I think the biggest surprise for many persons was that they bought yesterday the Web tracking company Omniture.
For me it was a big surprise as well, even I was wondering what the does it make for sense that they did this.
I still have some questions about it, but there are a few points very clear to me:
It's not only that they have now bought Omniture, making them a big competitor to DoubleClick (Google) Atlas SearchSolutions (Microsoft) but as well many others. There are still many web tracking companies and no one has still a controlling stake at something or some parts.
But why would a design and a publisher company go towards Web tracking? That is like a bakery starting to sell Jeans. (Maybe in the word there is some bakery doing that but it's normal.)
So what comes into my mind are a few things..
- Integration from tracking within Flash.
This would be nice to be able to track the path of a visitor within your Flash website, so you have the same level of data as a HTML page.
I could imagine myself that they are working with Google and the other big Search engines to make Flash accessible for their Spiders and then with Omniture you have direct access to the behaviour.
- Integration of tracking within their online products.
At the moment they have a bunch of online service going on, for example Buzzword, Acrobat.com and Photoshop online. They are all based upon Flash and at the moment there is not any tracking possible as is for example possible with Google Docs. Google Docs fits directly in Google Analytics and maybe they will be offering this kind of integration soon as well.
This is the reason I hear the most around the internet, that it's for cross-selling reason, It could be easier to do some kind of cross-selling, but then I'm wondering to witch customers? A creative agency or department do have the need for online tracking, but in general the clients from Omniture do have their special Online Marketing department.
In this case I'm coming back from the example of the bakery selling jeans, there are Creative agencies and there are Online Marketing Agencies. Both have their specialities but they don't overflow that much.
Then in the large companies you have a Creative department, the geeks with the Macs, and you have the Online Marketing department, the geeks with their Firefoxes all pimped out. And they don't match.
I think this is the first acquisition in a trend and we'll see why Adobe went this way.
I hope they will be integrating analytics within their Flash services and Products online and maybe as well make a light version from Omniture, what will be free, just to get some counterweight to Google. Furthermore it would be very nice indeed to have a deeper integration of tracking within the applications online.
One thing is for sure, I'm really curious about the future and what it will bring.