How Online Marketing Tracking Gets You More Sales

tire tracks in the snow image

Image: stellablu

John Wanamker once said, “Half my advertising is wasted, I just don’t know which half.”

Actually, there is a way to tell where your sales are coming from.

Set up online marketing tracking systems on your site

If you don’t have Google Analytics installed on your site, go do it now.  You set up a Google account, add some code to your site, and you’re good to go.  This will tell you where your clicks and visits are coming from. And here’s a Google Analytics tutorial with tips on what to look for.

Track marketing campaign clicks and ads

If you run a print ad, use a unique URL (such as  Keep this fairly short and easy to remember.  The harder it is to type, the less likely it is that people will do it.

Do the same for a direct mail or postcard marketing campaign.  Add a unique URL or a keycode (a series of numbers or letters, like LOGO1, for the first logo offer mailing) that identifies which mailing it is or which list you used.  You can also add tracking links to your ebooks.

Update 2016: Google now lets you track clicks by adding a bit of extra code to your analytics tracking information.  That means it’s easier to see every click on every link, without having to mark each one individually.  More details  are here.

Offer a bonus

Add an incentive to go to the landing page.   Offer an additional discount or bonus for using the code. Put a box to your home page that says, see us in ______ magazine?  Enter your code here.  The code would be the unique URL name, which sends them to the landing page.

Welcome new visitors

If you’re driving visitors from another web site, welcome visitors from XYZ blog. right on top. For banners, or AdWords campaigns, send people to a landing page set up for that particular campaign.

Google can track all of this, as well as the conversions (sales/sign-ups) for each one. Once you know where your sales are coming from, you can shift more time (and money) to what works. Then, do a happy dance, cause you know more than John Wanamaker ever could.

Got any other ideas or tips for tracking?  Anything I missed?  Share in the comments.