Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

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Anonymous
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Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

We are seeing big discrepancies in our email click-through data in Marketo versus UTM traffic data in Google Analytics.

For example, Marketo reports 535 clicks and Google Analytics reports 115 users clicked through.

There are these discrepancies on all campaigns in September/October.

Has anyone had similar issues?

7 REPLIES 7
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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

Realize that GA is not logging clicks, it's logging JS-enabled pageviews resulting from clicks. Marketo is logging activity on the email links themselves.

The discrepancy is almost surely from anti-spam scanners following your links to check for malicious content.

There have been a number of discussions here about this phenomenon, but there is no all-purpose solution (for very good technical reasons).

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Anonymous
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Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

The only other piece of the puzzle here is that this total email referral traffic has gone down by a substantial percentage in Sept/Oct so it seems like something else is going on (there was no adjustment in email frequency/volume to account for this decrease). And a colleague (at same company but different instance of Marketo) that just transitioned from ExactTarget is seeing same issues, a drop in GA email referral by 50%.

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

(You probably don't need to copy the same reply!)

If what you're noting is GA going down -- both as a percentage and as raw numbers -- while Marketo is stable, then GA may have become more sensitive to certain kinds of JS-enabled automated scanners (and is discarding that traffic from results). 

Just because a machine hit your links doesn't mean that machine wasn't also able to run JS (some of them do in order to perform deep scanning -- they are basically "headless browsers"). 

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Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

Hey,

Do you add a specific campaign tracking code on your links in your emails?  If someone opens and clicks from within a browser (such as gmail for example), it could be recorded as referral instead of email. By adding a specific tagging, it could help you keep your data clean in GA.

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Level 10 - Community Moderator

Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

In any modern browser, the referrer of a tracked link is the tracking server URL.  Same as if you click from a desktop mail client. They are both GETting the tracked URL first.

Only an untracked link (which can't be relevant here if there are Clicked Link activities being recorded) could have a webmail URL as the referrer.

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Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

Hey Meighan Berberich​,

I agree with what Sanford says. The discrepancy can somewhat be explained by the anti-spam scanners.

Also, in Marketo, you are looking at total clicks, not at the number of unique users who have clicked on your email. So if a person clicks 5 times on your email, you will get 5 clicks in Marketo. From what you say, it looks like you are looking at users in GA (users clicked through).

Try to create a smartlist to see how many members have clicked on your email. This number should come closer to the number of users you get in GA

Emma

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Anonymous
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Re: Email Click Report discrepancies Marketo vs Google Analytics

The only other piece of the puzzle here is that this total email referral traffic has gone down by a substantial percentage in Sept/Oct so it seems like something else is going on (there was no adjustment in email frequency/volume to account for this decrease). And a colleague (at same company but different instance of Marketo) that just transitioned from ExactTarget is seeing same issues, a drop in GA email referral by 50%.