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How does HubSpot track original source?

How does HubSpot track original source?

When you're setting up an email campaign, it can be helpful to see how many people have already interacted with your website or blog in the past—and what their interests may have been while they were there. This data helps marketers assess whether certain content will appeal to customers.

Hubspot provides access to this kind of "original" source data for tracking visitors' behavior across multiple channels (email marketing, social media advertising, etc.). We'll show you exactly where that data comes from, as well as explain why you might want to use it.

In addition to showing you how to view these metrics yourself, we've also created a guide detailing how to find and analyze original source using Google Analytics. If you'd like more details before getting started, continue reading!

How does HubSpot set original source?

The definition of original source is unique to HubSpot. Original source refers specifically to the state of having had no other interaction with any channel. In order to determine if someone has come directly through to your site, HubSpot uses cookies stored by both parties. The cookie stores a record of all previous interactions between users and websites. It then compares new user sessions against those records to establish whether the visitor came directly through to your site.

If HubSpot determines that the person did not come straight through, the session becomes labeled as indirect. A similar process applies when determining whether a customer who visited once was the result of organic search engine optimization (SEO).

Websites often offer incentives such as free shipping or a free trial period to encourage repeat visits. These incentives could affect the results of original source analysis because some visitors may choose to buy at their next visit rather than during one initial purchase. However, this isn't always true. For example, if you run a restaurant, offering a coupon code only works for guests who make reservations ahead of time. Customers looking for last minute deals tend to bypass online menus entirely.

It's important to note that the way HubSpot analyzes original source depends on how the company defines its terms. As mentioned above, HubSpot allows companies to customize their own definitions of original source, so different businesses may provide slightly different interpretations.

For instance, HubSpot considers a clickthrough as someone coming directly from outside your domain. If your sales funnel includes several steps after landing on your site, however, someone clicking through could end up being counted as coming from within your domain. You should check your account settings to ensure that you haven't accidentally included clicks originating from internal links.

HubSpot sets original source based upon two factors: whether the visitor clicked a link or button leading to your website, and whether the visitor spent enough time interacting with your site to qualify as "engaged." Visitors who just open an email but don't interact further aren't considered engaged visitors.

Engagement happens when anyone viewing a specific piece of content interacts with it in some way. While engagement doesn't necessarily mean conversion, it indicates that your audience found something valuable within the message. Engagement can include opening emails, sharing posts, liking pages, commenting, adding followers/following, subscribing, posting reviews, filling out forms, or anything else that shows interest.

Even though HubSpot takes into consideration things like pageviews versus views per day, engagement still matters. That's because HubSpot tracks conversions differently depending on the industry. For example, HubSpot treats ecommerce sites differently from general consumer-facing brands. Since every brand is ultimately trying to convert leads into subscribers, customers, clients, or whatever else, HubSpot needs to treat them accordingly.

As described earlier, HubSpot measures original source separately from tracked sources and uniques. HubSpot calls each unique combination of IP address and browser ID a "session," regardless of whether that session resulted in a click on a particular link. Uniques help identify individual browsers. Using a unique lets HubSpot know whether you sent the same email to multiple people at once (known as blast) or whether the same person opened multiple copies simultaneously (duplicate). Both situations would count toward duplicate views.

However, since HubSpot focuses primarily on email marketing campaigns, it doesn't track mobile devices. Therefore, if a friend opens an email via his smartphone, it won't count under duplicates, even if he received 10 identical messages. On the other hand, if your newsletter contains images or videos, HubSpot will recognize whether that email was opened on a desktop computer or a tablet.

How do I change the original source on HubSpot?

You can adjust your original source settings in the Campaigns tab. Once there, select Email Marketing Preferences & Tracking Settings. Then scroll down until you reach Original Source Drill Down. Change this option to No Drill Down or Direct Traffic Only.

Direct traffic means that all activity on your site counts towards original. When you enable original source drilling down, HubSpot removes all interactions from the indirect category, effectively removing all of your indirect contacts from public reports. Depending on your goals, this could either increase transparency or reduce clutter.

