Tracking Your Twitter Tweets with Google Analytics

If you want to share information about your web content and engage online communities, Twitter is the tool you're looking for. Twitter is a powerful tool, and it's important that you know just how effective it is in drawing traffic to your website.

tracking twitter in google analytics

A report can be generated by Google Analytics, and this report focuses on your Twitter traffic. This report from Google is very interesting, because it separates Twitter signal from the other referral sources to your website. There's a lot of information available, such as average time spent on a page, number of page views, bounce rate (percent of people who stay on a page), and other information. By carefully analyzing this information you quickly learn Twitter tweets are working for you, and where improvements should be made.

You can track Twitter traffic on any page of your website; it's not limited to just one specific page.

In order to receive this report you must implement an advanced segment on your Twitter-related sources for example (bit.ly or t.co). It only takes three simple steps.

In this short guide I will be showing you how to create a Google Analytics report which concentrates on Twitter tweets. This report will divide Twitter from the other referrals to your website. You're probably wondering why you wouldn't just click on t.co in your referral report? If you create a separate report, then not only can you track Twitter-related references, for example "hootsuite", but you can use this segment for any report - i.e. you're also able to see how many new vs. returning visitors came through Twitter.

Here's How to Track Twitter Signal Using Analytics

  1. Step number one is the creation of an advanced segment. On the left side navigation bar click “Traffic Sources”, then click “Referrals”. At the top of the page click "Advanced Segments", then click the "New Custom Segment" button.
  2. Now you need to enter the source you want included. Google Analytics is then able to extract data containing these words. In this instance we're looking for any Twitter-related references - for example: hootsuite, t.co, bit.ly, tweetdeck and Twitter. Name this segment so that it describes all sources, such as "twitter traffic". Click the "save segment" button. Can you now see the trend and the metrics, such as Visits, Average Visit Duration, Bounce Rate etc. for your Twitter traffic.
  3. Now you'll be able to apply this Twitter segment to any reports within Google Analytics. This effectively means that you can now track your Twitter traffic for specific pages, such as landing pages, or for all pages.
  • Click “Advanced Segments” if you wish to check Twitter traffic for a specific report. Check the Twitter segment that you just created, then click “Apply”.
  • You now have a report showing the statistics on your Twitter traffic.

The best thing about this advanced segment is that you now know the percentage of page views brought to your site by Twitter. You'll find this statistic at the top of the report.

So if you’re using Twitter to drive traffic to a site:

  1. Always use a Tiny URL
  2. Always add Google Analytics campaign tracking information to your Tiny URL

It's also possible to create an advanced segment for other social media tools, such as LinkedIn and Facebook.