Google Analytics is a web traffic analyzer, a service offered by Google to track and measure your content’s Return on Investment (ROI). It works by collecting information about on-site visitors and the number of clicks per content in a month, week, day, or even minute. Google Analytics provides a remarkable insight into user behavior, offers real-time user data, and is an excellent tool for marketing purposes and Search Engine Optimization (SEO). It provides answers to all the questions regarding audience engagement and traffic sources.
What is Medium?
Medium is a categorical description of the kind of web traffic driven to your site. Medium and Source are vital tools in Google Analytics as they assess audience engagement on your website and their demographics. One can also study the behavior patterns of each Medium to analyze which of them is bringing in more traffic and audience engagement. Medium indicates how the user landed on your website.
A Medium is a helpful tool in Google Analytics as it helps break down sections by showing the inbound links, which sites are linking back to your own, and what types of links they are. When looking for SEO, these links work like votes or recommendations. Having a higher authority domain helps you boost your website’s SEO, rather than having links from lower authority websites. High traffic engagement is directly proportional to higher quality and better SEO, meaning not all inbound links are equal.
What are the different Categories of Medium?
The marketing data and traffic can be categorically divided. The various Mediums are:
- Organic Search- Just as the name suggests, this is an organic medium for gaining web traffic on your site. It encircles traffic from search engines such as Google or Bing. If you are looking to maximize page optimization for search engines, this is what you should watch out for.
- Referral- Have you ever noticed pop-ups of various Ads while scrolling through Instagram, Facebook, or other apps or websites? Yes, that is exactly what referral is. This refers to backlinking or inbound linking to your website from another website. With high authority web pages, referral turns out to be an excellent medium for increasing web traffic on your site.
- Paid Search is when you get traffic from your paid ads that appear in the search results on Google, Bing, Quora.com, Ask.com, or AOL.
- Social- This is the most famous Medium in the current day scenario, with the ability to land maximum traffic on your social media page or website. The traffic from the social Medium is calculated based on the number of people landing on your social media account through Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or LinkedIn.
What are Channels?
Channels are categories indicating how the audience located your website. These are groups of different origins of web traffic with the same Medium. Channels are the source locator of traffic and engagement but on a broader aspect. Channels are how Google analytics groups source and Medium together. Mediums determine Channels.
What are the categories of GA marketing channels?
There are two categories of marketing channels in Google Analytics:
Default channels: These are also known as system-defined channels, and they give you a broader perspective of the sources and mediums that bring web traffic. Here are the default marketing channels:
- Organic Search: Organic Search Marketing Channel refers to the number of traffic sources as long as the Medium is organic. Increasing SEO can enhance organic visibility on search engines like Google, Yahoo, or Bing.
- Direct: This marketing channel refers to your website’s URL directly typed in the search bar. When the user lands on your website without a referrer, the Medium turns out to be “none.” A Direct channel can land an insanely high number of user traffic.
- Referral: Referral traffic is the traffic your website gains from a referral by users’ browsers. Referral marketing channels can have various sources as long as the Medium is a referral, for instance, Facebook, Economist, MakeMyTrip, etc. This is an excellent way of increasing your SERP positions with the number of on-site visits.
- Paid Search: Paid Search is what gets you paid traffic on your website by making yourself visible on the search engine. For example, Yahoo Ads, Google Ads, Bing Ads, etc., are all paid search marketing channels.
- Social: This marketing channel tracks the traffic from the Medium of social media, such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, etc.
- Email: This marketing channel refers to your traffic from sending out emails. It is ideally calculated on a click per email basis. An email marketing channel can be getting traffic from multiple sources; however, the Medium should be “email.”
- Display: The display marketing channel identifies your web site’s traffic from display ads. The Medium here needs to be a displayed banner ad, and the “ad distribution network” must match the “content.” For example, displays on MakeMyTrip, Expedia, Economist, Trip advisor, etc.
Custom Marketing Channels: These are user-defined marketing channels. However, one must be familiar with custom channels because the changes cannot be undone once the default grouping channels are edited.
What is the difference between Medium and Channel?
You’ll observe another report called Source/Medium when looking at marketing channels. One will often find Channels and Mediums overlapping in terms of information. However, the critical difference between the two is that Medium categorizes traffic sources, while Channel is a grouping of traffic Mediums.
For example, suppose your website is getting traffic from YouTube and Facebook, social media networks. In that case, as per Google Analytics, your Medium is YouTube and Facebook, and your Channel is Social Media. Medium and Channel are different representations of the same traffic data.
Medium is the Vehicle to the Channel!