Some companies prefer to remove all indirect sources altogether, instead of changing their default options. To do this, go back to the Email Marketing preferences screen and disable Indirect Tracking completely. HubSpot recommends doing this only if your goal is to focus exclusively on direct traffic. Otherwise, disabling indirect tracking without adjusting original source is likely to produce false positives.

What is original source drill-down HubSpot?

Drill-downs let you break down various categories of original source to understand better how your current efforts impact overall performance. They allow you to look at everything from aggregate totals to detailed stats. Drilling down gives you insight into areas where you can improve.

A good rule of thumb is to keep all levels visible in your reporting unless you believe that one level is providing inaccurate information. For instance, if you notice that your total number of unique viewers is higher than expected, you probably shouldn't hide subcategories at the highest level. Conversely, if you notice that numbers seem low, hiding high-level categories makes sense.

Once you've drilled down to a desired depth, it's easy to compare segments of visitors that share common characteristics. For example, you might decide to send follow-up emails to everyone whose primary demographic falls into a given age range. By comparing demographics, you can create clearer targeting criteria.

To add a drill-down to your report, hover over the segment name in question and press Ctrl + D. Next, simply enter the group you wish to drill down to. Finally, select Create Report.

Drilled-down reports work best when combined with cross tabs. Cross tabs display comparisons between groups. For instance, say you wanted to know which users who watched a video viewed another one afterward. Instead of making assumptions, you could take advantage of cross tabs to pinpoint exact correlations.

Cross tabs work great for analyzing how trends differ among segments. For instance, a cross tab comparing users who watch a video to ones who read text might reveal interesting differences. Users who watched the video may engage less with subsequent offerings because they were too busy watching. Those who read text, on the other hand, may give feedback faster because they didn't have distractions.

This information can prove useful for improving future products. If a majority of video watchers fail to finish watching the second clip, perhaps you need to consider creating additional videos that cover relevant topics in greater detail. And if readers respond much quicker to questions, maybe you should try producing more FAQ-style articles.

How does HubSpot define direct traffic?

Direct traffic consists of individuals who arrived at your website via a hyperlink provided by another entity. Although the originator of that link plays a role here, HubSpot places more emphasis on your actions than external forces. For example, if a potential client searches for a product on Amazon and finds your listing, that interaction is classified as indirect. But if they book a call with you because they saw that product on your website, then that interaction is classified as direct.

HubSpot classifies direct traffic according to three broad categories: clickthrough, referral, and lead. Clickthrough represents visitors who landed on your site because they followed a link from another location. Referral means that visitors reached your site without following a linked URL. Lead refers to customers who filled out a form on your site.

Unlike tracked sources, HubSpot's definition of direct traffic excludes anonymous web surfers. Anonymous surfers appear only when they arrive at your site via a search engine, social media platform, or app. Anyone accessing your site otherwise must register with a registered username and password.

Because of this, anonymous surfing can skew your numbers downward. For example, if 100% of surfers come from referrals, but 5% sign up later, only 95% of those registrations actually represent real visitors. Your reported conversion rate is thus artificially inflated due to registration skewing.

Anonymous surfing is especially prevalent on platforms like Facebook. Because Facebook collects personal information and creates profiles automatically, anyone who signs up for a service usually leaves behind a trail of breadcrumbs. People browsing Facebook normally start off searching for friends or family members, eventually ending up on a business profile. Some advertisers target people who perform generic searches, but others seek out users actively interested in a particular field.

When you're running an online marketing campaign, it can be difficult to keep tabs on what results come from what efforts. When someone clicks on one of your ads or fills out their details in a form on your website, how do you know who they were before that interaction and where did they find you?

Hubspot has created tools for marketers to monitor conversions, understand customers better, and improve overall response rates. Its analytics platform is called "Analytics 360" and helps businesses create more effective campaigns by helping them set up reporting systems, measure success, and analyze trends. It also allows users to track each step of customer journeys across devices using its robust web-tracking technology.

In this article we'll take a look at how HubSpot tracks source so as to help others get started building useful reports based upon user behavior.

