ClickScapes FAQs

Data and Methodology

What is the data source of ClickScapes?

ClickScapes is built using privacy-compliant web behaviour characteristics derived from telecom data together with demographic data, including EA's DemoStats and PRIZM. Telecom data were provided to EA in an aggregated and de-identified format. No personally identifiable information was provided. 

Are third party cookies used in the creation of ClickScapes?

No. The web behaviour characteristics fed into the ClickScapes modelling process are based on network traffic.

Is ClickScapes privacy-compliant?

Yes. All of the demographic data ingredients to ClickScapes come from DemoStats and PRIZM, privacy-compliant geodemographic data sources that have been trusted for decades. The web behaviour data ingredients are provided to EA in aggregated and de-identified form and subjected to minimum observation thresholds. The neighbourhood estimates are derived from EA proprietary models. In addition, certain sensitive web behaviours have been removed.

Does ClickScapes include smartphone and laptop data?

ClickScapes data captures web behaviours from all types of devices, including phones and laptops, however ClickScapes does not categorize these behaviours by device type. For example, ClickScapes reports how many visitors went to a particular website using any device, but it does not identify visitors to a website via a laptop.

It looks like some regional companies are not included. Why not?

Web behaviours are modelled and reported where they represent a significant level of activity relative to the population. To be included as part of the product, these activities must have a significant prevalence during a defined period over the past 2 years at the national, provincial or regional level. Where a web behaviour does not have a nationally significant amount of activity, it will be assessed for inclusion by province and/or region (major CMA) where there is a significant concentration of activity in the area in question, and the behaviour can be reliably estimated.  

Is international web traffic captured? 

ClickScapes is designed to capture the web behaviours of Canadians. Web behaviours for international visitors are outside the scope of ClickScapes and are not captured in the data.

How are emerging websites/apps captured in the data?

Web behaviours are included where they represent a significant amount of national, provincial or regional activity. Of course, this can vary over time. To be included in the annual web behaviour list, these activities must have a significant prevalence in the past 2 years. New apps, companies, interests and websites will emerge over time and existing ones may increase in popularity to warrant their reporting in ClickScapes. These behaviours are assessed quarterly for inclusion into ClickScapes. Web behaviour will only be removed on an annual basis as part of the annual product refresh. 

Do both home internet and mobile network data represent full national coverage?

There are two sources of web behaviour data feeding into ClickScapes. The first is a national database of the web behaviours observed on the mobile network. The second is a database of the web behaviours observed on the home internet network, which is collected from Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes, an area that represents three-quarters of the Canadian population. The home internet web behaviours for regions outside of Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec and the Maritimes have been estimated
using a series of machine learning algorithms that rely on observed relationships between home internet and mobile network web behaviour and local demographics.

How are big data-derived datasets like ClickScapes different from survey-derived datasets?

The web behaviour machine learning and spatial models underlying ClickScapes were built using big data. Big data differs from surveys in that they are not random samples of the population but rather real sensor data collected from very large subsets of the population. We have taken these data and, leveraging our expertise with geodemographic projections and modelling techniques, incorporated known population characteristics (from PRIZM and DemoStats) to enhance our estimates and adjust for the big data's collection method. In this way, EA’s traditional data have been used to make ClickScapes representative of the Canadian population, allowing for accurate, population-adjusted insights.

Why isn’t my website, app or company in ClickScapes?

There are two likely reasons why a certain website/app/company isn’t available in ClickScapes. It could be that our data provider is not currently capturing visits to the website in question, or it could be that the reported counts we are receiving do not meet our sample size threshold for the CMA, provincial or national-level estimates.

Product

How far back does the data go?

Home Internet web behaviour data and mobile network data are available in ClickScapes starting from January 2021.

Why are the counts the same for some apps and websites?

Native app usage and website visits are both being tracked by capturing the URL that is being queried. In certain cases, the app and website are supported by the same underlying URL. For example, opening the “Vanity Fair” app connects the user to vanityfair.com, the same URL used when visiting the Vanity Fair website. In these situations, we cannot distinguish app visits from website visits, so the count for the website variable is the same as for the app variable. These counts should be interpreted as “app or web traffic” instead of app-specific or browser-specific traffic.

Why are there fewer variables available for mobile network compared to home internet?

Variables included in ClickScapes depend on that variable being available in the source data at sufficient levels to meet the sample size thresholds. Fewer mobile network variables met those constraints than home internet variables. From a contextual perspective, it would be reasonable to see fewer mobile network variables as extensive web browsing is typically done at home when connected to a Wi-Fi network rather than while away from home and connected to a mobile network.

Why are there fewer variables available on a weekly basis when compared to monthly, quarterly and yearly?

This comes down to sample size thresholds. The shorter the time period we use to create our estimates, the greater the chance that the source data will not meet our sample size requirements. This is why more variables are available with monthly time periods than with weekly time periods. Any variables that meet the monthly thresholds are also available in the quarterly and yearly time periods.

