The Web Analytics Connector (WAC) is a free Marketing Cloud feature that appends a ‘string’ to every Email Studio email link. Simply put, it adds data to the end of your links for tracking purposes. The string is typically used to add Google Analytics UTM Parameters, but it can really be used for anything you want. You have complete control over the contents of the “string”.
If your company is new to the Marketing Cloud, and/or wants to take advantage of Google Analytics without the added expense of the Google Analytics 360 Integration for Marketing Cloud add-on, then the Marketing Cloud WAC is a great way to implement tracking capabilities at no cost.
Before diving into a deeper explanation of the WAC, let’s review the standard Google Analytics UTM Parameters, and then have a quick refresh on the different data levels of link tracking in Email Studio.
The Web Analytics Connector can be used to track all four Data Levels. However, for the purpose of this article, we’ll only focus on Account Level and Email Level link data.
Here’s an example link. The WAC string portion appears in bold.
This example uses both Account Level and Email Level Data:
Now let's break down the entire example above:
By setting up WAC, you have the ability to add up to 5 input boxes that will appear on the Template-Based Email’s “Properties” section. These inputs are referred to as Additional Email Attributes (AEAs). The AEA input boxes make it easy to add Email Level parameters by entering a static value. Personalization Strings can also be added to the input box to pull in Contact data. Keep in mind however, it is up to you to determine how many input boxes (or AEAs) you would like to use, as well as which AEA corresponds with which UTM Parameter. These decisions are what determine how you construct your string.
In order to setup WAC for your Marketing Cloud account, you need to open a support ticket. You will want to specify the number of Additional Email Attribute inputs you would like to use, as well as how you would like to have them labeled. You will also be asked to provide the string you would like to add to your links. Again, this configuration is completely up to you to decide.
Let’s revisit our example string:
The January 2020 Release included a great new WAC feature called the Parameter Manager. This feature allows MC Administrators to update their string from within Marketing Cloud. Previously, this would have required an additional support request to make any changes. You can find the Parameter Manager by clicking “Setup” under your user name in the top right corner.
From the Setup section, navigate to Administration > Data Management > Parameter Manager. There you will find your WAC string, and a button to edit it.
This is a big win because now you can update and test new string variations as often as you like, although adding or editing Additional Email Attributes still requires assistance from support.
Yes it can! However, like many Marketing Cloud customizations, this will require some AMPscript. I ran into this issue when the WAC string was preventing a dynamic Tracking Link from resolving properly. That’s definitely another story, but this StackExchange Article will point you in the right direction if you’re interested in learning how. Thanks again Jackson Chen and Adam Spriggs for your help!
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