How to Track Adwords Video Remarketing in Google Analytics

Hopefully you're trying and testing out Adwords Video Remarketing.  Adwords for video is right in the main campaign area but Adwords Video Remarketing is separated out a bit.  

About Adwords Video Remarketing:  One of the nice differences with Video Remarketing is you can remarket to people who have interacted with your YouTube channel or page and serve them ads.  For full information, see Google's info and start testing:  

https://support.google.com/adwords/answer/2545661?hl=en

This post is about tracking traffic and engagement from your Adwords Video Remarketing to your site.  Did your Video Remarketing campaigns result in more traffic to your site, more conversions.  

Problem:

After running a number of Video Remarketing campaigns I noticed that I was getting alot of views of the clients videos and even clicks to the site, which is great.  

However, when I went into Google Analytics (GA), I didn't see any stats from these video remarketing campaigns, traffic numbers, or other data.  I contacted Google and they said that, unlike regular Google Adwords where everything is tracked automatically in GA if you have GA and Adwords linked,  at this time the tracking is not really up and running for video remarketing as a source of traffic you can measure in Google Analytics.  

Since its so important to track all your advertising to see if its brings good ROI, there had to be a workaround, and there is.  And in looking around in finding a solution to this workaround I found a couple of other cool things and tips that can benefit your tracking efforts.

Solution:

Use Google's URL Builder: GA has a feature that allows you to track anything on the web you set up and see the data in your GA account.  You use utm tracking parameters to tell GA where the traffic came from.  For example, if you have an ad on a site, you can add info to the link in that add that goes to your page.  So in the ad it goes to perhaps your sites URL:  www.mysite.com when they click on that ad.  If you want to add important information to the ad so you can track it in GA you'd use the utm parameters and add the campaign, ad, and more like this:  www.mysite.com?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=campaign 1&utm_content=new video

It looks confusing but its not.  You use Google's URL builder to set it up, its very easy.  Link here:  https://support.google.com/analytics/answer/1033867?hl=en

Use this to track your Video Remarketing Campaigns:  You can then use the URL builder to add the correct tracking tags to your Video Remarketing list campaigns so you can then see them in GA.  

But I thought Google already automatically tags Adwords, won't this mess up the numbers in GA?  Yes, BUT only if you simply dropped in the tagged URL you created, such as the one you see above.  There is a cool workaround that allows you to tag a URL and not have it mess up Google Adwords auto-tagging.  How?  Use a url shortener.  

Use a URL Shortener to Shorten Tagged URLs:   You're probably familiar with URL shortners like bit.ly or goo.gl.  They take a long, ugly URL and make it real short.  Did you know you can take a long URL that is tagged like the above URL, drop it into goo.gl and shorten it?  The coolest part about this is that the tags you set up still work in the shortened URL!  Super cool!  Even better, now you can track your Adwords Video Remarketing campaigns in GA and not have Adwords Auto Tagging mess up.  

So Let's Recap:

To track Adwords Video Remarketing campaign in GA: 

  1. Use Google's URL builder to correctly set up a tracking URL. 
  2. Drop that tagged URL into goo.gl URL shortener. 
  3. Use that shortened URL as your destination URL in your Adwords Video Remarketing ad. 

Questions?

1.  Great I set this up, Now where do I look for my data in GA? 

Good Question!  In GA go to Traffic Sources>Overview>Search>Campaigns:

Then you'll see your Video Remarketing data there.   

Question 2:  Is there an easier way to create the utm parameters and then shorten them?

Well, its really not that hard going to Google's URL Builder then dropping them into goo.gl to shorten them.  But since you asked- yes!

There's a cool tool from savio.no that not only creates the tagged URL but can shorten it on the fly, download it to Excel, make a QR code from it and more.  Check it out here.

Here's a screenshot of the tool with an example URL:   

savio.JPG

Of course, you can use this technique to track anything you'd like, Facebook ads and posts, Tweets, anything else you'd like to track.  See this great article to learn all about utm parameters and all the things you can track:  

How To Use UTM Parameters In Google Analytics 5

So, what do you think, will this help you track your Video Remarketing ads in Google Analytics? 

 Update:  I noticed that in Google Analytics (GA), there were a number of keywords showing up as (not set).  I figured out that it was the URLs from the above Adwords Video Remarketing campaigns.  The only way I know to have it not show up as (not set) is to add a utm term or utm keyword parameter.  

You could put it like this (see bold are in URL below):  http://www.mysite.com?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=mycampaignname_video_remarketing&utm_content=my_ad&utm_term=no_keyword_video_ad

Its not a perfect workaround but at least you won't have many visits showing up as (not set) and clients wondering why this is the case.