Altmetric Blog

How to: what does each tab do in the Altmetric Explorer?

Patty Smith, 7th January 2021

The Altmetric Explorer provides search and analytical capabilities to help you understand trends and gather insights in Altmetric data. It also lets you run reports and download data for analysis using tools such as Excel. Explorer is divided into 7 tabs; you can dig into attention for any search by using the different tabs located at the top of the database. This quick overview will introduce you to each tab, but to learn more about the interface and searching, view an introductory guide for Institutions, Publishers, or Pharma

In the upper right corner of each tab, you will find two blue buttons:

  1. Export this Tab
  2. Save Search

The ‘Export’ button will allow you to download the data to a CSV file for additional analysis, or you may have access to the API, depending on your subscription. The ‘Save Search’ button makes it easy to save your search no matter where you are in the database. 

Highlights tab

The default homepage of Altmetric Explorer is the Highlights tab. This tab provides at-a-glance information, bringing interesting attention to the forefront. Divided into ‘data blocks’ with colorful visualizations, the highlights tab provides summary information with links to learn more. A summary of outputs and attention is located at the top of the screen. These summary numbers will change as you edit your search:

  • Total mentions: total of all mention types, i.e. twitter, news, policy, etc.
  • Outputs with attention: number of outputs tracked by Altmetric that have some form of attention
  • Total outputs tracked: overall number of outputs tracked, but not all have attention

Research Outputs tab

This is a great place to start browsing attention, and you’ll be able to quickly identify outputs that have the most attention by source type.This tab can be viewed with results arranged in a grid or a list. The default sorting is by highest Altmetric Attention Score, but you can sort in a variety of ways, including by news mentions, twitter mentions, or by mention timeframe. All research outputs have Altmetric donuts; clicking on a donut will open up the Altmetric Details Page, listing the full attention data for each research output.

Timeline tab

The Timeline tab allows you to assess trends in attention over time, helping you identify spikes in attention and see which outputs contributed to the spike. For any search query, view all mentions over time or filter by specific attention source types, e.g. news, twitter, blogs, etc. If you wish to view the individual mentions contained within a specific timeframe for any combination of attention sources, simply click on a bar in the chart. 

Demographics tab

In the Demographics tab, you can see heatmaps for four attention sources: Twitter, Facebook, News, and Policy. Each map shows the spread of attention around the world, revealing geographic regions that are discussing research the most, as well as regions that present opportunities for dissemination and growth. To view the mentions in detail, click on the country in the map or the name of the country in the corresponding data table. 

Mentions tab

The Mentions tab is a powerful tool, and you’ll often be redirected here to dig deeper. This tab presents all mentions related to your search query in a reverse chronological feed. Mentions can be filtered by attention source type, country, and mention timeframe. You can also craft queries for specific sources, i.e. instead of searching for all policy sources, you can limit to a particular source like the World Health Organization. You can also quickly surface internationally-recognized mainstream news attention by clicking the “Show Highlights Only” option.

Mention Sources tab

The Mention Sources tab makes it quick and easy to see exactly which sources and people (e.g., specific tweeters, news outlets, policy sources, and more) have mentioned your research the most. You can also perform these searches for content that isn’t your own to see how you compare to peers or competitors. It can help you answer questions like: 

  • Who are the most influential tweeters or bloggers in a field? 
  • Which policymakers are reading our outputs and referencing them most?
  • Which press outlets should we be targeting, and in which countries?

Journals tab

The Journals tab is a comparison table that displays all the total mention counts for different Altmetric attention sources, aggregated by journal. Within the Journals tab, you can sort the entire table by any attention source by clicking on its column header, allowing you to easily see which journals are performing strongly across specific sources.

To learn more about how to search Altmetric Explorer, visit our Getting Started webpage.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.