Do you know how much traffic your guest posts are delivering back to your website or blog? Or are you simply shooting in the dark and hoping for the best outcome? Or is it that your time consuming and mind hurting efforts are going wasted?
The Google URL Builder tool helps you eliminate the guessing game and pinpoint exactly how much benefit each of your link building campaigns is producing. Let’s first discuss why this is critical and then how you can take advantage of the Google URL Builder tool.
As busy individuals, we need to know how and where to spend our time with regard to guest posting to maximize the benefit we are seeking. There is no doubt that submitting a guest post is one of the highest impact activities you can engage in to deliver both quality back links as well as relevant and targeted traffic to your blog or website.
But what if you have limited time and are torn between multiple blogs on which to guest post? Where would you post? What kind of topics should you focus on to get the most bang for your time investment?
You not only need to know which web properties are bringing back the most traffic to you, but also the type of posts that are compelling readers to visit your blog or website. I’m sure I don’t need to get into the reasons why knowing this information is critical.
The Google URL Builder can help equip you with that intelligence, or knowledge that normally wins half the battle; with the other half being execution. The Google Link Builder allows you to create customized tracking links or campaign tracking links that identify not only the web property where you submit a link to, but also the specific medium within which you have the link embedded.
For example, if you submit guest post A to website X and another guest post B to the same website X, the Google URL Builder tool assists you in creating unique links for the two scenarios so that you can track the effectiveness of each guest post within the same web property. Similarly, the Google URL Builder can be used to track multiple guest posts on multiple web properties.
There are often two ways to do most things, the easy way and the hard way. You can guess which way I favor (obviously not compromising on the quality and integrity of the process). The Google URL Builder tool makes creating campaign tracking links a piece of cake. Have a look at how the tool looks:
As with most things Google, the Google Link Builder is quite intuitive. You first need to enter your own URL, followed by three other attributes that are mandatory, and two more if you feel ambitious that day.
Basically, Google wants you to identify the source of your campaign or the web property, the medium such as whether it is a banner ad or an email message, as well as a campaign name for identification purposes. Once you fill this information out, the Google URL Builder will generate a campaign tracking link unique to that campaign. You can use this link to track user / visitor volume and behavior.
Note: This process will only work if you already have the Google Analytics code installed on the webpage you are driving traffic to. If you are reading this post, I am assuming you already have Google Analytics installed.
It’s really that easy. The hard way is to type the campaign tracking URL out. You can do this because Google guides you with each component of the campaign tracking link. Have a look at the reference chart below. You can find this with the Google URL Builder tool page.
If you were to generate a campaign tracking link the hard way, you would put together each component of the link and would end up with something like the following:
It’s so ugly I had to cut it off…
Not only is it long and ugly, but more importantly it is very much prone to human error. The fewer keystrokes you hit the better. So my suggestion is to skip the hard way and bookmark the Google URL Builder tool. Each time you launch a link building / traffic generating initiative, fire up the tool and generate your unique campaign tracking link to maximize your efforts.
Readers: Have you been tracking your link building and traffic generating initiatives? Can you share additional tips that can help maximize guest posting efforts?
It sounds like a very useful tool, and I am definitely checking it out.
I have just one doubt, though. What about the SEO aspect? I know when you guest post, you are interested in traffic. But you also want an SEO impact, right?
A regular link would pass on some link juice / page rank to the targetted URL on your own site. Would it be the same if we use the link generated by this tool?
Maybe we can assume this is SEO friendly because the tool & analytics both are from Google?
Welcome to the blog. Good assumption – my understanding is also that the system generated link works as a “flow through” in that the original URL/page linked to is embedded within and still gets the credit.
Interesting, I didn’t actually know they had a URL builder tool for this.
Do you use this for every guest post? I usually just rely on the source to denote where the visitor came from, but I guess this would be handy for situations where you’ve posted multiple times with that website.
I use this method on targeted guest post initiatives, but not all. Very effective.
I have a question because it’s quite a lot I’m using this tool as you suggested, but I can’t find a way to have a good overview on all the parameters.
What I mean is that, using GAnalytics, I can only see how many clicks are coming from a campaign-name. All the other stuff (utm_source for example, which can be very useful) cannot be understood.
So in fact, if I’m using the same campaign-name (e.g blog-comments) but using utm_source = “sitename” which varies, how can I understand which brings what?
Hope you understood my English explaination! 🙂
take good care mate
The site name variable shows what site your links are coming from. Ex: campaign could be “guest posts in June” and sitename can be “site A” “site B” and “site C”.
Send me screen shots of what you are seeing via email and let me compare to mine.
First of all thanks a lot for your help
D’you know what Sunil? I’ve just found out that using the new Analytics version, I can view Campains in different modes, among which there’s a tab called Source!! 🙂 yeeeeeeeeah!
Never noticed that, can you imagine? Shame on me..
Take care mate
Glad you found it Marco. I am sure your comment will help many who have the same question.
I am a bit confused…is there a use for me just a regular blogger who doesn’t really guest post elsehwere?
No use if you are not involved in link building. Many bloggers guest blog, which is just one way to build back links. To summarize, this tool and method is for those who want to determine the effectiveness of their marketing efforts so that they know what / where to focus on when promoting their websites / blogs to get more traffic and better search engine placement.
This is the first time I hear about this Google URL Builder. Amazing from what you describe, very handy when you need a detailed research on your link building methods. Thanks for the info on this, I’ll give it a shot even though I don’t guest post much.
The application is broader than guest posting Christian. It can be handy with link building in general.
You can download a googel url builder chrome extension which is faster and much more handy
excellent tip Assaf – thank you!
Nice blog by the way. Me and my friends are planning to create our own website this tool will surely help us. Thanks.. I will talk to my friends tomorrow and we will discuss things. I am confused, why is it other blog owners doesn’t allow guest posting? 🙂
Welcome Nancy. Guest blogging has benefits to both the writer and the hosting blog. However, many are not aware. Others simply don’t wish to engage for various reasons. All the best.
Now I understand why others don’t allow guest posting. Maybe they are afraid that people will question them if they write something. 🙂
Thanks for the time.
I have heard about the Google URL Builder before but that was before I started guest posting. So I never really learn how to use it. Thanks for sharing this strategy and I will definitely check it out.
hey Janus welcome to the blog. let me know if you have any follow up questions after trying this method. interested in how it works for you.
good post. we use this strategy to measure how effective our backlink building efforts are when working on our clients’ businesses