‹ Back to Knowledge Base home


For security reasons and to make email sending even faster, we have changed the way we populate variable tags and track links in emails.

**Any URLs that are inserted via variable tag alone will no longer be tracked.**

Pardot ONLY rewrites links that begin with http:// to make them trackable. If your full URL is being populated in your email using a variable tag, the ‘http://’ portion is not visible when the email is sent, so the link will not be rewritten and tracked.

Example: If you are using the variable tag %%whitepaper_url%% to populate a full URL in an email dynamically (based on the value for the prospect field “whitepaper_url”), the link will still work for recipients, but it will no longer be tracked by Pardot.

What do I do to make it work?

  1. Update your prospect fields that include a full URL to only include the latter part of the link.  Example: Use “whitepaper_url” rather than http://www.pardot.com/whitepaper_url. Make sure you are only passing the latter part of the URL through your forms if you’re capturing the data with hidden fields.
  2. Update your emails to add the first part of the URL (i.e. http://www2.yourdomain.com/) in front of variable tags that should be URLs. Example: http://www2.pardot.com/%%whitepaper_url%%

Note: The value in the prospect field cannot contain forward slashes (paths) as they will be URL encoded when the link is re-written and be displayed as %2F.  The field value should include only the very last part of the URL (e.g. file location).

Example: if http://www2.pardot.com/faqs/emails/download/whitepaper.pdf is the final URL you want to pull into your email you would put http://www2.pardot.com/faqs/emails/download/%%custom_field%% into your email and populate the field with just the file name whitepaper.pdf

Additionally, variable tags can be used to pass parameters to URLs that will be rewritten when your email is sent. For example, the final URL you want to be in your email is http://www2.pardot.com/faq/emails/download?file=whitepaper, you’d put http://www2.pardot.com/faq/emails/download?file=%%custom_url%% and populate the custom field with just the parameter whitepaper.

Why did we make this change?

We mainly made this change for security reasons to help prevent malicious content from being included in emails (example: if someone tries to pass a link to malicious content through a form with someone else’s email submitted).

This change also helps make email sending even faster! Your list emails, autoresponder, and nurturing emails will be queued and sent much quicker.