UTM settings can trace the origin of your web traffic and conversions. They are a valuable tool for measuring the performance of your marketing campaigns.
Want to know how many conversions have been generated from your latest email campaign or AdWords ads? This is possible with the UTM parameters. And we’ll see that it’s not as complicated as it sounds.
What are the UTM parameters?
The parameters allow tracing the origin of the traffic on the website, to identify the link that led the user on the page. You can embed UTM settings on all pages of your site. The three main UTM parameters are three in number:
Medium: It identifies the media used by the user. For example: “Social networks”, “Acquisition”, “Email”.
Source: This parameter is used to describe adding a finer level of segmentation. It allows adding a precision element to the first parameter (Medium). For example: Twitter, Google AdWords.
Campaign: You can use this parameter to identify the exact campaign that generated the opening of the link.
The UTM parameters allow analyzing the performance of your different mediums, your different sources, and your different campaigns. The goal of the UTM parameters, as with the attribution models (we devoted an article on this very recently), is to help you better analyze the ROI of your campaigns and thus manage your marketing budgets more intelligently.
How to create URLs with UTM parameters?
The best-known solution is to use the Google URL Builder. It is indeed a very simple solution to use and practical to start. Just paste the URL on which you want to add UTM parameters and set these parameters in the fields that follow.
The URL with built-in UTM settings is generated automatically.
But we would tend to advise you another method, very simple too and more satisfactory to us. It consists in creating a UTM builder on the spreadsheet. The advantage of this method is that it allows you to create “house rules”
Other UTM parameters
Apart from the classic Medium/Source/Campaign, you have the option to add other settings. This can be useful for more detailed mapping of AdWords campaigns. Here are some of these settings:
Utm_term = [keyword]: This setting is useful for tracking your AdWords campaigns, it can segment your traffic based on the keywords you are targeting. If you use the Google Builder, you do not need to fill in the keywords one by one, Google will complete this field.
ad = [ad name]: This setting allows you to track your ad-by-ad conversions.
Adpos = [adposition]: This UTM setting tracks your conversions based on the position of the ad in Google’s search results. This position identifies the best positions for your AdWords campaigns. This is a very interesting parameter because we often imagine that the most effective ads are always those in position 1 or 2, while sometimes the best visitors come from ads positioned in position 3 or 4. If it’s the case, you have the opportunity to make great savings by lowering your bid level.
Utm_content: Using this UTM setting allows you to differentiate similar content or links within the same ad.
How to analyze the results of your URLs with UTM parameters?
When someone clicks on a URL containing UTM settings (for example, an AdWords ad or link in your newsletter), the event automatically reverts to your Google Analytics reports. Note that it is possible to use tools other than Google Analytics to analyze the results of your URLs with UTM parameters.
To analyze the conversion data associated with your UTM settings, you must go to the “Acquisition”> “All Traffic”> “Source / Support” menu and select the type of conversion/objective you want to analyze. You then have access to the different sources and different media that allowed you to generate conversions/reach the goal.
You can also analyze conversions by the campaign (not by conversion type) by going to Acquisition> Campaigns> All Campaigns. This gives you a report showing all the campaigns with UTM parameters. Google Analytics offers several levels of analysis.
3 Cases of use of the UTM parameters
You now know how to create UTM parameters (via the Google URL Builder or via spreadsheet) and how to analyze your data on Google Analytics. Here are three examples of using the UTM settings.
1. Eliminate marketing channels that do not perform
The UTM parameters allow you to analyze the performance of your various marketing channels and thus identify those on which you must invest in priority. This is one of the most basic use cases, but also one of the most essential. Analyze how many conversions bring you to channel A, channel B, channel C. Compare these results to the costs of each of your channels. This will allow you to deduce, for each channel, a cost per conversion.
You’ll then be able to reduce or eliminate the investments on the highest cost-per-conversion channels and reallocate your marketing budget to the channels with the lowest conversion costs.
We assume that social networks are an important channel in your marketing strategy. But do you measure concretely the fruits of your efforts on the different social networks? Using automated UTM tracking allows you the most effective social networks for you that drive the most traffic to your website and conversions.
You can add UTM settings to each of the articles you post on your social networks and see which social network brings you the most traffic. This analysis completes the simple analysis by the number of likes and shares. You may find that it is LinkedIn that brings you the most conversions, even though you thought it was Facebook because of the huge number of likes on your posts.
There are several ways to analyze the performance of a newsletter. You can analyze the deliverability, opening and click rates from your emailing solution. But knowing how many people have received or opened your email is not enough. You can go further by adding UTM settings on each link within your newsletter. This also applies to all your emails in general. Just use the UTM parameter source_email and the Campaign parameter.