UTM best practices

Introduction

UTM parameters are customized tags that can be added to URLs. These parameters that do not change the content, but enable analyzing how the visitor got to the link. They can be used both in Google Analytics and Exponea. Exponea automatically recognizes some UTM parameters from links as well as adds some into all the emails sent. For more info, please follow this guide.

Best Practices

Using UTM parameters alone is not enough to be able to analyze them successfully. Here are few tips that can help you use them effectively:

  • Create a naming convention
    • be consistent in naming (have a guideline to be shared within the team) – do not use different terms in different campaigns to prevent duplicates (e.g. fb, facebook, etc…)
    • use dashes instead of underscores, percentage and plus scores – This helps different browser and search engines recognize the words
    • use only lowercase – when analyzing, the terms are case-sensitive, and it prevents having different duplicates
    • use simple, easy-to read naming – don’t use internal numbering system or other terms that are not obvious
    • each parameter should provide different, but useful information -e.g. when you already use NL03052017 as a campaign name, it is useless to put newsletter into source.
  • Use correct parameter for different information:
    • Campaign Source – The platform (or vendor) where the traffic originates, like Facebook, Google, etc..
    • Campaign Medium – You can use this to identify the medium like Cost Per Click (CPC), social media, email, sms, affiliate or QR code. This can be used to e.g. differentiate links from paid traffic, profile info links, posts on wall, etc.
    • Campaign Term – You’ll use this mainly for tracking your keywords during a paid AdWords campaign.
    • Campaign Content – If you’re A/B testing ads, then this is a useful metric that passes details about your ad. You can also use it to differentiate links that point to the same URL, e.g. from a picture, from text link, from a button, etc. If there are multiple links with the same URL, they should each have a different UTM parameter.
    • Campaign Name – This is just to identify your campaign. Like your website or a specific product promotion, or date of the newsletter, etc.

You can use this table as a guide when creating your own UTM tags.

Category Campaign UTM Medium UTM Source UTM Campaign
cpc/ppc Google Adwords ppc adwords campaign_name
Facebook Boost ppc facebook campaign_name
Email Newsletter email newsletter campaign_name
Onboarding campaign email onboarding A/B (default: A)
Event Driven campaign email event event_name
Personal campaign email personal campaign_name
Blog Educative blog educative blog_title
Inspirative blog inspirative blog_title
Feature blog feature blog_title
Social Facebook social facebook.com post_title
LinkedIn social linkedin.com post_title
Web Catalogs catalogs domain_name campaign_name
SEO seo domain_name campaign_name
PR pr domain_name article_title

Updated on October 2, 2017

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