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Channels

This article will explain how to tag other marketing channels (including using UTM tagging) , setup a new channel, edit a channel and show you an overview of the channel tab within the Portal.

Channels Overview

Within Infinity, Channels are rule-based groupings of your traffic sources. The different tabs of your Infinity Portal and reports allow you to see your data organized by Channel which make it easy for you to analyse the performance of each of your traffic channels and the campaigns that sit within these channel groupings.

The configuration of Channels is explained in great detail in this article but we will start with an overview of what the Infinity Default Channels are, Other Marketing Channel options, Channel Types, how they work and what you may use them for to begin with.

Default Channels

Infinity has the most common channels already set up as Default, you can see their configuration settings under the Channels section of the Tracking Settings in your Portal. There are 5 Default Channels and you have the option to further configure Custom Channels to group traffic using multiple Channel Detection options which are explained in greater detail in the Channel Detection Modes section of this article. Alternatively you have the option to set up Offline Channels for fixed numbers only which does not require any Channel Detection Modes as there is no online activity:

  • Paid Search - Groups together your Paid Search traffic by reading keyword tags if they are present and if not it will use the UTM mediums cpc, ppc and paidsearch. If there are none of these present but you have PPC auto enabled on your PPC accounts we will use this to group into Paid Search. You can read more on Adwords & Bing tagging in their own articles. We suggest having PPC fully tagged to ensure getting the most granular level of data available.
  • Organic - All traffic from an Organic/SEO source will be captured by this channel. We use our own unique algorithm to detect Publisher, Domain, and Search Term and display this to you in an easy to view table within the channels tab. It is important to note that Google have been blocking search terms since 2011 so you should not expect to see much data under Search Term. We only display what is made available to us.
  • Website Direct - This channel will capture all Direct traffic to your site, this will be visitors that type your web address into their search bar or have clicked an untagged link from an email or other offline source.
  • Website Referrer - Any traffic that is referred from another domain will show within this channel. If you have a landing URL on another website, the website domain it is on will show as the referrer. You can use this channel to see your top performing referring domains and consider creating Custom Channels and tagging landing URLs accordingly to see how similar campaigns perform.
  • Unknown - Traffic where a source was undetected will show as Unknown. You should not see any visits assigned to this channel but you may see calls and goals. Unknown calls and goals may be due visitors having cookies or JavaScript disabled, it may also indicate a tracking issue on your site, contact the Support Team if you see an increase in Unknown traffic.

The Default channels meet the needs of most basic users but you have the ability to create Custom and Offline Channels within the Channel section of the Tracking Settings as you need them.

The Default channels are ordered to run before any Custom and Offline channels you may decide to set up. We would suggest contacting the Support Team prior to making any configuration changes to Default channels.

Configuring Other Marketing Channels and their Types

If you have more Marketing sources that do not fall into the 5 defaults you have set up in Infinity then it is easy to create both Custom and Offline channels in your Portal. These Other Marketing Channels will fall into 2 channel types:

  1. Custom - can have a mixture of online and offline activity such as static fixed number calls (offline) as well as dynamic calls and visits (online).
  2. Offline - these channels will have offline activity only such as static fixed number calls.

Some common Custom and Offline channels set up are:

  • Email - This would usually be a Custom channel type as you can use destination URLs to send traffic to your site that will result in online activity and also assign Fixed numbers for use in the emails that would generate offline activity. The offline activity will show alongside the visits and dynamic calls (online) generated by the lands from the tagged URL in your email.
  • Social - You would make this a Custom Channel as traffic would mostly be being referred from Social campaigns in Networks such as Facebook and Twitter. You can also used Fixed numbers to show in the campaigns themselves on the referring social domains.
  • Offline - We usually see a Channel named Offline used to group together all Marketing material that has offline activity such as Fixed numbers only, this allows you to compare how the campaigns using only fixed numbers are performing side by side.
  • Print - We tend to see this as an offline channel type as it will not generate any visits from the campaign to your site via URLs, you may decide to break out your Offline Marketing into various Offline channels such as Print, Billboard etc instead of just having one channel called Offline for all.

To recap...
Custom channels will be for marketing sources that drive visitors to your site that you can track via visits, calls and resulting goals as well as Fixed numbers in offline campaigns.
Offline custom channels will be for marketing sources that you are not able to track via visits to your site, these channels are used only for calls and goals that come as the result of calls to Fixed numbers. PPC channels are only suitable for auto-detecting PPC and Bing activity, they do not auto-detect PPC activity from other search engines.

Have a read through the rest of the Channels article to see how to set up and edit custom channels, order custom channels to run in priority order and learn more about the technical specifications of channel set ups.

Who can make changes?

You will require certain permissions to create and edit in the channel screens, these are only assigned under the Administrator and Tracking Manager Roles. Contact the Support Team to update your permissions if needed.

How to create a new channel

To setup a new Custom (Channel with Online and Offline capabilities) Channel, simply follow the below steps:

IMPORTANT: Once a Channel has been setup and has traffic within it, it cannot be deleted and the channel type cannot be changed.

