This article is about Universal Analytics properties, which will stop processing data on July 1, 2023 (October 1, 2023 for Analytics 360 properties). If you haven't already, start using a Google Analytics 4 property.

Identify New Placement Candidates from Referring Sources

Your users are likely browsing other websites before visiting your site. This analysis will help you identify other domains—and specific pages on those domains—that are driving new clients or converting customers to your site.


  1. Navigate to Traffic Sources > Sources > Referrals.
  2. Select the Comparison view from the top right of the table.
  3. Use the drop-down menu in the middle column to sort by Sessions and identify the sources that drive the most traffic to your website.
  4. In the drop-down menu in the right-hand column, select Pages/Session to compare each source to the site average. A higher than average number of Pages/Session may indicate that source is referring higher quality, more engaged traffic.
  5. Select Avg. Session Duration from the drop-down menu, and note high performing sources.
  6. Under the Explorer tab, select a Goal Set or Ecommerce. Different metrics appear in the table based on this selection.
  7. Stay in the Comparison view. Use the drop-down menus in the table to compare different conversion-based metrics, such as Goal Conversion Rate or Ecommerce Conversion Rate, to the site average. Note high performing sources.
  8. In the Source column, click a source to view its Referral Path, and determine if you want to more specifically target any placement URLs.


Include high performing referral sites in your Google Ads managed placement campaigns if they are in the Google Display Network (GDN).  (Check to see if these placements are in the GDN by using Google Ad Planner.)

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