Everyone tells you to measure your success whether you’re running a PPC campaign or launching a new content marketing strategy. Yes, measuring is good, but it isn’t always black and white. For instance, if you launch a Twitter campaign and see a spike in web traffic, how do you know with certainty that it was your tweets that led people to your site?

Well, with UTM codes, you can have this information and prove your worthiness. UTM codes are snippets that are added to the end of URLs. They are specifically designed to track the success of your content on the Internet, and they won’t affect anything else on the page. By adding these codes to the end of a URL, Google Analytics knows that someone arrived to your page through a certain marketing channel, such as Twitter, Facebook or a guest post, just to name a few.

Here are five things that UTM codes can track.

  • Campaign (utm_campaign): Groups all content from one campaign into analytics. This makes it possible to track the success of custom campaigns.

  • Source (utm_source): Tells you which websites are sending you traffic.

  • Medium (utm_medium): The type of marketing medium that a link is featured in.

  • Content (utm_content): Used to track the various types of content that directs to the same URL from the same campaign, source and medium codes.

  • Term (utm_term): Used to identify keywords that you’ve paid for in a PPC ad campaign.

UTM codes are quite ingenious when you think about it, especially because you can use any combination of codes. This way, you can be very specific about what you track, or you can focus on the bare minimum. Marketers use UTM codes to track things like:

  • Custom marketing campaigns

  • Content posted on social media channels

  • Guest posting referral traffic

  • Same pieces of content across multiple marketing channels

  • Internal links in a blog post

The best way to get started using UTM codes is by using the Google Analytics URL Builder. You can then generate a URL and track specific metrics. To view the campaigns, visit your website profile, click on Acquisition > Campaigns. You can then see an overview of the various campaigns and learn more about how people are getting to your site.