How to Use UTM Codes in Your Digital Marketing Campaigns

how to use utm codesAny successful digital marketing campaign is powered by data. But data-driven campaigns are only possible when you collect that data properly. One essential tool used by digital marketers for data collection and segmentation is UTM codes. UTM codes help you build unique URLs for different marketing campaigns, making it possible to properly segment campaign traffic in platforms like Google Analytics.

Below, we outline how you can quickly and simply set up and use UTM codes within Google Analytics for your digital marketing campaigns.

UTM Codes: The Basics

A UTM code (short for Urchin Tracking Module) is a piece of code that is attached to a page’s URL. This code makes it easy for analytics programs to track where users are visiting your website’s pages from. By creating a new, unique UTM code for each campaign that you wish to track, you can easily isolate data to compare one campaign against another.

UTM codes are composed of five different elements, also referred to as parameters. Three of these parameters are required for all UTM codes. Two are only used in certain cases.

The five parameters are:

  • Campaign Name – utm_campaign: This is the name of your campaign. (i.e. “summersale”)
  • Campaign Source – utm_source: This is where you are running your campaign (i.e. “facebook”)
  • Campaign Medium – utm_medium: This is the type of link used to direct traffic to your site (i.e. “bannerad”)
  • Campaign Term – utm_term (optional parameter): If you are running a PPC campaign, this is the keyword term used.
  • Campaign Content – utm_content (optional parameter): If you are running multiple campaigns with the same name, source, and medium, you can add an extra keywords with this parameter to differentiate them.

Setting Up UTM Codes

Getting a UTM code set up for your campaign is simple, thanks to Google’s URL Builders and other similar tools. With Google’s URL builders (available for web and email ads, as well as mobile-app ads), you simply enter your website’s URL and each of the parameters you are using. Google’s tool will automatically generate a unique URL with the proper UTM parameters for your campaign. You will want to create a unique UTM code for every campaign that you are tracking in Google Analytics. This way, you can isolate each campaign individually.

One important point: make sure you use the same spelling for shared parameters. For instance, if you are running multiple campaigns for your summer sale, make sure to use “summersale” for the Campaign Name of each campaign. If you are running multiple campaigns on Facebook, you will want to spell “facebook” that same way every time in the Campaign Source parameter. Note that UTM parameters are case-sensitive, so capital letters matter.

UTM Codes & Google Analytics

When you’re in Google Analytics, you can easily track and compare different campaigns based on their UTM parameters. Simply go into Traffic Sources > Sources > Campaigns to see an overview of all campaigns listed by the Campaign Name parameter. In other areas, like the Explorer, Ecommerce, and AdSense sections, you’ll be able to drill down by additional parameters, like Campaign Source and Campaign Medium.

UTM codes make it easy to track and compare how social media campaigns perform on Facebook vs. Twitter, whether you’re seeing more clicks from banner ads vs. sidebar ads, or how different ads perform within the same campaign. This way, you can go ultra-granular when fine-tuning your digital marketing efforts, helping you build smarter campaigns and optimize results.

Get more out of digital marketing by choosing the digital specialists at Qiigo. Call (888) 673-1212 today to learn how you can unlock your brand’s digital potential.

Are You Missing Out on Google Tag Manager?

google-tag-manager

Perhaps one of the most underutilized features Google offers, Google Tag Manager (GTM) is easy, free and reliable. GTM provides marketers with flexibility and the ability to focus on marketing as opposed to marketing technology. With GTM, marketers can add and update website tags with ease and without expense.

Let’s take a look at why you should be using GTM.

Easy to Use. The easy web interface allows marketers to manage website tags. It’s designed to be easy to use so you don’t need to be in constant contact with your IT team. You can verify new tags are operational before you activate any changes to the site.

Works Across Platforms. Anyone can use GTM whether they use Google Analytics or another measurement program. Supported programs include Adwords, Google Analytics, Universal Analytics, GDN Remarketing, comScore, AdRoll, Bizo, and others.

It’s Free. Really, it’s free. Pretty limited risks associated with a free product. You get better management without having to hassle your IT team. It’s a win-win for sure.

Improves Universal Analytics. Google Analytics accounts are migrating to Universal Analytics and GTM is recommended when implementing Universal Analytics. With Universal Analytics, you’ll have access to new features including custom dimensions and metrics. Universal Analytics allows users to make changes within the GTM interface.

Loaded with Features. GTM is rule-driven. It allows marketers to create custom rules and macros. It also comes with a wide range of tools which make tagging significantly less complicated.

You can learn more about Google Tag Manger by clicking here.

Google Analytics Now Features Demographic Targeting

analytics demos

Your advertising can now get even more targeted when you take advantage of Google Analytics’ new demographic and interest targeting. Analytics now provides access to information on users’ age, gender and interests. This new demographic targeting information can be found in the audience section of Analytics.

