Tracking Social Media Marketing Efforts in Google Analytics

Lauren Owens - February 9, 2015

One of the issues that social media marketers have is showing how their efforts contribute to the bottom line. Luckily, there is an easy way to tell how your overall social media marketing efforts contribute to conversions by using Google Analytics.

To see this first hand, navigate to the Acquisition section within Google Analytics and then select the Social dropdown. Then, click on Conversions:


From there, you will be able to see which networks contributed to your overall conversions.


But that doesn’t tell the whole story. To get more of the story, click on Assisted Vs. Last Action Analysis and you will see how much of the total conversions were “assists” vs. “last clicks.”


As you can see in the example above, this user had 167 assisted conversions, but only 27 last click or direct conversions. This doesn’t mean social isn’t working, it just means that social wasn’t the only contributing factor to the conversion. This is a very good thing, as it means this user’s overall marketing efforts are working together to contribute to the bottom line.

More About Multi-Channel Attribution

Think of digital marketing as a stew. You’ve got social media marketing, paid search, organic search, and other advertising and content marketing efforts. If you’re doing it right, your ideal audience is likely seeing your marketing message everywhere. And, they’re often coming to your site more than once. Maybe they discover your site by clicking through an advertisement. Then they follow you on social media, then a week later, they click on one of your social media posts… then, they finally convert. In this example, social media gets the “win” for this conversion, but that doesn’t tell the entire story, which is why it’s important to see the Assisted Vs. Last Action view.

Tagging Your Links – Adding UTM Parameters for Extra Trackability

In order for this sort of tracking magic to work, you’ve got to properly tag your links by adding UTM parameters. By doing this, you will be able to see not only the source of your traffic, but what campaign the traffic was associated with, if you choose to add this information.

To do this, add ?utm_source= to your links and then the source, for example, Facebook. To add any additional information, add ?utm_campaign, ?utm_medium, etc.

At the end of the day, your link might look like:

If that’s too much for you to remember, that’s OK. You can bookmark our link tracking tool and use it any time you want to add tracking parameters to your links.

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