Add3.com

This post may be a little “101” for some but it seems inevitable that whenever it comes time to apply multiple tracking codes to a website, something always goes wrong. So, I thought it best to try and shed some light on the subject. If a website has an analytical solution such as Webtrends, Google Analytics, Clicktracks, etc… and is tracking conversions through a pay per click dashboard like Google AdWords and Yahoo Marketing, then some pages are going to need tracking code snippets for each. Not every page but some. Let me explain.

PPC CODE PLACEMENT
Google AdWords and Yahoo Marketing require the snippet of pay per click tracking code to be placed within a different section of a web page. For Google AdWords it is anywhere within the <BODY> section of the conversion web page and for Yahoo Marketing it is anywhere within the <HEAD> section of the conversion web page.

Each engine only requires the pay per click tracking code to be placed on the pre-defined conversion page NOT every page of the Web site. You may have multiple conversions throughout your site, so the code will need to be placed on each conversion page. For example, if the conversion action that you want to track is a form submission, then the conversion page would be the thank_you page users are directed to AFTER they have submitted the form. This is the page (thank_you) that should contain the PPC tracking code NOT the form page.

ANALYTICAL CODE PLACEMENT
Unlike the PPC tracking code, analytical code must be placed on every web page of your site (or at least, every page of your site that you want to track). Now there are many solutions out there however most, if not all, require the code to be placed anywhere within the <BODY> section of the web page. At Amplify we strongly recommend placing the analytical tracking code towards the very bottom of the <BODY> section so the code does not interfere with organic search placement results. The same holds true for any PPC code that is required to exist within the <BODY> section of a Web page.

The only disadvantage of placing the code towards the bottom of the <BODY> section is that if a web page is slow to load and the user backs out before the tracking code is initiated, then that user’s session will not be accounted for. However in most cases this is not a problem and usually only accounts for a small percentage of the total user sessions.

RECAP
Analytical Code = Every Page
PPC Code = Conversion Page(s) Only

*Conversion pages should contain both, the analytical and PPC tracking codes.
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Ben Lloyd

About Ben Lloyd

Ben Lloyd serves as Principal at Add3 and manages the agency’s Portland office.  Ben got his start in SEM way back in 1999 – when there was like, 15 search engines and Google was barely a thing. Prior to Add3, Ben had founded Amplify Interactive in 2003 (which was acquired by Add3 in 2013), and hasn’t looked back since. Ben likes lots of stuff like golf, pinball, food(ie), booze/beer/wine – in that order, etc. Mostly – he likes doing that stuff with his friends. Ben is also co-founder of SEMpdx. Connect with Ben on LinkedIn

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