According to Google, the addition of demographic targeting will allow you to “see not only how many of your users visit over a date range, but also who those users are, and how their behavior varies by attribute.” With a better understanding of your website’s visitors, you will be able to:

  • Segment Analytics data
  • Gain a more clear understanding of how converting and non-converting visitors differ
  • Analyze how visitor behavior varies by demographic category (age, gender, etc.)
  • Refine ad campaign strategies

Google does caution that these reports “may only represent a subset of your visitors.”

So, why would you want to use the demographic and interest reports generated by Google Analytics? If your website caters to a specific type of customer, these reports could have some real value to you. For example, if your business sells products specifically targeted to men 25-54, you may want to segment your advertising to only attract those who meet this profile.

Additionally, you can use this information to reach difference audience groups with customized messages. For example, if your business has a two product lines, one that targets college students and one that targets parents, you can use the demographic information to target different ad content to each group.

How does Google gather this demographic information? Some information is gathered through the use of cookies. Cookies are attached to browsers and can be used to identify the gender or age range of the user based on the sites they visited. Google also partners with some sites that provide the demographic information of the people on their website, such as social networking sites. Finally, Google uses the demographic information of individuals on their own sites to enhance these reports.

To gain access to these valuable reports, you must update the code on your website. This is a relatively simple process. Google provides detailed instructions on updating your website code here.

It is important to note that if you intend to enable the demographic and interest reports in Analytics, you may need to update your website’s Privacy Policy. Please review Google’s recommendations on Privacy Policy updates here.

If you have questions about how to use the new demographic and interest reports to enhance your use of Google Analytics or if you are concerned about updating code on your website, please call Qiigo today at (404) 496-6841. Our internet marketing team can help.

Google Encrypts All Keyword Data

The other shoe has dropped. Google has announced it will no longer supply any keyword data on web traffic searches. This move has been positioned as a way to further protection for Google users. Whatever the reason it is sure to cause pain to marketers.

encryption

The switch means that all searches will now be by encrypted using HTTPS and no keyword data will be passed on to site owners. Without keyword search data, site owners will not be able to track or segment keywords using web analytics software.

Search Engine Watch reached out to Google for an explanation as to what fueled this move. Here’s what a Google spokesperson had to say, “We added SSL encryption for our signed-in search users in 2011, as well as searches from the Chrome omnibox earlier this year. We’re now working to bring this extra protection to more users who are not signed in.”

Let’s look back at the sequence of events that led to this point.

In May 2010, Google announced its first foray into encrypted search. Then in October 2011, any Google user who logged in started to see their searches encrypted. This was positioned as a privacy policy aimed at protecting their users. At the time, Google estimated that only 10% of searches would be impacted by this new privacy setting. Results from those searches would show up as “not provided” visits in analytics. Over the past two years, the encrypted search umbrella was expanded to include more and more searches until it was estimated that as many as 50% of all searches were coming up as “not provided.”

Google will still provide keyword data for ad clicks. This is leaving many to speculate that this is the reason for the total encryption…forced use of Google AdWords. Whatever the reason, marketers will certainly loose access to all their organic keyword data.

Yahoo and Bing still provide keyword data. Recent reports show that Google retains 67% of the search market with Bing in second place at 18% and Yahoo coming in third with 11%.

Do you have questions about how encrypted search will affect your business? To learn more about keyword analysis and the effects of Google’s encryption strategy, please call Qiigo at (404) 496-6841.

Gain Insight with Multi Channel Funnels From Google Analytics

Conversion tracking tells you when visitors to your site buy your product, complete a form, schedule an appointment, or do something that you want them to do. Setting up conversion codes is the basis of a successful online marketing campaign because it allows you to track how your website is doing and how your customers are interacting with you.


Currently, all the credit for closing the sale goes to the last ad, search or referral your customer clicks on before the conversion. Wouldn’t it be great to know what other marketing channels are playing an integral role in getting your customers to that final click? Now you can!


Multi Channel Funnels from Google Analytics is designed to help you track the role website referrals, searches, and ads play in a conversion. These new sets of reports will also tell you how much time has passed between a visitor’s initial interest and his or her purchase. With Multi Channel Funnels you will be able to:

  • Gain insight into which channels customers interact with during the 30 days prior to conversion
  • See which channels initiate, assist, and complete conversions.
  • View interactions with virtually all digital channels, including paid and organic searches, affiliates, social networks, and display ads.

For more information about how Multi Channel Funnels can benefit your marketing campaign, call Qiigo today.



Get a Sticky Landing Page that Minimizes Bounce Rate

bounceYou’ve just checked out your landing page stats and your bounce rate is through the roof. Wondering what is going on? Lots of clicks for your online ads, but no one is sticking around to find out what your page has to say? It’s a common problem. Here are a few simple reasons why your landing page may not be as “sticky” as it should be.

