1 November 2017
How to Track Visits from Google Maps in Google Analytics and GA4
If you’re promoting your business through a Google Business Profile, and using GA4 (the latest version of Google Analytics) to track traffic to your website, you can connect the two. In order to definitively identify where your organic visits came from so that you can better measure your online traffic / conversions by source, you need to do the following (and it’s actually very simple!)
1. Create a custom campaign URL for your website
Using https://ga-dev-tools.appspot.com/campaign-url-builder/, you can create a campaign URL for your website, which will be used within your map listing. This allows you to add a custom UTM string to the URL, which can then be tracked within either Universal Analytics or GA4. For example, you might enter something similar to the following in order to indicate that this URL is associated with your Google Maps listing:
This will produce the following campaign URL: https://varn.co.uk/?utm_source=googlemaps https://varn.co.uk/?utm_source=googlemaps
2. Add your custom campaign URL to your Google Maps listing
You can set your website address within Google Maps so that it shows one URL whilst actually using another. For Varn’s map listing, for example, the website address shows as “varn.co.uk” as this is simple, short and clean. But when you click on the link, it takes you to /?utm_source=googlemaps. Always make sure the link people visit when clicking on your map listing takes them to the campaign URL you set up within the previous step.
3. Set up a new Channel Grouping within Google Analytics
If you are still using the older version of Google Analytics – Universal Analytics – you can at this point set up a new custom channel grouping to separate out your Google maps traffic. However, UA will no longer work from summer 2023, so we would recommend you move over to GA4 as soon as possible.
In GA4, you cannot create custom channel groupings – however, we will talk you through how to identify the traffic coming from your Google Maps/ Google Business Profile listing.
From now on, all visits that come through from Google Maps can be seen within Google Analytics. In GA4, simply click on Reports > Acquisition > Acquisition overview, and change the chart ‘Sessions by Session default channel grouping’ to ‘Sessions by Sessions source/medium’ using the drop down menu – as shown below. You will see that Google Maps will be included as a traffic source (as long as you are actually getting visits from this channel). Please note that Analytics won’t pull through historical data for this channel, it will only start tracking these visits from the point of implementation.
You can now accurately track visits from Google Maps, and successfully split out visits from your maps listing from standard organic visits. You can also use this method to track other online campaigns / traffic sources – and even set up custom reports in order to collect additional information or drill down into visitor behaviours / online conversions by source.
If you would like help integrating custom URLs into your map listing / Google Business account or require assistance with any form of Analytics tracking or training, feel free to contact the Analytics qualified professionals at Varn.