UTM stands for Urchin Tracking Module - and to be honest, that may be the last time you need to remember those 3 words. 'UTM' is globally recognised in the world of digital, so in our opinion the Urchin term can be tossed to the bottom of the sea with the others.
Simply put, a UTM code is a snippet of code appended to the end of a URL. This code is used to track the success of digital marketing campaigns and to pinpoint specific sources of traffic to your website.
UTM links are formed from your regular URL (www.mywebsite.com/blog for example) with a collection of extras bolted on after the last trailing slash. These parameters let Google (and other tracking / analytics tools) know a little more about the visitor's route to your site and are superb to differentiate and report on what is driving traffic.
You've probably seen plenty but never really paid that much attention to all the "stuff" at the end of a link. After all, you end up where you wanted to be didn't you? Little did you know that the long link on the top of your phone or your computer is telling the site owner quite a lot.
Instead of a basic link www.mywebsite.com/blog you will see the parameters which make the link look more like this instead:
It's not a new page on the site, it is just a collection of variables for tracking purposes.
It's quite simple really. The more you know about the visitors on your site, the more you understand about what is working in your digital sphere.
Information is key to making the right decisions and giving your marketing efforts the best chance of success.
Picture the scene: you're opening a new restaurant and pushing hard for opening weekend bookings.
You want to work out which medium of advertisement is getting you the most visitors to your site (and you've even managed to set up an online booking form so you are tracking visitors who complete that too).
Your three channels are paid advertising, paid social, and email marketing (all of which we offer by the way).
The URL will look something like this:
You need a different URL to show in analytics for this one to ensure visitors from social ads are tagged nicely in analytics. As a result your URL could look like this:
An email shot you are sending from a piece of software such as Mailchimp (there are plenty more) should have links back to your site. Although these systems will give you on-platform metrics, it is still key to tag visitors from your email campaign.
You'll probably have a collection of links in the email shot, but an example URL in this instance could be:
At the time of writing, Google's confirmed parameters were as follows.
Used to identify which ads campaign this referral references. Useto identify a specific ads campaign.
Useto identify a search engine, newsletter name, or other source.
Useto identify a medium such as email or cost-per-click.
Used for keyword analysis. Useto identify a specific product promotion or strategic campaign.
Used for paid search. Useto note the keywords for this ad.
Used for A/B testing and content-targeted ads. Useto differentiate ads or links that point to the same URL.
There are plenty of tools available to help make UTMs, but our go to is the one from Google - https://ga-dev-tools.web.app/campaign-url-builder/
Of course we can!
If you are looking to step up your digital game and start attributing your marketing spend / time to the elements of the mix that generate the most visits, conversions, spend or value then get in touch with our team today.
Look out for our future blogs on tracking UTM's in Analytics.