Track Link Activity via Google Analytics and HootSuite (Free!)

We weren’t using HootSuite yet when they first came out with Google Analytics integration so when I tried it out a couple months back, it didn’t make sense to me to use it.

  1. It’s not free. You’ll have to use your HootSuite report points for this. And one report starts at $50. If I’m not mistaken, you get 50 points for $50. Google analytics reports from HootSuite start at $10. And if you have more than one account, that quickly racks up. It’s a rip-off especially for small companies like us.
  2.  If you have a lot of traffic, the tweets to web conversion does not make sense. Especially if Twitter doesn’t bring you at least 10% of your total traffic. It’s just going to look like a flat line with dots against your web traffic graph.
  3. You can just use HootSuite’s Custom URL Parameters!

If you aren’t already using this, HootSuite actually has a blog post on this one. I’m just going to show you how it will look like on your GA dashboard.

Step 1

Change your Custom URL Parameters:

When I first tried this out, I couldn’t find the drop down and that’s because I didn’t click on the link bar.

Click on the link bar and you’ll see that gear. Click on it and the custom URL parameter settings will pop up.

The source and medium labels are pretty straightforward, it’s the Campaign name that you need to be specific with.

Here I used ‘Peanut’s Twitter Account’ because well, this is my Twitter Account.

Step 2

Go to Google Analytics and under Traffic Sources, you’ll see it neatly labeled! (There’s a waiting period before Step 1 and Step 2, give it a day before they show up on your GA account.)

Now I know just how many visits Twitter gave me based on my links!

I can also check under Campaigns and see my Twitter account in there:

Wow I brought in more than 5M visits! That’s amazing… editing skills.

Using HootSuite’s Custom URL Parameters, I don’t need to pay $50.

Because that’s ridiculous.

It’s free, I just need to set it up once and you can use it on multiple Twitter users! By that I mean, those Twitter accounts that need to be managed by different people.

You’ll be able to measure how much visit each HS account has brought in and optimize based on the data that you have.

And all it takes is just 5 minutes (or even less) for each of your HootSuite members.

5 minutes or $50?

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