  1. Log into the Portal
  2. Select Admin
  3. Select Tracking Settings
  4. Select Channels
  5. Select Create new Channel
  6. Enter Channel Name e.g. Affiliate
  7. Select Custom as your Channel Type
  8. Depending on how you would like us to detect visits from this channel you need to enable and configure one or more detection modes that can be used to identify lands. These are explained in detail in Channel Detection Modes section just below. Please read before completing your channel set up.
  9. Select a Number Allocation Mode from the drop down, this will usually be Visitor Shared Pool which is the default allocation mode, unless previously agreed with us. You can read more on Number Allocation Mode a bit further down this article. Please ensure you have read this before using anything other that Visitor Shared Pool for a new channel.
  10. Save Changes

UTM Tag.png

To setup a new Offline Channel, simply follow the below steps:

  1. Log into the Portal
  2. Select Admin
  3. Select Tracking Settings
  4. Select Channels
  5. Select Create new Channel
  6. Enter Channel Name e.g. Affiliate
  7. Select Offline as your Channel Type (Offline channels should be used for all marketing that do not have a clickable URL links e.g. TV adverts, brochures)
  8. Select Number Allocation Mode (Visitor Shared Pool is the default allocation mode, unless previously agreed with us)
  9. Select Save Changes

To setup a new PPC Channel, simply follow the below steps:

  1. Log into the Portal
  2. Select Admin
  3. Select Tracking Settings
  4. Select Channels
  5. Select Create new Channel
  6. Enter Channel Name e.g. Affiliate
  7. Select PPC as your Channel Type (PPC channels should only be setup if they are being used for another type of paid search for AdWords or Bing, this is not appropriate for other search engines)
  8. Select Number Allocation Mode (Visitor Shared Pool is the default allocation mode, unless previously agreed with us)
  9. Select Save Changes

Channel Detection Modes

Channel Detection Modes

Depending on how you would like us to detect visits from a channel you need to enable and configure one or more detection modes that can be used to identify lands.

If needed you can use a mixture of these configuration options and they will be read in the following order:

  1. Infinity Basic tags
  2. UTM mediums
  3. Referring Domains

UTM Mediums

We can use your existing UTM Mediums, we use the medium to identify the channel that this should be placed and we pull through other UTM parameters as so within the Portal:

  • UTM Medium -> Infinity Channel
  • UTM Source -> Infinity Publisher
  • UTM Campaign -> Infinity Campaign
  • UTM Term -> Infinity Keyword
  • UTM URL Publisher (if applicable) -> Infinity Domains

Here is a visual of the channel breakdown looks in the Infinity Portal when using the UTM method:

UTM Breakdown 1.png

Due to this granular breakdown, and the ease of using existing UTM tags, we recommend the UTM tagging method for your Infinity channels.

Basic Tags

You may want to use basic tags if there are no existing UTM mediums for us to look for in your landing URLs or if you do not want us pulling through the data using your UTM medium and UTM term.

Please tick the box if you wish to use this method of tagging and enter the tag/s you would like us to identify e.g. affiliate

Here is an example affiliate URL:

www.infinitycloud.com/?affiliate=january2016campaign

Referring Domains

If you have a referring domain that sends you traffic you can alternatively add that referring domain to one of your channels e.g.

Here is an example referring URL:

www.calltrackingnews.com

Number Allocation Mode

You are able to select the Number Allocation mode of a channel depending on how you would like the number replacement to behave for a certain channel.

There are 3 options:

  • Visitor Shared Pool: This option will show the visitor a number from your dynamic pool, these are numbers that have no specific channel allocation

  • Visitor Channel Pool: This is a deprecated feature but if you are a legacy client and have your dynamic numbers allocated to a particular channel for Marketing Source Call Routing you need to set the channel to use Visitor Channel Pool allocation. This means that only the numbers assigned to the specific channel will be shown to a visitor with the same source, this ensures that calls are routed correctly as per your desired set up.

  • No Allocation: Infinity will not allocate any dynamic numbers for a channel with this allocation mode set.

Marketing Channel Tagging

We recommend that you tag all marketing data that you have control over. The first step to identify what this is would be to look in your Website referrer channel and pick out any traffic that could be tagged under a unique channel.

An example for this might be creating a Social channel to include Facebook, twitter & Linkedin. We also advise to keep the channels top level and generic, this helps you report more easily within the Portal and helps keep your Portal tidy.

If you use UTM tags, we can use these instead of adding basic tags. In fact, we recommend this for ease of tagging and the granular campaign breakdown it provides in the Portal.

UTM Tagging Method

We identify the UTM parameters from the query string and pull these into your channel breakdown reports. Here is the guide:

When you add or edit a channel, tick the box next to UTM Medium and place any relevant UTM mediums into the free text field. We have the comma delimited list of AFFILIATE,AFFILIATES,Affiliate,Affiliates,Aff,affiliate,affiliates,aff against our Affiliates channel.

UTM Tag.png

Check your UTMs in the URLs, ensure you are happy with how these will breakdown in your Infinity reports. Here is an example UTM Medium URL:

www.infinitycloud.com?utm_source=calltrackingnews&utm_medium=affiliate&utm_campaign=winter2016&utm_term=casestudy

This is how it would break down in the Infinity Portal under our Affiliates channel:

UTM Breakdown 2.png

Infinity Basic Tags Method

Basic Tagging - Channel Config.png

Here is an example of a tag for each of these examples.

Channel Name = Social

Channel Tag = social

Here are how the URL's may look:

www.infinitycloud.com/?social=facebook   
www.infinitycloud.com/?social=twitter 
www.infinitycloud.com/?social=linkedin 

If you already have ? in your query string you will need to replace the ? with an ampersand (&), here are examples using this method:

www.infinitycloud.com?utm_source=facebook&utm_medium=pagepost&utm_campaign=website&social=facebook
www.infinitycloud.com/call-tracking?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=profile&utm_campaign=website&social=twitter
www.infinitycloud.com?utm_source=linkedin&utm_medium=profileprojects&utm_campaign=website&social=linkedin

This is how it will breakdown in the Infinity channel reports:

Basic Tags Breakdown.png

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