For marketing people, UTM stands for Urchin Tracking Module. And while it sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, it’s actually an easy way to keep track of how effective your marketing efforts are.
A UTM link is a regular website link with a bit of extra code – called UTM parameters – added on. This code tells your website analytics software where the traffic is coming from and what campaign it's connected to.
For example, let’s say you’re sending an email to your customers. Rather than putting a simple link in your newsletter, add a UTM link. This creates a specific, trackable link, so that you can see how many visitors you’ve had specifically from that one email, versus how many have just happened to find you.
In our UTM code example above, the UTM parameters are everything after the question mark. The "utm_source=instagram” part tells your analytics software the traffic is coming from your Instagram account. The "utm_medium=social" part tells it the channel is social media, and the "utm_campaign=promo" part tells it that it's associated with your ‘Promo 2023’ marketing campaign.
Where are the best places to use UTM link tracking?
The short answer? Anywhere you're sharing a link promoting your website, such as:
Whether you're promoting a new product or sharing a blog post, a UTM link tracks your social media traffic. You can see which platforms are driving the most traffic to your website and adjust your strategy to match. It’s also a good idea to include UTM links in your ‘Link in Bio’ on various social media.
If you're sending out regular email newsletters, use UTM link tracking in your call-to-action buttons to reveal which ones are attracting people to your website – and which aren’t.
When paying for ads, we all want the best returns. A UTM link will allow you to track exactly where your clicks, conversions and revenue are coming from. This way, you can see where to spend more time and money.
How do I create and track my UTM links?
There are a variety of free and paid-for analytic tools to help you. Some of the most well-known include UTM tracking Google Analytics, Bitly, and Hootsuite.
Here's how it works:
How to create UTM links
Before you can track your UTM link, you need to create it. Why not download this UTM link builder below and have a go? Just enter the campaign name, source, and medium to generate your unique link. It’s important to be as specific as possible when describing your campaign name. For example, name it ‘instagram-story-1-january-2023’ rather than ‘instagram-2023’. This will help you identify exactly which post the traffic came from.
How to use UTM links
Start using your link in your marketing campaigns. Make sure you use it consistently across all platforms, so you can accurately track your traffic and engagement.
Track your UTM link
Use your chosen analytic tool for insights like the number of clicks on a link, where your traffic is coming from, and how much revenue is rolling in.
Analyse your results
Once you've tracked your UTM link over time, analyse the results. Look for patterns and trends in your traffic and engagement and use that information to make smarter decisions about your marketing strategy.
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