  • Your Ad and Your Landing Page Don’t Mesh. Do your ad and your landing page tell the same story? Do they have the same feeling and leave the same impression on visitors? If not, it’s likely those visitors are jumping off as soon as they land. Create that “stickiness” factor by ensuring you have created a connection between the messages on both pages.  If your ad is warm and cozy and your landing page is slick and cool, you are going to turn people off.
  • Give Clear Directions. Do you have a call to action? Is it clear? Be concise and direct. Tell visitors to your site what you would like them to do. “Click here to receive $10 off your order!” Don’t make them guess or jump through hoops to figure things out.
  • Don’t Be A Show Off. No one wants to hang out with a know it all. Use an easy, conversational tone that sets your visitors at ease. Speak their language and use a tone that is comfortable for them, make them feel welcome.
  • Keep It Simple. Don’t overload your landing page with too much copy. Keep it simple, make it easy to read. Keep sentences short and focused with crisp and concise thoughts. No long winded rambling monologues. Think in bullet points.
  • Don’t Rush It. Don’t be that seedy sales person who misses all the social cues and goes in for the hard sell. Take the time to build rapport with the visitor. Don’t demand the whole enchilada as soon as your visitor arrives.

If your bounce rate is high and your landing page could use a little “stickiness”, contact the Qiigo team.  Let us help you improve your landing page structure including engagement strategies that will decrease your bounce rate. For more information call (404) 496-6841 or (888) 673-1212.

 

 

15 Things Your Website Should Be Doing…But Probably Isn’t

Southeast Franchise Forum LogoPresentation to the Southeast Franchise Forum

It’s not Al Gore’s internet anymore!  MySpace, Google, Facebook and YouTube are changing everything!  If you’re not capitalizing on their dominance, you’re slowing your company’s growth!

Today’s consumers–and today’s franchise buyers–are increasingly sophisticated and use the internet more and more every day.  For shopping, for news, for selling their “stuff,” for keeping in touch with family and friends, for learning, for recommendations, checking on their favorite sports teams, singers, actresses, and for finding the best franchise in which to invest!

If your company is not keeping up with the rapid changes on the internet–you’re falling behind. And it’s obvious!  Your site is “old” if it hasn’t had a major facelift in the last 3 years!

There are 3 main points of focus for Franchisor Websites and we’d like to spend some time discussing how the internet can impact each:

  • Prospecting for, and Signing, New Franchisees
    • Search Engine Optimization
      • Focus on Niche Keywords
      • Repeat them on your Homepage
    • Pay Per Click Advertising–Google AdWords, Yahoo Search, MSN Landing Pages
    • Geo Targeting
    • Educating Prospects
    • On Line Reputation Management
    • Sales Presentation: Webinars
    • Video Demonstrations & Testimonials
    • Email Marketing
  • Finding Clients & Customers for Your Franchisees
    • Building Your Brand
    • Creating a Buzz
    • Social Media or Social Networking
    • Each City (or Unit) Should Have a Page
    • A Media Room where Press Releases and Articles are posted for the Media.
    • Coupons to Drive Traffic to Stores
    • Geo-Targeting
    • Public Relations
    • On Line Reputation Management
    • Video Demonstrations & Testimonials
    • Surveys
    • Customer Newsletters (Talk to the People that will Listen)
    • How Do You Overcome Negative Postings on the Internet?
    • Social Media–Facebook
    • Email Marketing
  • Communicating with Your Franchisees
    • Operations Manuals
    • Forms for Royalties
    • Dashboards
    • Chat Rooms-Bulletin Boards-Blogs
    • Educational Webinars
    • Surveys
    • Franchisee Newsletters
    • Posting Advertising Materials
    • Voice Over Internet Protocol (VOIP)
    • Quarterly Town Hall Meetings
    • Best Practices Examples
    • Knowledge Repository
      • Presentations
      • Proposals
      • White Papers
      • Training Modules
    • Daily/Weekly News
    • Calendar of Events
    • Team Web Sites
    • Internal Metrics
    • E-Learning: Training for Franchisees & their Staff
  • Technical Decisions: Do Customers & Franchisees Use the Same Website?
    • Can Franchisees post their own sites?

Sites You Should Review:

  • YouTube.com; Facebook.com; MySpace.com; LinkedIn.com; CopyScape.com; SpyFu.com; Go-To-Meeting.com; MyMeeting.com; Google Analytics; Twitter.com; Google Alerts; Yelp.com; AngiesList.com; Wikipedia.org

Point to Ponder: Is Your Website Your Number 1 Lead Generator or an 8-ton Dinosaur that’s Embarrassing You?

Contact Qiigo today to find out how we can help with your local franchise marketing.