What Are UTMs?
Adding UTMs is a feature of the Business and Agency plans, as well as custom plans with the Intermediate Analytics add-on.
UTM parameters are “tags” that are added to the end of a URL, to help you track the effectiveness of a post published to your social media accounts.
If you have hundreds, or even thousands, of visitors to your website per month, it’s great to discover where your traffic is coming from, especially if the source is the great content you're posting to your social media via SmarterQueue. 💪
In This Article
- What Are UTMs?
- How To Enable UTM Parameters In SmarterQueue
- How To Edit UTM Settings For Individual Posts
- How To Use UTMs With Evergreen
- How To Find Your Data In Google Analytics
- How To Configure Google Analytics To Work With Your UTMs
What Are UTMs?
UTM (Urchin Tracking Module) parameters are “tags” of code that are added to the end of a URL. Google Analytics uses UTMs to see how visitors found your website.
For example, if you share a link to your website on your Facebook page called 'Smart Co', and from your 'Blog Posts' Category, Google Analytics will show that page and Category as UTM labels for all visitors who clicked on that link.
If you add UTM parameters as well as Bitly click-tracking, we will also add an additional query parameter to the link, “utm_sq”.
This makes sure that every Bitlink you create is unique. Otherwise, every time you share a link in a new post, it would re-use the same Bitlink, and all posts would report the same click statistics (so you wouldn’t know how many clicks came from each post).
How To Enable UTM Parameters In SmarterQueue
By default, SmarterQueue will add UTM parameters to your links.
The social network type, Profile name, and Category name are added as Google Analytics UTM parameters to all links that you share.
To change this setting for your SmarterQueue account...
- Open 'Setting' via the cog icon ⚙️ (top right of page)
- Choose 'Settings' > 'Link Tracking'
- Scroll down to the section labelled 'Campaign Tracking' (Google Analytics UTM)
- Click 'Yes'
When enabled, the following dynamic UTM parameters will be automatically added to the end of every link that you share:
- Campaign Source: _NETWORK_ (This is the social network your post was shared on)
- Campaign Medium: social
- Campaign Name: _ACCOUNT_ (The name of your profile)
- Campaign Content: _CATEGORY_ (The name of your post category)
These can be combined – e.g. _ACCOUNT_ _NETWORK_ will result in “mytwitterhandle Twitter”.
💡 We recommend keeping Campaign Medium set to ‘social’, as this helps Google Analytics detect social traffic
How To Edit UTM Settings For Individual Posts
You can also change the UTM parameters for individual posts...
- In the Post Editor, click 'Link Settings'
- Here, you can turn off UTMs for a specific post, and change any of the default settings.
How To Use UTMs With Evergreen
UTM parameters work perfectly with Evergreen posts - each time a post is re-shared and generates additional traffic for your website, your Google Analytics will show your post as the source.
That said, keep in mind that after being shared, Evergreen posts are re-added to the Queue just the way they are, with the exact same settings made when the post was created.
If you make changes to the general UTM parameter settings, your Evergreen posts will continue to have the old UTM settings applied to them.
You'll need to run through and edit each of those so that further cycles will align to the new UTM settings...
- Navigate to the post you’d like to edit inside your Queue, and click the ‘Pencil’ icon to edit the post
- This will open the Post Editor, where you can then remove the link, then re add it. To do so, click the 'Remove Link' button, and type or paste the new link into the post text.
Double-check the 'Link Settings' on the right side of the 'Post Editor' to ensure the right settings are in place for UTMs.
How To Find Your Data In Google Analytics
The UTM parameters that have been set will then appear in Google Analytics as the links direct traffic to the particular website.
This tracking can be found in the Acquisitions section of Google Analytics.
You may need to configure Google Analytics to work with your UTMs.
Under Acquisitions, you’ll see an option for Campaigns and then All Campaigns.
This is where you can track the different campaigns that have been created and the traffic that has been generated.
You’ll see a list of all the campaigns you’ve been tracking and you can click on each to view the full details.
You can filter for different Campaigns, Sources, and Mediums, which have been added to the URLs.
How To Configure Google Analytics To Work With Your UTMs
There are two things you should do in Google Analytics to ensure your reports are meaningful:
1. Make sure to ignore the “utm_sq” parameter that is added to Bitlinks.
If you have created several posts that link to a URL on your website (e.g. http://website.com/blog-post), and added Bitly click tracking for each post, SmarterQueue will generate a unique Bitlink for each post, and the destination of each Bitlink will be slightly different, because a different “utm_sq” parameter is added for each post.
When viewing all of your visited pages in Google Analytics, it may show a separate row for each unique URL, due to the different parameter added for each separate post:
http://website.com/blog-post?utm_sq=123 had 120 visitors
http://website.com/blog-post?utm_sq=456 had 95 visitors
http://website.com/blog-post?utm_sq=789 had 230 visitors
If you wish to group those separate rows into one row, so that you can measure all visitors to your base URL (http://website.com/blog-post), regardless of which unique post they came from, you can add a filter to tell Google Analytics to ignore the “utm_sq” query parameter:
2. Make sure all of your UTM parameters are lowercase
Since March 25th, 2018, SmarterQueue creates all UTM parameters in lowercase (e.g. ?utm_source=myfacebookpage).
Any links created before this date may still have UTM parameters with uppercase letters (e.g. ?utm_campaign=MyFacebookPage).
Google Analytics may report these as separate UTM parameters, which makes it harder to group all of your traffic sources. This may mean you have two rows in your UTM reports, one-row showing traffic from “myfacebookpage”, and another row showing traffic from “MyFacebookPage”.
To make Google treat both variants as the same source, you can apply a filter that makes all UTM parameters lowercase.
Note: It may not be a good idea to add UTM parameters to links that you don’t own (i.e. you can’t view the Google Analytics for that domain). Occasionally, websites are not configured correctly to handle UTM parameters, so by adding them, you may actually break the link that you’re trying to share!
SmarterQueue provides analytics for all your posts, segmented by profile and category, so even if you share links to other people’s websites, you can see which category or profile got the most engagement.