Looking for a more trusted, reliable, and self-serve way for its teams to access user behavior data across its apps and desktop, Ancestry turned to Mixpanel—giving product managers real-time insights to help improve user retention.

Cross-device behaviors tracked
Confidence and trust in data
Democratizing data for all teams
Company

Ancestry is the largest for-profit genealogy company in the world, operating a network of historical records and websites. With products including its best-selling AncestryDNA kit, the company gives subscribers the tools they need to learn more about their lineage through AI-powered hints that surface records and ancestors.

Goal

To grow its subscription business, Ancestry’s product managers needed to understand what was attracting its best customers so they could find and nurture more like them. Answering these difficult questions meant the team needed to reevaluate its behavioral analytics strategy and toolkit which relied on its product analytics team pulling insights from Adobe Analytics—limited their speed and depth of user understanding.

Solution

Having a list of requirements for the new analytics tool they needed, the Sr. Technical Product Manager of Product Data, Roopa Gidugu, set out to find an alternative that was secure, had ease of use, depth of analysis, good customer service, and one that could connect with Tealium and the team’s data warehouse. Through her search, she discovered Mixpanel was the clear winner—satisfying all of Ancestry’s requirements.

“Our analysts had to create visualizations for Adobe data in Tableau for other teams to be able to understand it because you really have to master Adobe to use it confidently. With Mixpanel, anyone can pick it up and learn about our customer behavior, digging deep into metrics that matter to them, and know that the data is accurate and trustworthy.”

Roopa Gidugu, Sr. Technical Product Manager of Product Data
Results
Tracking cross-device behavior

Before Mixpanel, Ancestry had Adobe Analytics tracking on desktop but had limited visibility into their customers’ behavior on mobile. Employees couldn’t track the actions they cared about on mobile, and mobile and desktop behaviors were divided between separate data layers—so employees couldn’t trust the limited mobile data they had. Now with Mixpanel, the teams can instantly analyze the full customer journey. If a customer researches the family history subscription on mobile, Ancestry can follow up with an offer on the web. Using this complete user view, the team is improving engagement and lifetime value by reducing points of dropoff and nudging users towards behaviors associated with retention and conversion.

Building data trust

Maintaining a trustworthy and reliable analytics implementation can be tricky, but Mixpanel provided the resources and guidance Ancestry needed to put the right systems and processes in place. Mixpanel’s Lexicon feature allows Product Managers to find information for any event, event property, or user property, so they know how to interpret their data. Plus, Ancestry can categorize events by adding tags, such as “Purchase” or “Mobile”, to help anyone on the team quickly find the event they’re looking for.

Enabling product managers with self-serve analytics

With trustworthy data and easy-to-use reports for retention, funnels and flows, seven product teams across Ancestry are being empowered to answer their own questions without needing an analyst’s help. This frees up their analysts’ time to focus on more strategic initiatives and allows product managers to better influence KPI’s, like retention and driving users to purchase a family history subscription. By integrating analytics into the organization’s workflows, everyone can use data to be more strategic.

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