How to Create a Paid Social Channel in Google Analytics

Why a paidsocial channel?

Simply put, if you advertise on any of the social networks e.g. Facebook, Twitter, Linked In, etc, you’re going to want this traffic its own channel so you can easily compare it alongside your other channels.

Once you create a Paid Social channel, you can analyze the quality and ROI of this channel compared to others in the Acquisition>All Traffic>Channels report in Google Analytics (see below screenshot). Here’s how to create a new channel for Paid Social in Google Analytics…

Navigate to Channel Groupings in the Admin

Click Admin>Views>Select Your Master View>Channel Settings>Channel Grouping

Admin>Views>Channel Grouping

Edit Default Channel Grouping

Click Default Channel Grouping to edit it

Click Default Channel Grouping

Define a new channel

  • Click Define a new channel
  • Define the rules of your new paidsocial channel:
    • Name: Paid Social
    • Medium contains paidsocial
    • Select a Display Color
    • Click Done
Click Define New Channel

Sort paidsocial Channel

Click and drag your newly created paidsocial channel to be below the Paid Search channel. Yes, order matters, but that’s a topic for another blog post.

Define Your New Channel

Save Channel Grouping

Click Save to save your new Default Channel Grouping.

Click Save

Append custom parameters to your URL

Make sure you give your social ads on Facebook, Twitter and the like a custom parameter appended to the URL with a medium equal to paidsocial. This will tell Google Analytics to attribute anyone that clicks on the ad to the paidsocial channel.

Append UTM param of medium=paidsocial
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