How to Track Email Campaigns with Google Analytics

In this lesson, we’ll look at how to track your email campaigns in Google Analytics, why this is important, when to do it and how to set it up.

Are you ready? Let’s get started then…

Why is it important to track campaigns?

We’ve covered what you should measure on your email campaigns, but until now, we’ve focused on the ESP side. While you can see open rates and clicks on the ESP reporting, you don’t know what the impact was once the subscriber arrived to your site.

Sure, it’s important to know how many people clicked through, but Google Analytics takes care of the other side of things. For example:

  • How much time are your subscribers spending on the site
  • How many pages they visited
  • Did they bounce?
  • And even how many visitors coming from your campaign ended up making a purchase

When should you use use custom URLs?

In reality, you should use a custom URL every time you are trying to drive traffic to your site from different sources.

Let’s say you are simply promoting a blog post you just published, chances are you are going to post it on your Facebook page, you’re going to send a tweet, and post it on other places like LinkedIn, Google+ and more.

If you’re like the rest on the human beings in this planet, you’ll use a short URL like Bit.ly, which can track clicks from some sources, mostly from Twitter, but will not give you a reliable breakdown. But most importantly, it will not tell you what happened on your site.

Bit.ly report

Instead, you should use a custom URL for each one of these sources, that way you’ll know which traffic is giving you better results. It’s not uncommon to see the difference in quality from one source to another. In my case, for example, traffic coming from Facebook spend more time on the site, visit more pages, has fewer bounces and converts higher than the traffic from Twitter.

Custom URLs can also be used on ad banners, Hello bars, Google adwords, Facebook ads, etc.

You should also do the same with your email campaigns.

In this image, you can see the campaigns ran for one of the launches of my Facebook ads course. The sources tracked include email, sidebar ad, hello bar, the courses page on my site, etc.

Campaign tracking

Inside your campaign

You can also use more than one custom URL inside a campaign. For example:

  • Track clicks from your CTA button and separately from your image
  • When you use multiple links pointing to the same destination in a campaign and you want to know if people are clicking on link 1, 2 or 3

Sequence

If you are sending an autoresponder sequence, make sure you use a custom URL for each email, that way you know which ones are generating a higher response and which ones are not working.

How to create a custom URL

In this video, I’ll show you how to create a custom URL and how to insert it in your campaign.

Link to Google URL Builder.

Where to find your campaigns in Google Analytics

Let’s see where to find the campaign tracking inside Google Analytics.

Homework

Next time you are promoting something, whether it’s a blog post or a product launch…

  • Create one custom URL for each source (Facebook, Twitter, and of course your email campaign)
  • Test different URLs within your campaign to know know where people are clicking
  • Once your promotion is running, observe the results in Google Analytics “Campaigns”