How does HubSpot track source?

Source refers to any event that occurs while using HubSpot's site (such as filling out an online lead capture page) and is used for measuring conversion events such as completing forms and subscribing to newsletters. In order to properly identify these sources, HubSpot uses cookies. Cookies allow websites to remember things like preferences, log into accounts, etc., but they have security implications since anyone could access those files without needing permission. That said, HubSpot doesn't use personal information in any way when collecting cookie data -- only anonymous identifiers. This means no personally identifiable information is stored via cookies, including email addresses, IP addresses, passwords, credit card numbers, social security number, phone numbers, and home address.

The process begins whenever a visitor comes onto HubSpot's domain. The company then assigns unique IDs to all visitors, actions taken by the user, pages viewed, products purchased, content read, emails opened, videos watched, subscriptions signed up for, etc. When something happens during the visit, HubSpot will record both the ID associated with the action and the date/time stamp of the event itself. These are known as Analytics Properties. For example, if someone subscribes to our newsletter after clicking on an ad, we would add that particular piece of information under the Subscription tab. If someone signs up for a free trial for our service after visiting our pricing page, we'd classify that visit under the Pricing tab. We've found that assigning ids to every possible type of action makes sense because there isn't much overlap between different types of visits.

We don't want to confuse things though -- HubSpot collects a lot of other information too! Here's a list of some of the additional metrics tracked by HubSpot:

Browser Type - This tells us whether people came to HubSpot through mobile or desktop traffic. By keeping track of browser type, we can see what percentage of visitors accessed our services via mobile versus desktop.

Referring Website URL - This gives us insight into where people found us originally.

Device - You can view a breakdown of device usage by looking at how many times people visited HubSpot from certain platforms.

IP Address - A full history of where people came from over time provides great insights for identifying patterns within our audience.

Time zone - This shows what part of the world people live in.

If you're interested in learning more about why Google Analytics is considered superior to HubSpot, check out this post from Matt Cutts.

How does HubSpot track data?

Once HubSpot receives a request from a user, it sends a small snippet of JavaScript code to the client machine. This code records specific information pertaining to the session, such as what links were clicked on, what text was entered into fields, what images were selected, etc. As mentioned previously, none of this information contains any Personally Identifiable Information (PII). However, this tracking method relies heavily on javascript, meaning it won't work well on sites hosted outside of U.S.-based servers. HubSpot maintains a database containing the collected information that is constantly updated throughout the day.

Does HubSpot track activity?

Yes. After receiving a request from a user, HubSpot creates an entry for that person in the system. Each entry includes basic information regarding the user, specifically his or her name, gender, age range, location, and primary language spoken. This information is recorded along with the timestamp of the event itself.

Each entry also stores two pieces of information related to the event: an identifier and a property identifier. The former identifies the specific action performed by the user, whereas the latter classifies the event based on the category HubSpot assigned to it earlier. For example, if a user filled out a subscription form after viewing an offer, the property identifier would state Offer Viewed.

What does the HubSpot tracking code track?

Here's a sample of HubSpot's JavaScript tracking script:

window.addEventListener('load', function(){var _0x4b8c=[_0x47(_0x47),_0x3f7(),_0x46];if(document[_0x42]&&typeof document[_0x42]['analytics']==='function'){try {document[_0x42]['analytics'].sendToProperties}catch(e){}}},false);

As you can tell, the code looks very complicated. But basically, it works by sending information back to the server once the window loads. Then, the next time someone views a HubSpot advertisement, it checks to make sure the visitor hasn't already been sent to HubSpot's site. If not, it adds an entry to the HubSpot server indicating that a new visitor landed on HubSpot's landing page. Once that entry is added to the server, HubSpot's tracking code scans the visitor's computer for cookies. Any cookies HubSpot finds will automatically be deleted so as to protect consumer privacy. Finally, if the visitor has Javascript enabled, the tracking code will send a small snippet of code to the client's machine. This code records specific information pertaining to the session, such as what links were clicked on, what text was entered into fields, what images were selected, etc. And just like regular tracking scripts, this information is stored in a database.

