The Importance of Measuring Traffic Sources and Settings for Websites
Traffic is the lifeblood of any, especially young business. Today, most people are so focused on new ways to generate traffic that they no longer have the opportunity to explore their actual sources of traffic. This can lead to a serious mistake, because a close look at traffic sources will never stop giving a wide range of ideas.
If you need valid data about the incoming traffic to the site, you need UTM tags. We’ll look at what UTM tags are, how to use them, and how they can help.
For any online store — both a large site and a small site — conversion by traffic sources is important. Not always 100% of the traffic fulfilled in full force. There are situations when the whole site is fine, but one section of the advertising campaign gives a high conversion, and the other, on the contrary, pulls everything down. But how do you know which of your marketing efforts really drive customers to the site?
UTM tags help you get detailed information about each traffic source. For example, determine which sections of the advertising campaign bring the least amount of profit. This will help to quickly respond to changes on the site and redistribute the advertising budget.
UTM tags or Urchin Tracking Module are simple tags that allow you to create custom URL links to collect marketing analytics and determine the user’s “route”. Tracking visits to sites is carried out using five parameters – they form an additional set of characters attached to the end of the URL, separated from the main link by the ? sign, and the parameters are separated by the & symbol.
The example contains three parameters of the UTM tag:
- _source is the source. The parameter shows the specific location of the link: Twitter, Facebook, VK, Instagram and so on (twitter, newsletter);
- _medium – placement, for example, a link in an email or on a social network (example: banner, email);
- _campaign – associates a link with a specific promotion, event, product, promotional code, and so on (example: spring_sale);
It is not necessary to use all the parameters – it depends on the goals and the definition of additional information.
Two other parameters are used less frequently, but they are necessary if you are tracking visitors who come to you from paid ads:
- _term – defines paid keywords related to your ad. For example, if someone is looking for “Christmas decorations”, these two words will be included in the tag.
- _content – allows you to specify ads when you click on a specific place or button in a banner or text.
Often marketing strategies include placing a single link directing to one page on a site – such solutions do not allow you to track traffic. The only way to take control of the stream is to change all advertising URLs and see how many clicks on each link occur.
The same post on Twitter and Facebook with a link with UTM tags will help to compare the number of clicked visitors – this will be the most important indicator, and not the number of views of the publication itself, subscribers or likes. Or an electronic newsletter, which is about discounts in a short period of time and free delivery – UTM tags will help determine what attracts visitors more.
It is financially profitable to understand which of the created advertisements in a different style of writing and design, leading to a single product, is more useful. This analysis is possible thanks to the UTM marking.
There are many tools for creating tagged links, but we recommend using the Google Campaign URL Builder, a free, convenient, and proven generator.
The Google builder consists of six fields – one for the URL link to the page you want and five for each of the UTM options. Mandatory for filling out are the first four lines – a link to the site, source, link location and the name of the strategy.
After launching the campaign, you can track traffic using Google Analytics *. Sign in to http://analytics.google.com, select Traffic Source – Campaigns – All Campaigns. Further move between the table parameters and see where the flow of visitors comes from. In order to use GA, you need to connect your site to Analytics.
Having received this data, you will be able to analyze the power of your strategies for social networks, marketing ideas, sales and promotions.
Importance of measuring traffic sources and setting UTM
- Data exploration
Only thanks to a reliable analytical platform you can get accurate information about the volume of keywords, traffic sources, the number of pages viewed by visitors, and countries that provide the highest level of traffic. All these aspects of the data are necessary when it comes to developing those types of SEO campaigns that really bring customers valuable experience in place and resonate with them.
Most importantly, analytics will help you better understand your customer journeys and determine your conversion rate to better optimize your processes. Thus, it is much easier to identify shortcomings that prevent visitors from taking the necessary actions on your customers’ sites.
Today, solid marketing is formed from preferences expressed by customers and effective data. Platforms such as Google Analytics provide an opportunity to provide businesses with a wealth of actionable data to analyze website performance and how it is used among visitors, to provide information, increase traffic and improve customer service.
