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Using Tracking Parameters
Posted 27 August 2003 - 04:51 PM
We've just purchased ClickTracks and are amazed by it's results. It nicely complements WebTrends, which we've had for many years. ClickTracks is giving us giving us an amazing amount of data regarding our web visitor behavior, which is fueling a long (painfully long. my post just took 10 minutes longer because I looked at the entire list of smilies) overdue website re-design.
We've also long talked about trying to track user paths through our site, especially where a sale is involved. ClickTracks will help a long ways towards that. For starters, we tried comparing searches from PPC vs. traditional using ClickTracks, but our results were wrong. This is because ClickTracks requires a tracking parameter behind the URL (for example: http://www.rockware....ource=overture). Apparently, ClickTracks only cares that there is a question mark, the actual parameter name and value don't matter.
This leads to my question- can anyone point me to a good resource on using tracking parameters, or share some of their experience? I'm wondering if there's any sense in creating parameters of the form:
or whether just to keep it simple:
Hope that isn't too broad....
Posted 27 August 2003 - 05:36 PM
I'm not familiar with how to best use tracking URLs with ClickTracks, however, I bet if you email them, they will help you out. I understand that their customer service is awesome!
I am familiar with using tracking URLs with ConversionRuler, however. You may be able to apply some of what I learned with that, towards your ClickTracks URLs. Here's part one of my ConversionRuler Review, with part 2 linked at the end.
Posted 03 September 2003 - 11:45 AM
I am very jealous!! We too have click tracks but have recently upgraded our webtrends and now the results are completely different from each other!!
We are tearing our hair out hear trying to work out why the results are coming back so different and how we are going to track our campaigns accurately.
Not to mention getting webtrends to pick up and report path analysis using the tracking pages we have set up for our ppc campaigns!!
Ach I am sure it will all become clear and start working properly soon............ won't it?
Ooops sorry about the rant
Posted 03 September 2003 - 04:49 PM
Remember that Click Tracks gets it information from from log access files and .csv files if you are running PPC campaigns. There are no inherent cookies involved as with Conversion Ruler. (though I do believe that Click Tracks can follow cookies)
As such, Click Tracks absolutely needs unique identifiers for you to use it effectively in your PPC campaigns. As with Tom's example: http://www.rockware....keyword=geology
So for each PPC campaign, Banner advertising campaign etc, you need to put in a unique identifer starting with "?" after your landing page URL.
One other thing to add, is that if your shopping cart creates dynamic pages (such as Miva),
Click Track Analyzer will not be able to track groups through the check out stage or even know if they truly bought a product. Why? At least with Miva, it strips out the customer's "entry" identifyers and gives them a completely different "shoping cart" identifyer along with an individual customer ID. This means I can't track a group who for instance who have been to section A of my site and then have bought product. It's like they have completely disappeared into a Miva alternate reality. Again, all due to what your web logs actually record.
So what to do? You need to buy Click Track Analyzer PRO (more expensive) which in our case has a Miva module provided that we put on our server and can then help us track through the process.
Posted 03 September 2003 - 06:22 PM
We too have click tracks but have recently upgraded our webtrends and now the results are completely different from each other!!
Don't worry too much about numbers not shaking out when comparing ClickTracks and Webtrends. It's normal. Both stats programs, and many others, use different rules to filter actual users from bots and automated page requests. Some rules are more stringent, some are less stringent, depending upon the program being used.
Clicktracks claims to have the "latest and greatest" filters, and they look to be backing it up. Until Webtrends released Log Analyzer 7 they weren't reporting Googlebot in the spider activity. So, maybe they have gotten better in their latest product, but I still see some huge variances, depending on the website, it seems.
As long as you come up with one set of numbers to track and measure the trends, it is more important that having the exact numbers (unless you are looking at some advertising charges). Trending the information with consistent numbers will give you the best indicators of success.
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