Take the 2-minute tour ×
Webmasters Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for pro webmasters. It's 100% free, no registration required.

A client is looking to track advertising clicks through a newspaper ad to measure success.

They have rigid business requirements that it will be a unique domain... e.g. foowidgetsnews.net instead of foodwidgets.com/contact-form-page.php

What is the most reliable method of building redirected url to a landing page so it will be tracked in google analytics as a direct hit from the newspaper?

Finally, we would like to track the foowidgetsnews.net as the main url in google analytics because 301 redirect isn't tracked in google analytics like the way we would like it to.

share|improve this question
add comment

1 Answer

up vote 1 down vote accepted

If you do not want to do a 301 redirect, then I would suggest not doing a redirect of any kind as 301 is the only one that retains SEO and makes any sense. Your other option is to use a rel=canonical on foowidgetsnews.net that points to foodwidgets.com/contact-form-page.php. That should give foodwidgets.com/contact-form-page.php all of the SEO juice and not cause Google to see foowidgetsnews.net. Then you can make any links on foowidgetsnews.net go to your main domain.

Another option would be to block Google from seeing the entire foowidgetsnews.net domain with the robots.txt file and don't do a redirect like above.

One issue you will run into if you do not do a redirect to your main site from foowidgetsnews.net is that users will bookmark foowidgetsnews.net and go back to it which will mess with your results for the newspaper ad.

However, you should be able to do a 301 redirect using some Google Analytics magic. See this article for more info on how. Doing more research on Google Analytics site should also help you find several different ways to track redirects.

Finally, your best solution is to probably just use a 301 redirect if you can use Google's Analytics to solve your tracking issue. That will keep it super simple.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.