The range of metrics available in Google Analytics is one of the best cost-effective resources available to website owners. Other platforms, such as SEMrush and Finteza, offer great intuitive data layers along with powerful analysis and simple visualizations.
- Customer understanding
Website traffic provides important information about what your visitors are doing on the site’s pages, as well as what they are looking for and what made them convert.
Knowing what people usually seek will pay dividends by helping your client’s business improve their products and services online. Using user information, you can create customer profiles for your potential customers and determine target people based on a number of indicators, such as geographical location, age, personal interests and estimated salary.
With the right analytic platform, you can locate the majority of online visitors. Location demographics provide site owners with a list of countries that attract more visitors. This is a useful feature that shows exactly where and whom you should focus on in your marketing campaigns to fully utilize the most susceptible traffic flows.
- Problem identification
Traffic tracking also gives an opportunity to identify potential errors on your web pages, such as duplicate URLs, invalid URLs, spam or duplicate tags. These problems can seriously affect the overall performance of the site and the amount of traffic.
Always keep an eye on if your traffic speed drops suddenly. The fall in traffic can be mainly due to the slower speed of the site, 404 errors and problems of the site hosting. If you understand these problems, this will help ensure a longer stay for visitors on your pages and maintain a high level of traffic.
Many analytic platforms may offer to send notifications to the control panel when there is a problem with the availability of your site. You can also receive them when lowering the conversion rate on your site.
- Performance monitoring
Similar Google Analytics, SEMrush and Finteza are useful when it comes to traffic to your site, as well as monitoring the performance of your pages. When these 2 metrics are combined, it helps to understand a lot.
Having an idea of what content will keep traffic on the pages of the website, you can understand what information visitors are looking for. If you understand that a particular traffic source likes content, such as gardening, you can optimize the content schedule to show more copies of articles of this kind. You should also ensure that your users are satisfied by adding relevant and simple internal links to your posts to help improve the performance of other pages and content on your site.
By learning about your less successful pages, you can also find out where you can improve. If you notice new trends, then quickly take measures to adapt them to weaker pages or change your content in accordance with the anticipated needs of your inbound traffic depending on where they come from. This may be due to the fact that your content is entitled in a misleading way, or that your text does not meet the expectations of visitors when clicking on a specific backlink.
- UTM tags Recognition
Entire marketing campaigns can be created based on the information provided by UTM tags, and management teams should pay attention to using these for everything published on the Internet to make sure that publications, likes and trackbacks bring new traffic to your client site.
UTM tags are especially effective to give website owners an idea of how their social campaigns go. Here you can see which form of social interaction attracts the most visitors, whether higher-quality images attract more interest or video.
Knowing what type of external activity attracts users, it will become much easier for you to optimize your social channels in order to attract a constant flow of visitors from each source.
UTM Work Tips
Continued use of tags can lead to a difficult understanding and parsing of previously generated URLs. We have prepared for you 3 tips that will help to keep under control links with tags and instantly understand what this or that tag is associated with.
- Think carefully about your encoding. Be consistent when naming the parameters that will display your company. Use similar design styles to understand what the tagged link is for. And remember that UTM parameters distinguish between “twitter” and “Twitter” and treat them as different values.
- Document your UTM codes. In whatever simple way you place UTM tags, each time creating a unique URL will take more effort. It is recommended to document your codes – create a spreadsheet in which you will indicate the abbreviation of holidays, promotions, advertising sites, and so on. It will be convenient for you and for your colleagues.
- Associate analytics with revenue. Visiting a page and clicking on links is an important, but not a key parameter. The importance of understanding is profit. Link UTM business intelligence to financial costs and revenue to determine the cost of publishing.
Traffic analytics is really effective information that will transparently demonstrate whether you are building the tactics for developing the site in the right way. When you have such data on which to base your decision, it’s much easier to take the next step to improve your marketing plan.