If you’re running any kind of digital marketing campaign, you’ve got to know which channels and efforts are effective and worth continued investment. This article explains a simple way to implement a tracking system: UTM codes. We’ll talk about what UTM codes are, how to build them, and where to find them in Google Analytics.
What is a UTM code?
A UTM code is simply a string of text added to the end of a URL. For example:
The UTM code doesn’t send visitors to a different page. Rather, it’s simply a way of making the URL more unique so it is tracked separately in Google Analytics under certain views.
UTM Code Details
Within a UTM code, you can specify the source, medium, name, term, and content related to the campaign on which your link appears. The only required parameter is source—the others are optional and might not apply to your campaign. See more information and examples on each of these parameters.
Let’s take another look at an example URL with a UTM code:
This URL sends visitors to the Full Windsor Services page. It also sends some additional information to Google Analytics, so we know how visitors got to the page. The code indicates the visitor came from the email version of our newsletter, and that it was our spring promotion email.
How do I build a UTM code?
At first, we highly recommend using Google’s Campaign URL builder. This tool allows you to simply input information into a form, and a URL with the correct syntax will be returned.
Tip: As you start using these codes more and more, it’s a good idea to develop standard naming conventions so your Analytics data stays clean.
Where do campaigns show up in Google Analytics?
The information shows up in lots of places in Google Analytics. Here are two places to find the campaign data fast:
- Acquisition → Overview → All Traffic → Source/Medium (shows traffic based on source and medium)
- Acquisition → Campaigns → All Campaigns (shows traffic based on custom campaign names)
Tip: If you’re just getting started with Google Analytics, it’s important to make sure your account is set up properly and you’ve established goals for your campaigns. Interested in having this set up for you? Get in touch!
Start Tracking Your Campaigns
We think UTM codes are a no-brainer! With minimal effort, you can get valuable insights for guiding future marketing decisions.