Comparing and Contrasting SAP Analytics Cloud Story Page Types

By Dan Griffin

Table of Contents

SAP Analytics Cloud (SAC) is a versatile tool for data visualization and business intelligence, offering various page types to help users create compelling and informative stories. In this blog post, we will compare and contrast four distinct SAC story page types: Responsive, Canvas, Grid, and From Smart Discovery pages. Understanding their unique features and use cases will help you choose the right page type for your data presentation needs. 

Out of the Gate

Right out of the gate, we can eliminate ‘From a Smart Discovery’ as a page type because it is not. Smart Discovery is a feature in SAC and a great tool if you are unsure where to start building your story pages. With Smart Discovery, you can ask natural language questions about your data. SAC will visualize that data for you and allow you to try different things before adding them to your story pages.

Also, it’s worth noting that if you choose From a Smart Discovery as your starting point, you will not be able to use SAC’s Optimized Design Experience and will be stuck with the Classic Design Experience (This will be covered in more detail in an upcoming blog post). The results from a Smart Discovery will be placed on a responsive page.

One other thing to note is that you can have a mix of all the page types within one story. So, in a single story you can have a Canvas page designed to be printed or at a specific pixel width for screens, a Responsive page for mobile users, and a Grid page to view the data in a traditional table structure. 

Page Types and When to Use Them

SAC Page Types Key Characteristics When to Use
Responsive Page
  • Designed for creating responsive and mobile-friendly stories.
  • Automatically adjusts the layout and content to fit various screen sizes and orientations.
  • Supports a variety of widgets and charts for data visualization.
  • Offers a user-friendly experience on different devices, from desktops to smartphones.
  • Use Responsive Pages when you need your SAC story to be accessible and fully functional on mobile devices and tablets.
  • Ideal for creating reports or dashboards that need to be viewed and interacted with on-the-go.
Canvas Page
  • Provides a blank canvas for creative design and layout customization. 
  • Use Canvas Pages when you require a fixed size story page. 
Grid Page
  • Offers a classic table structured layout. 
  • Provides traditional table sorting and filtering user experience. 
  • Use Grid Pages when you need to present data in a structured and organized format. 
  • Ideal for situations where you want to compare and analyze multiple data elements simultaneously. 
From Smart Discovery
  • Tailored for guided data exploration and discovery. 
  • Utilizes smart algorithms to automatically suggest relevant visualizations and insights based on your data. 
  • Offers a streamlined and intuitive experience for uncovering hidden patterns and trends in your data. 
  • Use From Smart Discovery Pages when you want to quickly gain insights from your data without the need for extensive manual chart selection. 
  • Ideal for exploring data sets and identifying key findings with ease. 

Comparison and Contrast

Layout & Flexibility Customization Use Cases
  • Responsive Pages automatically adjust content for various devices. 
  • Canvas Pages offer fixed-size pages. 
  • Grid Pages provide a structured table layout. 
  • From Smart Discovery Pages, guide users through insights. 
  • Responsive Pages prioritize mobile friendliness. 
  • Grid Pages offer structured layouts but limited customization. 
  • From Smart Discovery Pages, automate visualization selection.
  • Choose Responsive Pages for mobile accessibility. 
  • Use Canvas Pages for fixed sizes. 
  • Use Grid Pages for structured data presentation. 
  • Consider From Smart Discovery Pages for quick insights.

Wrap Up

SAP Analytics Cloud provides a diverse set of story page types, each catering to different use cases and user requirements. Responsive Pages ensure mobile-friendliness, Canvas Pages offer fixed page sizes, Grid Pages provide traditional table structure, and From Smart Discovery Pages simplify data exploration. Selecting the right page type depends on your specific goals and the audience you want to engage with, ensuring that your SAC story effectively communicates your data-driven insights. 

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