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Tracking an Email Campaign in Google Analytics

Anna Lewis

by Anna Lewis on 12th July 2011

EmailWhen looking at the Traffic Report in Google Analytics once an email campaign has been sent it can be hard to get a good understanding of how much traffic came to the site and how these visitors interacted and converted.

Unfortunately, Google can’t track this automatically for you as there are so many email providers but luckily it’s nice and easy to implement tracking yourself so that you can see exactly how many visits were generated from each email campaign and how these visitors interacted with your site.

What you need to do is add a string of tracking code to each link to your website within your email, but don’t worry, this code is used in the link reference rather than being visible to the users. To generate the tracking code use this Campaign URL Builder from Google.

Firstly, enter the URL you want to track:

Secondly, choose how you want to see the data reported in Analytics by specifying the Campaign Source, Medium and Name:

The Campaign Medium is the over arching category and includes organic, cpc and referral as standard so I would recommend using ‘email’ for your email campaign.

Source is the next level down and can be more specific, here I would recommend using something like ‘summer newsletter’ or ‘red widget promotion’.

The Name can be as specific as you like, you could use a top level categorisation or you might even want to go as far as labelling each link differently, ie ‘header offer’, ‘specific blog post’ or ‘job ad 1′.

You can also use the extra fields depending on how much you want to track. I’d recommend having a look in Google Analytics and working out what kind of information you want to appear in each report, this will help you see what sort of label would work best for each area.


Image Source

Email Envelope via BigStock

Anna Lewis

Anna Lewis

Our resident analytics specialist is Anna Lewis. Anna is unbelievably attuned to anything analytical and can fill you in on all the latest news, tips and advice to get ahead in this evolving market.

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  • Ross Chapman 29th May 2012

    Great tips – will try in my next campaign.

    Would you recommend a particular services – mailchimp / campaign monitor or other?

    I liked the look of the May Koozmail!

    Thanks Ross

    Reply to this comment

    • Dean Marsden

      Dean 30th May 2012

      Hi Ross,

      I’ve used ConstantContact and dotMailer. Mailchimp is a popular choice and Campaign Monitor looks very nice to use.

      So any of those would do the job well, it just comes down to your costs and whether you want to send regular emails or just one off’s. For example, ConstantContact has a fixed monthly fee for sending unlimited emails but with limited contacts, whereas Campaign monitor offers pay as you go pricing which may be more suitable for one-off emails.

      Another service to consider is a low cost cloud based solution such as Sendgrid.

      Hope this helps

      Reply to this comment

      • Ross Chapman 30th May 2012

        Thanks Dean – very useful.


  • Anna Lewis

    Anna Lewis 30th May 2012

    Hi Ross, thanks for your comment, glad you found the tips useful and liked this month’s Koozmail!

    I’m going to leave your question about email services to my colleague, as I mainly deal with the tracking of them.


    Reply to this comment

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