Understanding the UTM Parameters Best Practices for Website Success

by Evans Walsh May 2, 2019

Measuring the return on investment of digital marketing campaigns is the biggest challenge for many SEOs and social media marketers. However, the good news now is that there is no need to be in the dark when it comes to availing the key indicators of marketing ROI as leads, website traffic, and conversion with the help of thee little codes are known as UTM parameters. You don’t have to be a programmer to make it work for your purpose.


Guidance for using UTM parameters


In fact, there are five primary UTM parameters to consider:


  1. Campaign source


It is the referrer destination from which you get traffic. One can consider it as the last place from where the user clicks to reach to the destination page, i.e., Facebook, Twitter, Google, blog, or a newsletter.


  1. Campaign medium


It is the marketing medium through which the traffic has come from. You can consider the medium as CPC, social, organic, display, banner, email, etc.


  1. Campaign name


The campaign name as set by the marketer like ‘summer_sale, winter_offer, 20%-coupon, etc.


  1. Campaign term


This is mostly used to spot the paid keywords. It cannot be used to track the CPC traffic or so.


  1. Campaign content


This can be set as anything to differentiate the nature of the content, e.g. video or image, etc., i.e., creative_a or creative_b.


UTM parameters are case sensitive


While preparing UTM parameters with UTM builder, one should know that these are case sensitive. If you have to name a campaign ‘Track”, then you have to create UTM code to track the same campaign by calling it as ‘track,” and you will end up with sets of tracked parameters.




Consistency is the key to do accurate UTM code tracking, so always ensure that you choose the apt and consistent naming conventions. If you are trying to track the success of your display ads online and want to know which size of it is performing better, then you decide your medium as display or banner at the first point and then stick the same convention consistently.


Using underscores and not spaces


Another ideal tip about UTM parameters is the use of underscores than putting spaces, simply because of the fact that it will be replaced with % symbol if you put spaces. This may be very confusing while you attend to it later if you want a real % sign to be put in your track code.


You may use UTM parameters in a real variety of innovative ways, let’s explore a few:


  • Apart from getting a general overview of the traffic, you can use the UTM parameters to identify which links are most effective and which calls to action (CTA’s) work the best.


  • You may also use UTM parameters to compare the newsletters. Identify the most effective newsletters and those which require improvement.


  • You may know that the traffic is coming from your product pages but unsure which call to action drives in more results, UTM parameters help.


One final thing to conclude that URLs with UTM parameters may look very long and even ugly. So, the best practice is to use a link shortness service like goo.gl or bit.ly, which will help you to trim the URL down and make it look so clean.


Evans Walsh
Evans Walsh is a freelance content writer. He has written many good and informative articles on different categories such as technology, health, fashion, beauty, education, career, travel, etc. He is very responsible for his job. He loves to share his knowledge and experience with his friends and colleagues.