Visualisation to replay user session/journey

Hi community!

I am a complete newbie to ELK though have been using Discover for a few months to randomly investigate issues experienced by our end users. We currently use ELK to log most of the activity that happens on our SAAS platform which consists of native mobile and web apps.

I've been trying to find the best way to use Kibana's visualisation capabilities to represent specific user sessions and journeys. For example, our log captures when a users signs in to our app, when they create an account then subsequent screens they might browse.

What would be the best way for me to build a visualisation that represents such user journeys in a way that would be friendly for business users to digest? Are there any specific plug-ins that someone could recommend or is this best I try to export the log and use another piece of software (though I have not found anything that easily meets my needs).

Would really appreciate any advice as I really see ELK being a great all-round solution.

Bump :grinning_face_with_smiling_eyes:

I'm starting to think nobody has attempted this as it's not the right tool for my needs. Any suggestions on what might be a good alternative team?

Welcome to the community! Aligning your data to a customer journey can be a very powerful way to analyze your data and make it make sense to those reading your dashboards / analysis. There's a bunch of ways to do this but it really depends :tm: on your data and what your exact workflow is. here's a few thoughts from easiest to more involved. this is by no means exhaustive :wink: :

  • the "unique count" of sessions in visualizations (cardinality aggregation under the hood) is your friend. make sure you aren't counting raw logs but reducing for the number of sessions.
  • organize a dashboard that analyzes the journey in logical order that matches your application. On a dashboard I particularly like including images to help guide the user through many panels. A "funnel" visualization of this metadata is really useful. You can actually include images on your dashboards by using the markdown mode of TSVB (bit of a kludgy solution, we have some plans to improve this in the future)
  • Canvas is a very powerful way to visualize data in an almost powerpoint-like representation of the data. Here you can use chevrons to show how the different indicators influence each other.
  • I've seen people go really crazy with vega and a custom image. This is better to show telemetry of facilities but can also be used to build a very custom view of your journey with live visualizations overlaid in the right places
  • If you need to filter sessions that do this and that then you might want to transform your data as its processed (and periodically updated) to create an index that has a document for each session. This data modeling will afford you additional more detailed session-level analysis options.

There are other vendors out there that do more session-recording type things but if you goal is to look at things overall (and not dive into session recordings for design purposes) then I think Kibana is a fantastic solution for this!

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Thanks Graham, you've provided some ideas and insights that are really helpful!

My immediate need is to answer some qualitative questions based on a per user level. For example, understanding that User A logged in to the app, then interacted with the app in a particular way (based on our logs tracking API calls from each screen). Then, immediately after look at User B and how this user had their (most likely) different journey/experience based on different interactions.

From the visualisation perspective, I will try to experiment based on your suggestions - which in themselves I need to research and learn more about now!

Many thanks.

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