How are Marketing Channels set for non-first hits of a visit?



This is one thing that has always stumped me about Marketing Channels.

Marketing Channels are applied with every hit. And channels like Paid Search, Display, etc. are usually configured where the Query Parameter is set with some value. So I understand how the first hit of a visit would be able to be categorised under one of these Marketing Channels.

But what about the 2nd, 3rd, 4th...nth hits? These hits don't have the Query Parameter any more, so how would AA know that they should "belong" to the previously set Marketing Channel?

Adobe Analytics Analytics Marketing Channels

Accepted Solutions (1)

Accepted Solutions (1)



Hi, @yuhui-bc 

As @Andrey_Osadchuk noted, the value persists much like an eVar, but with two (2) allocation methods rather than one (1): First Touch and Last Touch.

The broader answer to this question is... It depends on how you've configured Marketing Channel Processing Rules for your report suite. 

For every hit, Adobe runs the call through your Marketing Channel Processing Rules. If any one of the rules finds a match, the new channel is set, and the Last Touch channel is updated. However, if none of the rules match (no query parameters or other relevant values), no change is made and the existing Last Touch channel persists.

@evolytics_brian, I should note that @marc_richard with your group is responsible for aiding me in my understanding and also helping our company with setting up the majority of our Marketing Channel Processing Rules. In fact, @yuhui-bc, I highly recommend Evolytics when it comes to understanding Marketing Channels or Campaign Tracking if you're ever in need of a good consulting company.

Anyway, yes, this is spot-on. The other important thing to note about Marketing Channel processing rules is that they are NOT retroactive like Classification rules. They are effective the day they are activated and anything that has been processed beforehand will remain in the channel where it already is. That has been my one frustration with them. The second part is making sure you understand which rules will overwrite and which won't. You also have to be absolutely sure which ones are going to execute and in which order. This is something you need to discuss with the business and make sure you understand the exact business questions you're trying to answer when you set up your Marketing Channels. Remember that your campaign tracking, which can include everything from SMS to Push to Email to even Paid Search and Display Ads and in-store QR Codes on flyers, will affect your Marketing Channels and how everything flows into your reporting. I know I'm hitting you with more than your original question, but this topic tends to be a can of worms. 😉

You are too kind, @jeff_bloomer. Thank you! But, yes, Marc is awesome, and we are fortunate to be surrounded by a caring, passionate, brilliant team of analysts.

Answers (3)

Answers (3)




I presume this should work similarly to eVars. Once a new marketing channel is set, it persists unless a new value is set.



Marketing channels variables persist and are also checked for every hit. Once they're set on first hit of the visit, that value continues to persist unless overwritten by a new value on any further hit.

For example:

Hit 1  : A visit starts with Paid search.   MC = Paid

Hit2  : Next page of web site    , MC = Paid     // since value is persisting

~~Now user goes to social media and then clicks on a link to land on the same website. It'll be considered as same visitor.~~

Hit 3 : MC = Social     // channel is overwritten with new value.


Does this help?



Every hit checks for a Marketing channel processing rule. If the hit matches the condition of the rule Last Touch would get updated. If the hit does not meet any processing rule old value set for that visitor will persist.

If the visitor is new, does not have First and lat touch set and hit does not meet the criteria of any rule that hit will go under None.