15 March 2022 Analityka

The most common mistakes in UTM tagging. How does this affect analytics?

most common errors in utm tagging

The most common errors in UTM tagging are an issue that is often underestimated due to the lack of knowledge about the consequences of incorrect marking of activities. Missing data or incomplete information lead to wrong business decisions. It is worth making sure that every person having an impact on digital activities in the organization understands that by incorrectly marking activities, they will provide incorrect reports, which may lead to overestimation or underestimation of expenditure on marketing activities.

What is UTM?

UTM is an abbreviation of Urchin Tracking Module, it is a remnant of the Urchin Software company that Google acquired in 2005 and on the basis of which Google Analytics was created. These are parameters added to URLs designed to describe incoming traffic. These parameters are then read by Google Analytics to aggregate the data and visualize it in reports. Which emphasizes the importance of appropriate parameter marking of individual activities, because it has a direct impact on the quality of the reports we receive.

Mistake # 1: Lack of consistency

The more people conducting digital activities in the organization, the more necessary is the standardization of campaign tagging. Often, the same actions are named differently by different people, which causes inconsistencies in the reports. These may be typos, slight differences in spelling, but each such case, although it does not affect the reception of the website or the customer’s experience, causes problems in analysis and optimization. Moreover, parameters cannot be changed after the fact, so all report history may be wrong. Therefore, it is worth ensuring standardization from the very beginning

Mistake # 2: Mixing uppercase and lowercase letters

The UTM parameters are case-sensitive, so if you use the names “facebook” and “Facebook”, the data will be mapped to different lines.

Mistake # 3: Incorrect use of the symbols “&”, “?” in UTM tags

We always precede the addition of the first parameter with the “?” character, all subsequent parameters are preceded by the “&” character

Mistake # 4: Tagging internal links with UTM parameters

Using UTM parameters to mark clicks from sliders or banners on the website overwrites the session and parameters. This leads to a disturbance in the assessment of input sources because Google Analytics will assign the conversion to a slider or banner in the last click attribution. If you want to comprehensively assess the effectiveness of your own content and media, then in PragmaticBOX platform we make comprehensive analysis.

Mistake # 5: A required utm_source parameter is missing

It is a technologically required parameter for the tracking to work properly. If you only use the utm_medium or utm_campaign parameters, the parameters will not be registered correctly. It is also worth remembering that you should not use uppercase letters when describing a parameter, eg Utm_source.

Tool for verifying the correctness of tagging

In the PragmaticBOX platform, we provide a dashboard to monitor the correctness of tagging, which translates into the quality of reports. We monitor not only UTM parameters, but any parameters specific to individual analytical and advertising systems. It also helps in verifying real data sources with the problem of losing parameters in the case of multiple redirections. If you want to know more talk with our experts.

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