What Is A UTM Code, and Why Is It Important for Digital Marketing?
Your social media managers do great work in utilizing popular and suitable social media sites to promote your brand and market your products.
But how do they check their performance? Through landing page testing tools. But, analytics software like GA4 only determines the number of visitors who landed on your page through all channels combined.
How would you know which social media site is acquiring the highest number of visitors to your website? There is no simple way to get this number. Here UTM tracking comes to the rescue.
It is a method that can pull up this data in seconds. Sounds unbelievable? Yes, but it’s true. Keep reading to understand this excellent method and why it is essential for digital marketing.
Table of Contents
UTM Code Defined
A UTM (Urchin Tracking Module) code is a bit of text that you can add to a link to produce Google Analytics data for your campaigns.
Google acquired its analytics tool from Urchin Software Corporation in 2005. The current version of Google Analytics software is GA4 or Google Analytics 4. You can track the codes in GA4 to alter the way you go about digital marketing.
UTM Parameters Defined
UTM parameters are tags you include at the end of your URL. When a user opens that link with UTM parameters, the tags are moved back to your analytics software for monitoring.
Why Should You Use UTM Parameters for Tracking?
You can get insights about how your audience engages with your site by appending UTMs at the end of your URLs. Therefore, it’s crucial for SEO companies in Dubai to understand the UTM tracking process.
According to Neil Patel, “UTM parameters are stubborn entities that stick to your links, even when you switch to different networks and mediums.”
Suppose a user took your URL (with a UTM attached) from Facebook to share on Twitter. This link will be considered a share from Facebook.
BuzzFeed found that their content gets shared across social media platforms in a branching tree fashion.
Social media users often copy-paste URLs from one site to another while sharing content online. What happens is UTMs stay with their URLs and may offer to deceive information for hybrid social media sharing.
It is a catch, but you can go around it. After someone shares a social media post on a platform, remove the UTM snippets attached to the URLs.
But there is another catch — if a user then shares the now-cleaned link on apps like WhatsApp, Messenger, or Gmail, it shows up as direct traffic in your GA4. Unfortunately, this misleading data then ends up in your dark social traffic.
What is the Use of UTM Parameters in Digital Marketing?
Brands use various channels to promote their digital marketing campaigns. You will be shooting in the dark without knowing which channel is working well and which one needs improvement.
Therefore, digital marketers came up with the idea of UTM codes. These pieces of text will inform you about the platforms your visitor possibly comes to.
Suppose you put up your company’s Google My Business listing. Searchers will reach your GMB profile’s URL, and your analytics tool will record the traffic. However, you won’t have an idea of the traffic’s direction without UTMs in place.
With UTMs tied to the links, you get the details on which social channel’s URLs are earning the most traffic.
UTMs offer you data on the performance of your campaigns
Sometimes your social media team put in a lot of effort, money, and time in managing a platform’s marketing, but you aren’t getting the desired results. With knowledge of this poor performance, you can recreate your methodology or perhaps concentrate on another social platform.
On the other hand, if your UTM tracking tells you that a specific platform is getting loads of traffic, you can start focusing on it more than others.
You can even rethink your marketing campaign’s approach for that platform to make it even more focused.
What can you find through UTMs?
You can find out the social platform name which is earning the highest number of visitors to your website.
You can get the data in the revenue chunk earned by that social media site. You get the % of traffic earned by email versus social media.
Businesses can monitor all these parameters without spending a penny. They only need a Google Analytics account and a few UTM codes.
Are UTMs enough to understand your campaign’s performance?
We have already discussed the limitations of UTM tracking. Still, they offer you a tidier snapshot of your marketing campaign.
To start, you create custom links for your content and follow UTM best practices.
How Can you Create UTM Parameters with a URL Builder?
UTM parameters work well in determining the URLs, most efficient in driving users to your pages. Google provides a systematic way to attach UTMs to URLs — Its URL Builder.
However, you need to determine if you wish to monitor information in Google play, apple’s app store, or Google Analytics.
Fortunately, GA’s help center guides you through this process.
Here are the steps:
1- Enter your website’s URL
2- Enter your campaign’s medium, source, and name.
3- You may add your campaign’s content and paid keywords
4- Hit the submit button.
Campaign Medium: Users might utilize it to determine the medium, such as QR code, Cost Per Click (CPC), affiliate, or social media.
Campaign Source: It is the vendor/platform origin of the traffic, like an email newsletter or Facebook.
Campaign Term: Users track their key terms using this parameter during a paid Google ad campaign. You may employ it in the display AdWords campaigns to find the aspects of your customers.
Campaign Content: It is a valuable parameter that gives you data that helps you in the A/B testing of ads. Businesses can utilize it to tell apart links that direct toward the same URL.
Campaign Name: It is only to determine whether your campaign relates to a product promotion or brand awareness.
UTM.io or the Effin Amazing UTM Builder is a great chrome extension for building UTMs. It works by storing your most used keywords as presets and automatically populating your URLs with them.
Advice Related to UTM Tracking
Our experience has taught us a few tips that assist you in easily determining your site’s traffic sources.
1- Keep a spreadsheet of your tagged links
2- Use standard naming conventions to dodge confusion and keep your UTMs reportable
3- Use dashes consistently in your UTMs
4- Refrain from repeating and keep the codes simple and detailed
Companies should teach their employees to use Google Analytics to track UTM metrics in the best way possible. You need to quantify your target demographics, customer persona, etc.
Make sure you monitor information in GA via a medium, source, or campaign name. It helps Google analytics inform a user about the source of the clicks and the name of the campaign that drives those clicks to their site.
You should make a distinct URL for each marketing campaign to utilize the UTM codes. Then, you can conveniently allot the generated URL to an ad campaign that propels visitors to your page.