I normally work on creating my own content for you guys, but this week I wanted to try something a bit different. Whether you’re a professional marketer or a small business owner looking to better manage your business online, learning about dark social traffic can be essential to your growth. So for this week, I’m borrowing from writer Amanda DiSilvestro over at Salesforce to talk about this important topic.

measuring dark social media

What Is Dark Social?

Say the words “dark social,” and you might think that you’re going to be talking about something nefarious—but it’s quite the opposite.

Dark social refers to social media metrics that don’t have the typical source tracking information, meaning it can come from sources as varied as someone emailing a link to a story, someone providing a link through their own Facebook page, or someone browsing using a secure app.

And while you can’t track those metrics specifically, they’re still important to understanding both your customers and your social media postings. Dark social actually accounts for about 70 percent of referrals in traffic, so it clearly makes a big impact on your efforts. One way to understand them better is to understand how you can use Google Analytics to make sense of dark social metrics.

What parameters should you set up and how do you use the information? This graphic can help.

Click To Enlarge

Shining a Light on Dark Social Metrics: What You Need To Know

Via Salesforce

Tracking Your Dark Social Traffic

For the past couple of weeks, I’ve talked about the importance of social media analytics in your business -this is one reason why. See, the integrated metrics that you get from most networks are great, but if you want a full picture of what’s going on having custom analytics setup can be a valuable asset.

Remember, if you don’t have a clear picture of where your traffic is coming from, it’s impossible to know the best ways to improve your current processes. With these systems on your side, you’ll be able to stay on top of anything that comes your way.