To give you an idea of how we can do this, I’ll use an actual example from the Digital Body Language blog. Valeria Maltoni on Conversation Agent referred to the Digital Body Language blog in a post on her site. That post began driving traffic, and I wanted to understand what that traffic was looking like.
In this case, Valeria had been kind enough to insert a custom tracking query string (more on that later as it opens up some interesting options), but in most cases you won't have that, so we'll set up referrer tracking assuming that custom tracking query string wasn't there.
To set it up, I went to the Web Profiling -> Referrers area and created a new Online Media campaign. These track external campaigns based on two main things, the referring URL and the landing URL. I set this up so that any visitors to any Eloqua web property (the Digital Body Language blog is tracked as part of the overall set of Eloqua web properties) that came from Conversation Agent would be marked as being part of this referrer campaign for reporting purposes.
This was done by adding the Conversation Agent URL as a referring URL, and leaving the landing URL blank. By checking the box to check for past website activity, anyone visiting from this referral recently would automatically be added. Given that we often don't know in advance of a referral in social media, and the traffic spike will happen within a day or two, this is a very useful ability.
To see which visitors came to the blog from Conversation Agent, all we have to do is select the “View Marketing Campaign Visitors” menu item, and we’ll see a list of the visitors that came from Valeria’s referral link.
What we’ve done for tracking a referring blog as an online referral source can be done with any similar online source. If the referring site, landing URL, or both, are known, you can easily define that as an online referral source and quickly and easily understand which of your visitors have been referred via that source, without the need for custom links and query strings.
We've used this internally for any campaigns that drive traffic to our site, whether from blogs, industry analysts, or news. It provides a great perspective on where each individual is coming from, and traffic patterns in general.