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What You Can Learn from Google Analytics Training

Adding Google Analytics funnel settings. Evaluating the pages that draw the greatest number of website visitors. Learning what page created the most opportunity for conversion, or conversely, which page made your visitor lose interest and leave the website.

If any of these topics catches your eye, and if you are planning to focus on them in the near future, you have quite the ambitious set of goals for the new year. Start 2017 off on the right foot and tackle some of these key initiatives with the experts at Belo + Company by attending our Google Analytics training course.

I had the opportunity to attend our last training session, and I can assure you there are many important takeaways from attending the Google Analytics class. Today let’s focus on one of my biggest takeaways, and what you can anticipate learning in depth when you attend the live course February 2nd-3rd in Dallas.

What are UTM Parameters, and why are they important?

Digital marketing has evolved into a multi-headed hydra beast. Each time you feel you have mastered a marketing channel, two more magically appear. It’s a herculean challenge just keeping up, but learning which medium is performing best can help you determine where you want to spend your time and marketing budget to reach your target.

Tracking how a visitor lands on your website and following their journey through the site is crucial to understanding what your audience is looking for. Easier done when sharing your website from one source, on one medium and for one single campaign…but we all know that is not how real-world marketing works. Adding a custom URL with UTM parameters to every online promotional piece can differentiate, organize and track the effectiveness of your digital marketing initiatives.

Sometimes the challenge is not generating the traffic to your website, but actually being able to track which channel, medium or simply which link drove the visitor to your site.

In the past (and perhaps it’s common practice for you now), you would have to depend on the medium or source to track where web traffic was coming from. Now, through the beauty of UTM parameters, you can track which link is garnering the most traffic in the Google Analytics dashboard.

Are your banner ads performing better than your social media sponsored posts? Or is one of your banner ads performing better than the other based on size, search engine or device? Be even more accurate with your digital findings and determine exactly which source is reporting the highest return on your time and monetary investment by using custom URLs.

Getting started

There are five major parameters that go into UTM linking, but the what, where and which of UTM tracking is most important when creating your own URL. Once you have a grasp on these three aspects, you can build a link on your own or use Google’s Campaign URL Builder.

Below is an example URL to help walk you through the ins and outs.

The what: Campaign Medium

What medium is your URL linked to? Do visitors come to your site because they were shown an email button, banner ad or social media post? In our example the Campaign Medium is “banner.”

The where: Campaign Source

Where will the visitor find the medium the URL is linked to? If you want to track a social media post, ‘social media’ would be the source and the ‘sponsored post ad’ would be the medium. In our example, the Campaign Source is Google because we are using Google to post our banner ad.

The which: Campaign Name

To help organize and use keyword analysis, you can indicate which marketing campaign your ads are referencing. Classifying each URL built by campaign comes in handy when running multiple marketing campaigns at once. In our example we used google_analytics_training.

With the what, where and which entered, the builder automatically generates the campaign URL.

Adding parameters to use in custom digital marketing campaigns is crucial to your analytics success. Keep in mind that a custom campaign is any ad campaign not using the AdWords auto-tagging feature and can be done for desktop, mobile or apps using the Google Play URL Builder.

Join us for our next Google Analytics Training to increase your digital expertise and maximize your marketing ROI with the hands-on course that will help you tackle topics like this for your brand.

See you there!

* Vertical Nerve, which became part of Belo + Company in 2017, hosted these original Google Analytics Training sessions.