Pathfinder shows all of the events (nodes) and sequences of events (paths) that users take within your product during a specified time, measured by event totals. All paths in Pathfinder are tracked within individual sessions. This means if you are sending us events from our HTTP API or through another pipeline, you must send a session property ('Session ID' or a custom session property) with the event in order to accurately view the event flows of your product.
Table of Contents
You can view both outgoing and incoming paths to a specified event, and Pathfinder will show you paths of up to fifteen steps in depth.
Outgoing: To view the actions or events users take after a given event, select “starting with” in the dropdown menu and then select your starting event.
Incoming: To view the events users take before a given event, select “ending with” and then select your ending event.
Chart Control Panel
The left module of the chart control panel allows you to pick and choose which events you want to focus on in your Pathfinder report. The default selection is '[Amplitude] Top Events', which will show you all the possible paths coming from the start node you have picked. The dropdown will give you all possible events that occurred after the previous event. If you select a particular event then only that particular node will be highlighted. Pathfinder allows you to see paths of up to five events at a time.
You can also narrow down your paths by segmenting the data by user properties or cohorts by using the right module. You can click on the "Users" dropdown to utilize our account-level reporting feature or use the "+where" clause to segment your users.
You can set a threshold for the minimum size of all rendered nodes. This can be done by changing the “representing at least” percentage in the bottom module of the chart control panel.
Once nodes are rendered, every path between those nodes is displayed. By default, the threshold is set to 5.0% and is also the maximum limit. You can set the threshold to as low as 1%. Using the default threshold would mean two things:
- If an event node is less than 5%, that node and any paths that would have followed are collapsed or hidden. In the below image, the boxed area has no outgoing paths because there are no immediately following nodes that are greater than 5%.
- Similarly, we do not render paths from nodes less than the threshold, meaning these paths will not appear as incoming paths into a rendered node. Instead, these paths would appear as a gray area at the bottom of the node, as denoted by the boxed gray area in the below image.
Adding more paths for a deeper analysis
Pathfinder has the ability to go 15 steps deep to understand your users' behaviors. In order to add more steps, adjust the settings and click "+Next Step" to continue to add up to 15.
In addition, you can group (expand) any number of event types by any number of properties to see the exact paths that are relevant for your analysis. Note: expanding a property does not apply to the root node thus if you expand an event, the event becomes the expanded version. The event selected for the expansion is no longer a valid choice in the Steps as you can't filter on the event and also expand it.
Collapse Repeated Steps
The "Collapse repeated steps" toggle is useful if you have an event that users fire many times in succession. For example, let's say you want to know what users do after the 'Create Record' event. However, users commonly create many records in a row, and so the Pathfinder report will not tell you much.
If you select the "Collapse repeated steps" option, then the Pathfinder report will collapse all repeated nodes into one. The resulting report will show you what comes after the collapsed nodes.
We can see here that most users now fire the 'Search Content' event after creating a record.
Once you select an event, we will generate all the incoming paths of up to 4 event nodes that meet the following conditions:
- If the event node is an [Amplitude] Start Session, which depends on if you are looking at incoming paths.
- If the node is greater than or equal to the threshold and if the node has an incoming path.
If you click on a particular node, Pathfinder will only highlight paths that lead into and out of that particular node and this is the same functionality as manually selecting that particular event in the left module of the chart control panel. Additionally, the black section of a node denotes all paths where the next event was '[Amplitude] End Session'. The "Other" node is the aggregate of nodes that fall below the threshold you've set. Lower the threshold to show more individual nodes.
In the below image, we verbalize certain sections of the Pathfinder report.
If you are using our default 'session_id' to group events into sessions, events in a given session will ordered by event_id. If you are using a custom session property to group events into sessions, events in a given session will be ordered by 'event_time'.
You can also use the date picker to choose a more specific time range to analyze your data within and can switch between "Last", "Between", and "Since".
Saving the Report
You can save and name Pathfinder reports by using the "Save" icon in the top right-hand corner above the chart. Note that you cannot pin Pathfinder reports to dashboards but you can search for them in the Search tab in Amplitude.
You can hide certain events from appearing in a Pathfinder chart. If you do this, the path will simply collapse and exclude those steps. For example, suppose we have the path:
- Event A -> Event B -> Event C
If you were to hide Event B, the path will collapse to:
- Event A -> Event C
This can be done one of two ways: globally or specific to a single chart.
You can specify events to be excluded from Pathfinder charts by editing the event 'Visibility' in the Settings page.
Specific to a chart
You can exclude events by clicking on the 'Choose Events To Exclude' button under 'Hide Noisy Events'. From there, you can specify the events you would like to hide from the dropdown.
You can also click on the red minus sign in the bottom right corner of the event directly in the chart.