Feb 7, 2019 - by Elisa Cooper
For years, we’ve been talking about the need to point defensive domain name registrations to relevant content, and the importance of tracking traffic. Generally speaking, most corporate domain name registrars provide high-level traffic statistics. But here is the dirty little secret that most registrars don’t want to discuss – most of the page views being reported by registrars are the result of bot traffic. After all, who would possibly be typing in www.bbbbrrrrrandsight.com?
So how can you gain better insight into the traffic generated by defensive registrations?
By leveraging your registrar’s standard web forwarding solution in conjunction with UTM codes, web analytics solutions can provide detailed insights into exactly the pages being viewed, the length of sessions, and a number of other variables including the geographical location of the website visitor, their browser type, and the operating system being used to name a few.
UTM codes are simple codes that can be appended to a destination URL. These codes contain information about where and how the traffic was generated.
So for example, www.bbbbrrrrrandsight.com has been forwarded to https://brandsight.com/?utm_source=bbbbrrrrrandsight.com&utm_medium=defensive_domain using standard web forwarding functionality.
By adding ‘?utm_source=bbbbrrrrrandsight.com&utm_medium=defensive_domain’, to the destination domain, the source of the traffic will be identified as ‘bbbbrrrrrandsight.com’ and the medium will be identified as ‘defensive_domain’ in web analytics solutions such as Google Analytics.
While Google Analytics is a free tool and one that is widely used by corporate web and digital marketing teams, there are a number of others as well. Domain professionals should work with web or digital marketing departments to get their buy-in, and to ensure that they will be able to access the data that is captured by their web analytics solutions.
The detailed information provided by web analytics solutions can be used to truly understand whether traffic is being generated by defensive registrations, from where the traffic is coming, and the specific pages being viewed – valuable information that can be used to inform both renewal and registration decisions.
Bringing with her 20 years of marketing experience, Elisa Cooper joined Brandsight in 2017 to lead the organization’s marketing strategy and execution. A domain name industry veteran, Elisa has worked closely with many Fortune 1000 companies in assisting with domain and brand protection policy development and has spoken and written extensively on these topics.