Understanding the essentials of UTM marking in ATS

Through our SEA Agency Optimize 360

The world of digital marketing is full of technical terms and acronyms that can sometimes seem complex.

One of these terms is UTM tagging, an essential element to consider when working with paid advertising campaigns such as Search Engine Advertising (SEA).

In this article, we'll look at what UTM tagging is, how it works and how you can use it to improve your marketing campaigns. digital marketing.


Definition of UTM beacons

UTM is the abbreviation for Urchin Tracking Modulea URL parameter format originally developed by Urchin Software Corporation before being acquired by Google in 2005.

UTM tags are a series of parameters found in the URL which allow marketing tools to analyse the paths taken by Internet users when they click on a link to your site. website.

In short, they provide valuable information about the source of traffic to your online content, which is very useful for optimising your marketing campaigns.

How do UTM beacons work?

UTM tags are added at the end of the destination URL and generally comprise five parameters:

  1. utm_source This is the source of traffic, such as a search engine, a website or a web site. newsletter or a partner website.
  2. utm_medium This parameter indicates the type of advertising medium used to distribute your content. In the case of an SEA campaign, this could be set to " cpc "(cost per click) or "display".
  3. utm_campaign The name of the marketing campaign you wish to track.
  4. utm_term (optional): You can use this parameter to track the keywords that led users to click on your ad.
  5. utm_content (optional): This is an additional identifier for ads with several content variants. This can help identify which version of the ad has generated the most traffic and/or the most impressions. conversions.

To illustrate this, here is an example of a URL with UTM tags:

https://www.votredomaine.com/produits/nouveaux ?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=lancement_produit&utm_term=chaussures_hommes&utm_content=version_A

In this example, we can see that the traffic to this URL comes from a Google Ads (source=google), in cost per click (medium=cpc), as part of a campaign entitled "product_launch".

The other parameters also give us information about the associated keywords (term=men's_shoes) and the specific version of the advert (content=version_A).

Rules for using UTM beacons

There are a few general rules to follow when using UTM tags to help you organise and analyse your marketing data effectively:

  • Use a consistent format. To make your data easier to read and process, it is essential that UTM parameter values are written consistently throughout your campaign. For example, avoid using upper case and lower case letters to designate the same thing.

  • Avoid using sensitive or personal information. In accordance with the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), it is important not to include information that can directly or indirectly identify a person in the UTM parameters.

  • Limit yourself to the five main parameters. Although it may be tempting to include additional parameters to obtain even more information, this can unnecessarily complicate the analysis of your data and make your URL longer and less attractive to users.

  • Regularly measure the impact of your UTM tags on your marketing performance. UTM tags are only useful if they provide actionable information that helps to improve your marketing efforts. It is therefore crucial to monitor their results and take corrective action if necessary.

Tools for generating and analysing UTM tags

Fortunately, there are several online tools that can help you create and analyse UTM tags:

Google URL Builder

One of the most popular tools for creating UTM tags is the Google URL Builder. This free generator from Google Analytics allows you to quickly enter the desired parameter values for each campaign and automatically generates a complete URL with the UTM tags added.

Other custom URL generators

There are also other free and paid solutions for generating custom URLs with UTM tags. These include UTM.io, Rebrandly URL Shortener and Terminus App. Each of these tools offers a number of additional features, such as integration with marketing platforms, redirect management and the ability to centrally track and analyse your URLs generated with UTM tags.

Data analysis and performance monitoring

To exploit the full potential of UTM tags, you should use a web analytics tool such as Google Analytics to examine the traffic data associated with your SEA' campaigns.

Using such a tool, you can view and compare the performance of different marketing channels, advertising media and content variants. This allows you to identify the elements that work best and those that need to be optimised to improve your results.

In a nutshell

UTM tags are a valuable way of obtaining detailed information on the performance of your SEA campaigns and other marketing initiatives.

By understanding how these tags work and using best practice when implementing them, you can optimise your digital marketing efforts and maximise your return on investment.

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