There are many benefits to campaign tracking URLs, but there are a few potential drawbacks you should consider.

Hard to Type

Campaign tracked URLs are perfect for digital campaigns as users only have to click on them for them to work. However, they don’t work so well for print campaigns as the final URLs are usually too complex for users to type in manually. Some potential solutions for this are link shortening services like or you can use a QR Code that people can scan with their mobile device.

Long URLs

Longer tracking URLs can also cause challenges in the digital world. For instance, when you have a limited number of characters available for a social media post or text message, you don’t want to use most of them with a long tracking URL. Again, a potential solution here is to use a link shortening service like

Potentially Inaccurate

When campaign tracking links are shared, it can lead to inaccurate reporting. For example, sending an email with the following link to your email marketing newsletters makes sense:

However, if one of your subscribers copies and pastes the link to their Facebook page, they are unlikely to remove the campaign tracking values. This means that any of their friends who click on the Facebook link will now also be marked up in your analytics as having come from the customer_newsletter campaign via email.

In a way, you could say the root source of the visit is from the email campaign as the subscriber wouldn’t have shared it otherwise. However, the description no longer accurately describes the visit from the Facebook friend also using that link. This means the actual numbers attributed to the specific medium and source are not exactly correct.

Overwrites Channel Type Tracking

When you use campaign tracking links, visits from those links are always attributed to the Campaigns channel type. For example, if you share your campaign tracking links on social media, visits from those links would appear to come from the Campaigns channel instead of Social Networks within your Matomo Acquisition reports.

Channel Type Table

This can heavily influence the channel type reports and make it look like you don’t get much traffic from social media when in reality there may be quite a few visits coming from sites such as Facebook through campaign links. This means it is important to include the social network within your campaign tracking values for links shared on social media, so you get a realistic picture of the channels your campaign visitors are coming from. For example, you might include the mtm_source parameter with the value facebook so it is clear when campaigns are associated with the social network.

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