Guide to Data Warehousing and Business Intelligence
There are two type of Internet Applications: authenticated and unauthenticated.
An authenticated application is one that requires a login ID and password. An unauthenticated application allows visitors to use the Internet application without signing in. An authenticated applications can generate much business intelligence about customers, their preferences, interests and purchases.
To obtain a user ID and password, web users are normally required to register. They are normally required to provide a valid email address, their name and address and some personal profile information such as hobbies and interest. This data is stored in a database that can be integrated with web usage data from web server logs.
Sometimes users aren't required to submit a registration over the Internet. Using data from their internal corporate data, the business sends a login ID and password to their customers. Each time the login ID is used, data is collected about the Internet session.
Whether or not a visitor is authenticated, most Internet Applications retain statistics on application usage such as how the visitor navigated through the application. This is required to identify technical issues and usage patterns.
By leveraging data available from authenticated applications, subsequent visits can be customized for users.