Blog Analytics That Matter
If you’re not tracking the right metrics, you’ll never know if your content strategy is working for you
- Your brand identity is being reinforced by the content visitors are consuming, so you need to know what they want.
- The more content a prospect consumes, the more likely they are to become a customer.
- The average blog reader must return 3.15 times before you can expect them to become a customer.
Too much information isn’t just something you get bombarded with by an oversharing friend; it’s easy to get TMI from your own blog’s analytics data. Connect your blog to measurement tools like Google Analytics, SEMrush, HubSpot – or even a CMS plugin like Yoast – and BOOM! It’s a tsunami of data.
You shouldn’t ever be at a loss for data, but you could be itching to know to extract to make actionable decisions. Especially when some metrics might be pointing to success, and you’re not seeing any sales to justify it. Consider this scenario: your top blog post snagged 200,000 visits last month.
Big deal. Looking beyond that analytic triumph visits tells you:
- 198,800 left within 15 seconds of the page loading.
- Of those who stayed, only 130 viewed another page on your website.
- Just 24 visitors converted.
Break out the Champagne if all you care about is clicks. Most marketers care about more. Content – such as your blog – is what accompanies prospects along the buyer’s journey. Measuring its effectiveness requires a deeper and specific look at the metrics. Here’s what matters.
Don’t fret if the acronym isn’t ringing a bell. In this case, it stands for Consumption, Engagement, and Quality. The analytics you collect should fall into one of these three categories. With this data, you’ll be able to gain insight into what’s working by tracking patterns and trends.
You are what you eat. In this case, your brand identity is being reinforced by the content visitors are consuming. It’s why Pageviews play an overall important role.
You can use it to determine how many people saw your post within a selected timeframe. Big numbers here – especially if they’re sustained – tell you that the subject resonates with people visiting your website.
But let’s bounce back to our scenario. Digging deeper, past an impressive pageview metric, might tell you a different story. Lots of people came with a certain expectation that was not delivered. They were in and out in a flash.
It’s why Average Time on Page helps you gain a better understanding of the macro metric of Pageviews.
How long should someone remain on your blog? Let’s say your blog is 1,000 words in length. We read between 200 to 250 words a minute, so it should take a reader at least four minutes to make it down to your final wrap-up (it’s a call to action, right?).
Consequently, your blog posts aren’t connecting with readers if Average Time on Page doesn’t correspond to the calculated average time it should take to read them.
Are visitors checking out the rest of your website once they’ve read your blog post? You’ve got an engaged prospect when you’re able to measure that they’re visiting more than once and consuming more than what they initially came to read.
These metrics are measured by Average Pages Per Session and Returning Visitors. You can increase these metrics by suggesting additional content in callouts throughout your blog posts.
Tracking social media referrals can help you determine which blog posts resonate with audiences on specific social media platforms. This can help you determine where you want to invest in paid posts.
An increase in one or both of these metrics is encouraging because the more content a prospect consumes, the more likely they are to become a customer – or at least feel comfortable enough to convert and provide you with contact information.
If the Average Pages Per Session analytic remains low for a post, it might mean that your CTA isn’t compelling. Change it. Measure more. Or, increase the number of internal links to help visitors see that you are a valuable source of educational content.
Here’s why paying attention to the analytics for Returning Visitors is important: The average blog reader must return 3.15 times before you can expect them to become a customer.
You can find this information if you use Google Analytics. First, click on “Audience.” Then look for “Cohort Analysis.” You’re able to see the percentage of visitors who return each week as you drill down into the data.
Alas, no column tells you which of your blog posts are kicking it out of the ballpark. The closest you might come to this is Average Time on Page.
It can give you one side of the equation. While this metric can’t show engagement, it gives you an indication that your blog content is being read.
But, what’s contributing to this readership level? Your content likely doesn’t play a one-note samba. You’ve got blog posts featuring different types of graphics. Some might be infographics or contain video. A blog post might have a certain type of CTA depending on its relationship with the buyer’s journey or your sales funnel.
These blog post features or characteristics can impact every other metric. This data has to be cross-referenced against the analytics you collect.
It’s the final step of the analysis, the one that helps you determine that your readers love how-to posts with close-up photos that culminate with an offer to sign up for a webinar.
The analytics help you select the most effective ingredients for blog posts that capture and convert.
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