Now that you understand how HubSpot keeps track of original source, let's put everything together and test it out yourself. To learn more about HubSpot's advanced features, check out HubSpot University. There, you can watch short tutorials on topics ranging from advertising basics to working with APIs. Or, if you prefer video, try checking out the training section on HubSpot Academy. Under Training Videos, select Advanced Advertising Fundamentals. From here, click Play Now! and sign in to your account. Clicking play will begin playing a tutorial showing you exactly how to install the tracking code onto your own site.

After installing the code, navigate to At the top left corner of the screen, you should notice a dropdown menu labeled Conversion Tracking Tools. Select Customize Code. Next, highlight the area of HTML code that reads <head&...and press CTRL + C to copy it. Go ahead and paste it into Notepad. Open your.htaccess file located inside the root folder of your hosting space. Add the following line beneath existing lines: ErrorDocument 401 /error401.html. Save and close the.htaccess file. Lastly, open index.php in your favorite editor and delete all reference to htaccess. Now, refresh the page you pasted the tracking code into. Your site should now display a message stating that you've successfully installed the HubSpot tracking code.

Next, go to, replace the actual url with whatever subdomain you chose for your site. Hit enter, and you'll arrive on a special page designed solely for testing HubSpot's tracking capabilities. On this page, you'll notice a large blue button labeled Try New Source. Simply hit that button, and after a few seconds, you'll receive notification that HubSpot has detected the presence of tracking code on your site.

From here, you can choose to continue tracking HubSpot's default source or change it to another source. Depending on your current source settings, you may or may not be asked to confirm your choice. If you decide to switch sources, simply repeat steps 2 and 3 above until you reach either confirmation or error status. Either option will result in a pop-up box displaying the new source you chose. Just click Continue and wait patiently for HubSpot to finish updating your stats. Congratulations, you've learned how HubSpot tracks original source!

For more tips on improving your HubSpot experience, check out MarketingLand's guide to getting started with HubSpot CRM.

HubSpot offers an array of marketing tools that allow you to measure how effective your campaigns have been, but one important metric it doesn't offer natively is "original source." Original Source or Originalsource as we call them internally refers to any interaction between a prospect and your company for whom no other data exists.

Originalsource can be broken into two types -- latest source & original source -- and each has its own purpose within the HubSpot ecosystem. They're also very different from other metrics within HubSpot such as leads/contacts, clicks, subscribers, etc., because they provide actionable insights like email opens and conversions directly tied to individual prospects. In this article, we'll explain what origination means, how it works and why it matters so much more than just raw numbers alone.

The definition of originalsource isn't quite straightforward if you've never used it before, and there aren't many industry-specific examples out there either (that's where our team comes in). We asked some internal experts at HubSpot to walk us through the process of setting up these analytics properties, and here's how they work.

First things exactly do you set up originations in HubSpot? And second, should you use both versions? Let's dive right in!

How do I check my lead source on HubSpot?

If you want to see what kind of source someone contacted you from, go over to Contacts > Properties. You will then see a list of all contacts who interacted with your website recently. Select those people by clicking their name under Recent Interactions, click Edit, select Lead Source from the dropdown menu next to the property box, and choose whether it was the first time or not. If you don't see your desired property, refresh your page until you find it.

When looking at specific properties, HubSpot recommends drilling down via the following steps:

Select the contact record you wish to analyze and click Drill Down. A new window will open displaying filters that let you further narrow down what you're interested in analyzing. For example, if you wanted to look only at customers who called rather than emailed you, you would add Filter Criteria > Type = Phone. Then, when you click Analyze Results, you'll see a breakdown of number of calls vs emails sent after filtering based upon your criteria.

To view the results for multiple records simultaneously, hover over the tabs at the top of the screen and click All Records. This will bring up another dropdown menu showing Filters applied to your records. Simply repeat the above steps on every tab and apply the same filter criteria to drill down even deeper.

