A Complete Guide to The New Google URL Builder

The Google URL builder recently migrated to the Campaign URL Builder and became a part of Google Analytics. The Google URL builder is an immensely useful tool for any digital marketer.

In this post, I will cover the origins of UTM tracking or link tracking, the benefits of adding UTM to your URLs, the various UTM parameters and how you can easily do this using Google UTM builder.

Let’s dive right in.

What is Campaign Tracking?

Campaign tracking is commonly used in offline and online advertising to track the success of marketing campaigns like email tracking or ppc ads.

campaign tracking

A UTM parameter is a kind of like a tag on the URL. It adds more information about the link.

The Google URL builder simply allows you to add a tag to the URL, such as UTM parameters, which gives you more details about the visitor than you usually would have.

You might be wondering

What does UTM code look like?

For example:

This is what a link without a UTM code looks like:


But if I wanted to create multiple Facebook Ad campaigns to promote this post or if I sent this in an email, then I wouldn’t know where people came from.
Luckily, there is a solution:

The UTM Parameters: The part of the URL that is bolded is the tracking code.


What is a UTM code?

UTM (Urchin Tracking Module) parameters are an excellent way to link your offline and online campaigns across different platforms onto Google Analytics. Urchin Software Corporation was a technology startup that was acquired by Google in 2005. It has since evolved into Google Analytics.

what is utm code

By adding the code to the end of the URL, you are telling Google Analytics things like Campaign Source, Campaign Medium, Campaign Name, Campaign Term, and Campaign Content.

How can you use UTM codes offline?

utm offline

If you are, for example, running an ad in a newspaper, you could use a vanity URL or a short URL to redirect the link to your website. For example, if I ran an ad for this guide in a magazine, instead of using:


I could use a URL shortener service to instead display:


This way you could track any offline ad campaign like TV, Radio or print ads and compare campaign results on Google Analytics.

The difference between a vanity URL and a Bitly shortener is that the vanity URL is easier to remember and easier to share. For example, brands like Verizon Wireless (vz.to), RE/MAX (rem.ax) and Reddit (redd.it) have creative and recognizable vanity URLs.

Google UTM Parameters

Campaign Source (Required)



 Use utm_source to identify the source of the traffic.

Example: facebook, instagram

Campaign Medium


Use utm_medium to identify a medium of the visit

Example: cpc, email

Campaign Name


This parameter ties the visit to a particular campaign or promotion. Often used to see what is performing well.

Example: utm_campaign=trackingguide

Campaign Term


This is generally only used for paid search to identify the keywords for a visit.

Example: google+analytics+guide+utm

Campaign Content


This is used to differentiate ads that come from the same campaign, like text ad vs. display ad

Examples: displayad or textad

How Can I Use the Google URL Builder?

google url builder

To add UTM tracking codes to your URLs, you can go to the Google Campaign URL Builder website and follow my step-by-step instructions. There are other alternatives to the Google UTM builder like Effin Chrome Extension.

Alternatively, you can download my Excel file to quickly add tracking tags to hundreds of URLs quickly.

Step 1: Enter the link you want to track

In the first field, enter your website URL


Website URL

Step 2: Add the parameters that you’ll want to track

For example, you could use Campaign Source, Campaign Medium, Campaign Name, Campaign Term, and Campaign Content. If you want a quick overview of what these parameters are, click here.

Campaign Source

Campaign Source

Note: It is mandatory to include the Campaign Source.

Campaign Medium

Campaign Medium

Campaign Name

Campaign Name

Campaign Term

Campaign Term

Campaign Content

Campaign Content

Step 3: Copy the link and add to your campaign.

example of utm code

Note: Some tools like Facebook Ad Campaigns only require the UTM Parameters so only insert this part of the URL – ?utm_source=facebook&utm_campaign=trackingguide&utm_medium=cpc

How to Track Campaigns on Google Analytics

Once you’ve set up Google Analytics on your website and have your URL implemented with the tracking code, you can track the results on Google Analytics. This only works if people are clicking through to your website from the link.

Go to Acquisition -> Campaigns

Here you can see data from your custom URL campaigns. From number of visits, time spent per session and other behavior metrics. If you have a Goal set up or other conversion metrics, then you can see the conversion rate, the number of transactions and transaction value (revenue).

With the Google URL builder, you can adjust UTM codes at any time. It is a game-changer for tracking data and website analytics.

Google Analytics UTM Tracking


Now you know how to use the Google URL builder and what UTM codes mean. Don’t forget to download the cheat sheet to the new Google URL builder.

Leave a message down below if you have questions or comments.

  1. Laura
    August 4, 2021 at 8:57 am

    I’ve followed these steps several times, for two different QR codes, but my links are still not showing up when I go to “Campaigns” in GA. Any ideas of what I could be missing?

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