Source of search term used in a paid search visit

Last updated: January 29, 2019

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.

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

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. It's possible that Google will encrypt the search data, in which case this value will not be present. If this value not present, you will see the visit sub-categorized as Content network (Adsense or other)