Tracking organic search and paid search referrals
March 13, 2008 8:13 AM   Subscribe

Under the hood of Google Analytics. GA does a great job of segmenting paid and organic search metrics - traffic, keywords, etc. How does it know one from the other ?

I'm trying to build an organic search tracking system on my website. I want to cookie people who've come in from organic search differently to how I want to cookie people who've come in from paid search. My problem is, I don't know how to differentiate between organic and paid referrals. The referrer is always the same for both isn't it ?

I also need this to work across different search engines - Google, Yahoo, MSN, etc etc.

Anyone have any experience of doing this ? How do I tell an organic refferal from a paid one consistently across multiple search engines ?
posted by superfurry to Computers & Internet (3 answers total)
No. The referrer for a paid search referral will have some extra stuff in the referrer URL that differentiates it.
posted by GuyZero at 8:42 AM on March 13, 2008

The way I did it, and the way I'm pretty sure GA does it, is by building a database of search engines and parsers for their referring URLs.
posted by qvtqht at 7:32 PM on March 13, 2008

Response by poster: cool - anyone care to share specifics - these suggestions are good, but they dont get me any further without specifics on what I should be looking for. Thanks
posted by superfurry at 12:50 PM on March 15, 2008

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