Tracking Email Marketing in Google Analytics

Your email broadcasting system should be able to provide you with a range of performance metrics including successful receipts, open rates and click through rates. However, when the recipient clicks through to your website you’ll need to check your analytics tool. This will show more detailed information about their on-site behaviour to help you refine future email marketing campaigns.

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Google Analytics can provide a wealth of useful information about your email recipient behaviour once they arrive on your website. In order to do that you will need to add a short string of tracking code after the URLs in your email content. This will allow Google Analytics to recognise an email user. Then add an Advanced Segments for email and you will be able to filter out all non email traffic.

UTM Tracking Parameters

In order for Google Analytics to track your email traffic and allow you to identify which audience segment or which broadcast generated that traffic you will need to add a short string of code to the end of your website URL. The string begins with a question mark then the letters UTM followed by an underscore.

There are a number of parameters that need to be defined and added to the string. We would typically use three UTM tracking parameters in an email marketing campaign:

  • utm_medium – add ’email’ as the medium and this will identify your click to the email advanced segment
  • utm_campaign – add the name of your campaign (e.g. ‘summersale’) so you can isolate this campaign from others to determine how successful it was
  • utm_source – we tend to use this parameter to detail audience segment references to measure segment effectiveness (e.g. march_signup) or to differentiate between text or image links

Building a Campaign URL

Creating a set of tracking parameters for your campaign is easy thanks to the free Google Campaign URL Builder tool. This allows you to input the parameters above and it generates the code for you. Visit https://ga-dev-tools.appspot.com/campaign-url-builder/ and follow the instructions to create your custom URL.

Email Campaign Data in Google Analytics

In the report you want to review (such as Behaviour > Site Content > Pages) open the ‘Users’ or ‘Add Segment’ if email doesn’t already exist in the list. First check there isn’t already an ‘Email’ segment and if not click on New Segment. This will by default ask you to enter demographic detail but click the ‘Traffic Source’ tab. You will now see the familiar parameters explained above including Campaign, Medium and Source.

The ‘All Users’ segment is by default selected so un-check that and click Apply to view only your email segment. Now all reports you view just relate to the Email audience. All report you view now are just from your email audience!