Why are some variables not assigned to an interest category (i.e. unassigned)?

Tier 1 and Tier 2 interest categories are defined by our data source provider. It is possible that not all websites, apps and companies have been assigned to a respective interest category. We have decided to leave these variables unassigned until they are addressed by our data provider, at which time we will update the interest category assignments.

Can I get ClickScapes data for all levels of standard geography?

ClickScapes is available at all levels of standard geography down to the dissemination area (DA) level.

Can a website or app be found within more than one interest category?

Yes. While we have categorized websites and apps to a single Tier 1 interest category in ENVISION for display purposes, it is possible for websites and apps to belong to multiple Tier 1 and Tier 2 interest categories.

What are the differences between the ClickScapes and ClickScapes Trends products?

The main difference is the time periods for which data are available. ClickScapes contains data for yearly and quarterly time periods, reported as monthly averages (see FAQ #26 and #27) whereas ClickScapes Trends contains the same yearly and quarterly time periods as ClickScapes but adds in weekly and monthly time periods. ClickScapes Trends are updated monthly for the most current access to changing consumer browsing habits.

ClickScapes can be used for profiling website and app visitors and to better understand the web preferences of your customers or market, whereas ClickScapes Trends builds on those capabilities and identifies how those profiles and preferences change on a weekly or monthly basis, allowing users to identify and react to emerging trends. ClickScapes Trends licensees automatically have access to ClickScapes.

Update Cycle

How often is ClickScapes updated?

ClickScapes Trends, which contains weekly and monthly time periods, is updated monthly. ClickScapes, which contains quarterly and yearly time periods, will be updated annually.

When does ClickScapes get updated?

The monthly updates for ClickScapes Trends will be available in ENVISION around the 15th of each month and will contain the previous month’s data.

What is the time lag for ClickScapes Trends data updates within ENVISION?

We receive our source data around the 5th of every month and require about 7-10 days to process the variables for that month’s update.

Variable Definitions 

What does Home Internet refer to?

Home Internet is defined as web browsing activity that occurs via a residential Wi-Fi or ethernet connection using any device and can be best described as "at-home" web browsing behaviours. These are household-based web behaviours.

What does Mobile Network refer to?

Mobile Network is defined as web activity that occurs while connected to 5G/LTE/3G networks using any mobile device and can be best described as "away from home" web browsing behaviours. These are population-based web behaviours.

What are visit days?

Visit days are the number of days a website, app, interest category or company was visited in the specified time frame. The days reflect the total days and do not need to be sequential.

What are visitors?

Unique visitors are the count of total households (for Home Internet) or total household population 15 years or over (for Mobile Network) that visited a website, app, interest category or company within the specified time frame.

What are monthly visit days?

Monthly visit days are the average number of days per month that a website, app, company or interest category was visited in a specified time frame. This metric is only applicable when using quarterly or yearly time periods from the ClickScapes dataset.

What are monthly visitors?

Monthly visitors are the average number of unique visitors per month that visited a website, app, company or interest category in a specified time frame. This metric is only applicable when using quarterly or yearly time periods from the ClickScapes dataset.

How are years being defined?

There are three year periods available in ClickScapes. 2021, 2022 and 2023 follow standard calendar year definitions and are available for any mobile network or home internet variable.

How are quarters being defined?

Quarter time periods in ClickScapes follow standard calendar quarter definitions.

How are weeks defined and what days do they start and end on?

Week time periods in ClickScapes Trends start on Mondays and end on Sundays. Week 1 of any given year begins on the first Monday of that year (e.g. Week 1 of 2021 is January 4-10).

What is a website variable?

A website represents any web URL that is queried using a web browser connected to either a home internet or mobile network connection. Only websites that meet sample size thresholds are made available in the data. Note: browser-specific and app-specific traffic is available for some, but not all URLs.

What is an app variable?

An app represents any web URL that is queried via the use of a native app using any mobile device connected to either a home internet or mobile network connection. Only apps that meet sample size thresholds are made available. Note: browser-specific and app-specific traffic is available for some, but not all URLs.

What is a company variable?

A company variable represents a grouping of URLs (websites and/or apps) belonging to that company. The companies in ClickScapes are defined by our data source provider and not all websites and apps have been grouped into company variables which is why certain companies are in the dataset and others are not. How companies are defined, in terms of which URLs are included, is subject to change over time.

What are Tier 1 Interest Categories?

Tier 1 Interest Categories are groupings of URLs by high-level category. Websites, apps and companies are organized by Tier 1 Interest Categories in ENVISION, however, websites and apps can belong to more than one interest category. Tier 1 Interest Category variables variables allow you to analyze a more granular grouping of related apps and websites. 

What are Tier 2 Interest Categories?

Tier 2 Interest Categories are groupings of URLs by a more specific categorization than Tier 1. All Tier 2 interest categories nest within a Tier 1 Interest Category. Tier 2 Interest Category variables allow you to analyze a more granular grouping of related apps and websites.