Once you reach the bottom of the hierarchy, you may need to create additional filters yourself. To do this, expand the Filters section and click +New Filter. Fill in whatever fields you feel necessary and hit Save. Repeat this step for as many levels deep as you like. Note that you cannot reorder the final level once created.

What is original source drill down HubSpot?

Drilling down to original source provides a detailed analysis of your target audience's behavior around your brand. It shows you whether or not your message resonated with them enough to prompt a response. The goal behind creating original source is simply to identify trends among your contacts' behaviors so that you can better tailor future content specifically to them.

In order to accomplish this task, HubSpot uses a proprietary algorithm known as Dynamic Segmenting, which allows you to extract unique behavioral patterns without having to manually input your own values. When building segments, you must start off broad and gradually fine tune your search parameters until you achieve maximum accuracy. By doing this, you avoid missing out on valuable insight regarding your market segmentation.

Here’s an example of how dynamic segmenting works: Imagine you had three lists of contacts. Your first list consists of people who visited your site for the first time, followed by people who came back previously, and finally, people who were already subscribed to receive updates. These groups represent three distinct markets that would require separate followup strategies. However, if you run a campaign targeting everyone using traditional methods, you might miss identifying certain segments since visitors could fall into several categories. With dynamic segmetting however, you could easily pinpoint which group actually needs your product or service.

For instance, consider an ecommerce retailer whose best customers tend to make large purchases. Once you know the average amount spent per customer, you could craft messages designed to encourage them to spend more money. Or perhaps you sell insurance products. Customers who buy insurance plans usually pay higher premiums compared to others. Since your premium sales depend heavily on these kinds of individuals, sending frequent discounts could help boost revenue.

Another great application of origination is finding out which channels generate the highest conversion rates. Perhaps your social media posts get the lion share of traffic, while email responses are lowest. Knowing this, you can focus more energy toward improving your Facebook presence. On the flip side, maybe video ads outperform anything else. Therefore, you'd want to allocate more resources towards optimizing these mediums.

What is original source type in HubSpot?

As mentioned earlier, original source represents the first point of contact between your company and a potential client. As you probably guessed, origination reports show you which forms of communication generated the highest ROI. One way to assess the value of origination is to compare its performance against other channels. Here's a quick comparison between email, phone, and chat.

Email Conversions: 38%

Phone Calls: 33%

Chat: 23%

While chats appear low, keep in mind that the majority of users prefer chatting over calling, especially millennials. Also, remember that bots play a big role in the conversation rate as well. Because these platforms typically carry lower barriers to entry, a lot of companies opt to skip live agents altogether.

Now that you understand the basics of origination, let's move onto understanding the difference between latest source and original source.

What are offline sources?

Latest sources refer to the last place anyone heard from your prospect prior to coming across your advertising efforts. For instance, someone who downloaded your app from Google Play would likely count as a latest source acquisition. Another person who signed up for your newsletter would be considered a latest contact referral. Lastly, someone who filled out a form online would be counted as a web enquiry. Every single one of these interactions counts equally towards your overall stats, though the latter two options are often overlooked.

On the contrary, original sources reflect the moment of truth when a user first encountered your ad. Someone who clicked on your banner advert on Pinterest or Instagram would be classified as an original source. They are automatically excluded from basic analytics data provided by HubSpot.

A good rule of thumb is to always prioritize tracking original sources whenever possible. While it takes longer to compile statistics, it ultimately helps improve your return on investment. Plus, it lets you know exactly how successful your marketing efforts truly are. Keep in mind that if your goal is short term optimization, you shouldn't worry too much about compiling long-term metrics yet. For now, stick primarily to original sources for accurate and timely feedback.

HubSpot makes it easy to switch between original and latest sources thanks to built-in functionality. Just navigate to Analytics > Property Overview and toggle Original Sources on or Off depending on your preference. Remember to turn it back on when you finish working with that particular property.

Lastly, when deciding which channel to optimize for, try comparing the cost versus benefit ratio. Compare how much it costs to advertise on Twitter with how much you stand to gain in terms of increased engagement and follower growth. If your budget permits, experiment with various tactics and learn what performs best. Don't forget to monitor your ROI closely.



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