversions.

    Content Recommendations cannot ingest granular conversion-level data, such as Order ID, price, and so on.

    Tracking JavaScript view: Optional functionality

Click Done at the top of the view.

To return to the Web Property view, click Tracking JavaScript in the right panel. Click Edit (the pencil icon) to update settings, such as for updating or removing hostnames.

Image: Tracking JavaScript button