At first glance, UTM parameters might seem like a confusing mess, but they’re actually a lot simpler than you think. In this post, we’ll explain what UTM parameters (sometimes referred to as UTM Tags or UTM Codes) are and how you can use them to track your marketing performance.
UTM parameters are short text codes that you add to URLs (or links) to help you track the performance of a webpage or campaign. They give some context to where your website traffic is coming from so you can focus on what is working and ease up on what isn’t.
So what are the UTM parameters? In general, they are made up of three codes:
utm_source – This is the information about the source of the link. It could be from social media, or from an email marketing campaign for example.
utm_medium – This is the type of link being used. For example, if it’s an Instagram link, it would be “instagram.”
utm_campaign – This is the title given to your campaign.
Let’s dive into how these codes can help you track your marketing efforts.
What Are UTM Parameters?
UTM codes or tags are a string of letters and numbers that help you track your online marketing efforts. What makes them so great is that they can be added to any link or advertising campaign to measure the effectiveness of your ad or promotion.
Take a look in your email inbox or browser tabs right now, likely, you’ll see how other marketers are using UTM tags to track their own promotions.
(Warning, once you start to notice these, you can’t unsee them!)
You will probably see something like: www.theirwebsite.com/winter-blowout/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=year-end-sale
In this example, their UTM parameters are:
Campaign: Year End Sale
How Do UTM Parameters Work?
Brands across the world use UTM parameters to track their marketing performance.
Imagine you want to advertise your new line of shoes and launch a Facebook campaign. You can add UTM parameters to your link so that you can track everything from the number of clicks it received to the number of conversions that resulted from that ad.
UTM parameters work by placing them after any link or ad you want to measure the success of. For example, if I want to promote my blog post on digital marketing, I’d create a link like this:
That way, when someone clicked on my ad and then converted into a sale, I would know which Facebook ad was most successful for me. It’s super easy!
Track your marketing performance with your own UTM parameters!
You can create your own UTM parameters to track the success of your own marketing initiatives. To get started, you need to decide what type of campaign you want to track and come up with a title for your campaign.
Let’s say we wanted to track our company blog posts at “Blog Post: Tips for Growing Your Business”:
Create Your Own UTM Template
Let’s generate your own UTM!
You can create UTMs using the Google UTM generator, then paste the links into your social media posts or email campaigns.
- Head to the Google Analytics Campaign URL builder
- Enter the URL of the page you want to link to, then enter the values for the parameters you want to track.
Here is an example for this blog post:
- Scroll down to find the automatically generated campaign URL.
- Optional: Click Convert URL to Short Link, or click Copy URL to use a different URL shortener.
- Paste your link into your social media post and shorten it if you have not already done so.
Now that you know how to use UTM parameters, you can track your site’s marketing performance. You can also use them to see which marketing campaigns, ads, or outreach platforms are driving the most traffic to your site.
So what are you waiting for? Get started today by creating your own UTM codes so you can track the success of your digital marketing.