Some of our customers have asked us how to determine if a specific Email Send is responsible for a given sale. It is possible to track this, but since you send your emails with ClickDimensions and either you or a third party manage your website and possibly an online payment system, there are two, maybe even three, separate systems that need to be taken into account when setting up this kind of tracking. In this post, I outline one way that this can be accomplished.
In order to track conversions back to a specific email campaign, there must be a path that you can follow from a sale to the email campaign sent to its originating Lead. The best way to create this path would be to add an identifying parameter to the link(s) in your emails that is then carried through each Page View all the way to the confirmation page that the customer sees upon completing a purchase.
For example, you could include a link like this in your emails sent during Q1 2016: http://www.clickdimensions.com/?email=q1
When someone clicks on that link, they will be taken to clickdimensions.com, and that "email=q1" parameter will be appended to the end of the page's URL in their address bar. This parameter will, in turn, be contained in the URL field of the Page View that is generated by this page visit. So, just by looking at that Page View's URL field in CRM and seeing the "email=q1" parameter, you know that this person accessed this page by clicking a link in an email sent during Q1 2016.
The key to creating this conversion-tracking path is carrying this parameter through every page that the Lead visits, including the purchase confirmation page. However, URL parameters are not automatically carried from page to page as you browse a website. Unless the site is designed to carry parameters, the "email=q1" parameter will not be included in the URL of any pages that the Lead visits after the first page.
So, you and/or your web developer(s) will need to make this parameter carry through every page that the Lead views during this visit. Additionally, if your payment page is hosted externally by a third party, you will likely need to work with them to make sure that the "email=q1" parameter is not dropped when the Lead goes to the payment page.
To help you get started, this article covers some basic methods of passing variables between web pages.
Once you have set up your site and payment page so that it will carry the "email=q1" parameter through to the payment confirmation page, you can generate a list of every Lead or Contact that has made a purchase as a result of the Q1 2016 campaign. Simply run an Advanced Find for Leads/Contacts that have a related Page View where Page Title equals [the title of the payment confirmation page] AND the Page View's URL field contains "email=q1."
Written by Weston Packard, Marketing Success Manager