Datrics developed complete on-chain and off-chain user and marketing analytics for NEAR Foundation


In the rapidly evolving world of blockchain, solid analytics is paramount. Datrics, with its expertise, has established itself as the analytics partner for the NEAR Foundation. By leveraging data-driven strategies, Datrics ensures that NEAR's business & marketing efforts are both efficient and effective.

The NEAR Foundation is a non-profit, non-beneficiary foundation based in Switzerland that supports community-driven innovation with a specific focus on open-source Web3 projects and tooling on the NEAR Protocol.

In 2021, the NEAR Foundation shared a brief with Datrics to develop a set of analytical tools that could identify the most promising projects built on the protocol, support them, and issue grants, to facilitate the growth of the NEAR ecosystem. It was the start of a partnership that, within six months, would become a foundation for data-driven development and decision-making for the entire project's ecosystem.

"We were looking for an experienced development and data analytics partner who could own the strategizing and development process and deliver the exact result our business needed" — says David Weinstein, Chief of Staff and Head of Analytics at NEAR Foundation.

Key Facets of Datric's Engagement with Near:

On-Chain Data Analytics

On-chain data analytics involves analyzing transactions and activities directly recorded on the blockchain. Datrics delves deep into this realm, extracting valuable insights from the NEAR Protocol. This form of analytics is crucial for understanding user behavior, transaction patterns, and the overall health of the blockchain ecosystem.

On-Chain vs Off-Chain

While on-chain data provides insights directly from the blockchain, off-chain data offers a broader view from external sources. Integrating both on-chain and off-chain data by Datrics ensures a holistic understanding of user behavior, enabling NEAR Foundation to make informed decisions.

Off-Chain Data Analytics

Off-chain data analytics encompasses data sources outside the blockchain, such as web behavior, social media interactions, and GitHub repositories. Datrics seamlessly integrates this data, complementing the on-chain insights and providing a comprehensive analysis that drives NEAR's strategies.

The Challenges

The task that the NEAR Foundation set for Datrics was to build end-to-end analytics that could measure the ecosystem's health and key success metrics. The analytical system was conceived with the ambitious goal of obtaining insights throughout the entire portfolio of projects developed on the protocol. These included community activities, overall contributions to the product, and user retention.Here's a brief introduction to what features Datrics had to deliver:

  • Identification of the most promising projects at the stage of their inception for issuing additional grants for development.
  • Analytics for referral programs.
  • Tracking user reviews and overall satisfaction from the ecosystem.
  • Building analytics funnels inside the off-chain and on-chain data.

Three serious challenges further complicated the ambitious task:

  • The entire technology landscape around the blockchain is non-trivial. There are no pre-built analytical tools, as in the case with well-established web analytics.At the moment, the development of blockchain is ongoing, and there are many complexities associated with accessing data. You can't just pull the data and build a dashboard like you would in Google's Data Studio. You need to find a way to connect and understand which data to access and analyze. It requires people with a high level of expertise who are rare and expensive.
  • The data is located in multiple different places on and off the chain. To build a seamless analytics funnel, one needs to combine data from the web, blockchain, and other systems such as GitHub repositories. It can be tricky to link web behavior analytics and blockchain activity.
  • Navigating the realm of blockchain projects presents unique challenges. Unlike traditional platforms where tools like Google Analytics can be set up effortlessly, blockchain lacks such straightforward systems. David Weinstein highlights the intricacy of merging blockchain data with conventional web analytics as a pivotal hurdle for strategic business growth. Further complicating this task is the essential need to uphold user anonymity and aggregate data, ensuring user privacy remains uncompromised.

The Solution

It all started with a pilot period of 1.5 months. NEAR Foundation and Datrics worked together to better understand whether the partnership was a good fit for both companies.

"It came as a real surprise when, at the end of this period, Datrics managed to deliver more than some other companies committed to doing over the course of six or more months", says David Weinstein.

During this short period, Datrics managed to develop a complete set of analytics that covered the key components of ecosystem success including:

  • Number of smart contracts in active development (general metric for the developer activity on the platform)
  • Number of developers (Mainnet/Testnet/GitHub; full-time/part-time)
  • The average number of daily commits
  • Community activity on social media and community channels like Telegram or Discord

The Results

On average, the development of analytics within blockchain projects still leaves much to be desired. This means that systematic work with key marketing and growth metrics remains impossible. Blockchain analytics has traditionally lacked the consistency and reach of traditional web analytics.

The uniqueness of the analytical system developed for NEAR Foundation lies in building a seamless connection between the web activity and its on-chain component.

By combining its analysis of web and on-chain user activity, NEAR Foundation managers can identify and amplify weaknesses in user acquisition and effectively adjust the retention strategy.

The entire set of analytics is presented as a series of dashboards that allow custom filtering and provides insights into the success of the NEAR community as both developers and general users.

Today, the set of metrics is widely-used at the company to identify and nurture the most successful projects in the NEAR ecosystem. The acquired data allows team members to identify strong product and marketing strategies and abandon weak ones by adjusting advertising budgets and prioritizing product development.

"After working with Datrics for more than six months, it's obvious we made the right choice in data analysts. We received unique results that helped NEAR enhance its business vision and become better partners for our community. When it comes to blockchain and web data, I can't recommend Datrics enough. The guys have unique skills and expertise in this market", concludes David Weinstein.

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