Datapoints and Parameters 2018-06-28T18:39:01+00:00

Datapoints’ are what we call the unique pieces of data that you would like to keep track of and compare in your analysis. For example,

  • Locale of your marketing efforts e.g. ( belgium, germany, france)
  • The Product you are promoting e.g. (shoes, dresses)

With UTM-Builder, datapoints can either be buttons, or be entered as free text. (With the traditional ways of building UTMs, free text was the only way!)

You should think carefully about which datapoints you would like to record.

Good datapoints:

  • Are well defined and well named
  • Help answer your business questions
  • Make sense across different marketing efforts (mail, adwords, organic posts). You don’t want data points that make sense in some of your UTMs and not others.
  • Are prepared to deal with “corner cases” – eg (a ‘city’ datapoint used for adwords might be ‘na’ for organic social posts) (I don’t really understand the example given here – Brendan)
  • Are prepared for scaling
  • Are not cramped

Two tips about datapoint formatting:

 

  • Each datapoint is separated from the next by an underscore ( “_” ) for this reason, underscore is a forbidden character elsewhere in the UTM builder.
  • If we do not need a datapoint in a certain circumstance, we should use ‘na’ instead of leaving it empty. This will make your data easier to use, see and analyse later on. Leaving datapoints blank can create problems in storing and retrieving your data, so it’s better to use ‘na’ then to leave a text box empty.

 

UTM-Builder and Analytics Services

Our basic price plan comes with the five Google Analytics (GA) standard UTM conversion parameters.

  • utm_source
  • utm_medium
  • utm_campaign
  • utm_term  
  • utm_content

These parameters are automatically picked up by GA and can easily be used to analyse traffic in the Google Analytics User Interface. This means that Google Analytics are designed to receive utm links that contain five pieces of information.  Other services (such as Snowplow Analytics) offer out-of-the-box support for these parameters. Because of their common usage, these five parameters are great ones to use. All the data you record in your utm should be ‘organised’ into these five categories.


What if I want to record more than five datapoints about my ad?

To do that, we can enter more than one datapoint per parameter:


This is a common practice in digital marketing. We call it concatination. With concatinated UTM, a common problem is that datapoints get entered in the wrong order. In a UTM like the above, someone might type in ‘france_facebook’ instead of ‘facebook_france’! This causes problems in retrieving and analysing the data. UTM-Builder lets you decide what order the datapoints will be written to the parameters:

Here’s a screenshot from the ‘edit’ section of the above profile. This means that the buttons will always write to the parameters in the same order. You can drag and drop the datapoints around to change the order they will fill out a parameter, or what parameters they fill. You can add and remove datapoints from a profile in the ‘edit’ section. Remember: if you get it right the first time, hopefully you won’t have to change it in future.


What if I want to use parameters other then these five?

With the Enterprise price plan you have full freedom over what url parameters to use. This is useful if you are using other analytics providers such as Adobe Analytics, Piwik, or your own in-house solution. For example, we could choose to have a parameter for each data point (eg example.com?utm_locale=de&utm_product=shoes…) or we could condense everything into one parameter (eg. example.com?utm_tracking=de_shoes_2017-01-01)

In an Enterprise Profile we can even choose what to name these UTMs and how many to have.

(NB. Ensure that the UTM convention “Custom UTMs” is enabled if you want to use UTMs other than just GA standard. Otherwise other UTMs will be filtered and hidden.)

Adding: Above and below the main UTM panel are two plus buttons. Clicking here lets us add new parameters.

Removing: Underneath each utm params name is a little trash can. A simple click and it’s gone.

Renaming: The little edit symbol underneath each UTM name will allow you to rename it.

Link UUID

Every time a link is built with our product, a unique id for that link is made. This is saved to our database. You can choose to pass this UUID along to your analytics service with the other parameters of your link.

This ID lets you cleanly pull the data points from our api, and to see additional data like

  • Who created the link
  • When was it created
  • What profile it belongs to

There are two ways in which to add this UUID:

  • Appending it to the url
  • Overwriting the other UTMs

Appending the url simply adds one more element to the url.  Overwriting, on the other hand, means that the end user will not see the marketing data points that you wish to measure. Instead. only they will only see the UUID. The other marketing data from your utm can then be retrieved using the utm-builder api. As a feature of an Enterprise Profile, you can also choose the name of the link’s UUID. For example, ‘_lican’ be changed to ‘cid’ or even ‘gclid’ (if this enabled your current analytics set up to better consume the link id data).

Conclusion

In this article, we’ve learned:

  • What datapoints are, and how they differ from parameters
  • How to edit which datapoints are written to which parameters
  • What link UUID is and how it is used

Confused about something? Have a question? Send us an email: [email protected]