Acquisition Channels reporting provides an overview view of information on the sources of traffic to your website. This suite of reports uses Google’s default channel organization to categorize Traffic Sources into basic categories such as referrals, Organic Search, direct, email, social, etc.
Acquisition Channels reporting provides an overview view of information on the sources of traffic to your website. This suite of reports uses Google’s default channel organization to categorize traffic sources into basic categories such as referrals, organic search, direct, email, social, etc.
- Referrals: Other websites (non-search engines) where Users clicked a hyperlink (pointing to your website). Example: Your Aunt Jane is an avid blogger and links to your website from hers. Then, her website visitors click on your link and visit your website.
- Organic search: Traffic which comes from search engines, but excludes all Paid Search engine traffic.
- Direct: Traffic which comes from people directly typing in your website URL OR bookmarking your website in their browser.
- Email: Traffic coming from email marketing efforts (and tagged as such).
- Social: Traffic coming from recognized social networks.
Sample Channel Reports
The Acquisition Channels report provides a high-level view of where your traffic comes from. Note the ability to click on any channel and drill-down for more detail. This is a great starting point to begin investigating traffic sources.
Real World Uses
- This report is the best starting point to begin understanding where your current traffic comes from. Drilling down (clicking on each channel) allows for a more detailed vview of that specific channel.
- These channels should not be confused with Source / Medium reports. Channels represent the “out of the box” traffic categories which Google uses.
- Channels lacking in traffic are often opportunities. For example, a website with little/no email traffic likely doesn’t have an established email marketing program and may befit from one.
- Q: My company does tons of email marketing but this report doesn’t show any traffic from the “email” channel! A: In some cases, channel traffic requires traffic to be correctly “tagged” in order to track. If your email marketing, search marketing, display advertiisng, etc. campaigns are not tagged using UTM Codes, the channel report will likely be incorrect. We’ll cover this more in subsequent lessons.