Source of search term used in a paid search visit

Last updated: January 15, 2019

Marketing Hub Professional, Enterprise

Applies to:

Marketing Hub
Professional, Enterprise
Legacy Marketing Hub Basic

After a visit is categorized as a Paid Search visit, HubSpot looks at the referring site, in particular the value passed in the q= parameter to determine what was the search term the contact used to find your site.

  • In your HubSpot account, navigate to Reports > Analytics Tools.
  • Select Traffic Analytics.   
  • In the Sources tab, locate the data table below the chart visualization. 
  • In the Paid Search row, click the number in the New contacts row.


  • In the right pane, select a contact.
  • On the contact record, in the About card, click View all properties.
  • Search for the contact property First Referring Site. This contact property contains the contact's referring site.

Within the parameters of the referring site, the q= parameter details the search term the contact used to find your site.

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There may be instances when the referring site does not provide such information.

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If the q= parameter isn't present in the first referring site, HubSpot will next look for the utm_term value in the URL to determine the keyword used. If this is not present, you will see the visit sub-categorized as Content network (Adsense or other).