Content is the core of your social media marketing strategy, in which case, your blog stands as your great investment. Some people may think blogs have already taken a backseat with the rise of social media marketing, but it’s actually the opposite. Social media marketing consultant Chris Brogan says blogs are your social media outpost because they have the content drives social media conversations.
Your blog positions your brand as an industry thought-leader, but more importantly, it educates your readers and turns them into subscribers. To make sure your blog only provides quality content out there, you need to keep track of your blog’s performance to know which areas you might need to improve on.
We’ve compiled a list of the top five metrics you should track to gauge the performance of your blog.
1. Unique and Returning Visitors
One of the top metrics that you need track is the number of unique visitors you’re getting. Getting unique visitors is good news – it means more people are finding your blog and reading your content. However, you also want to ensure that these unique visitors return to your blog and get converted into subscribers. To increase your committed subscribers, make sure that you provide original, valuable and engaging content. The placement of your RSS/subscribe button is also important.
2. Visit duration
This refers to the length of time that your visitors spend on your blog. While a shorter visit duration doesn’t necessarily equate to poor performance (they might regularly visit your site and only skim through your posts), you’d still want your readers to spend more time on your blog and actually read your content.
3. Referrals and organic traffic
Know where your visitors are finding your blog. Keeping track of this metric will let you know which of your marketing efforts are succeeding and which you might still need to work on. Are you getting more referrals from Twitter than LinkedIn? Then perhaps, you need to tweet more often because that’s where most of your audience are. Similarly, you also want to keep track of the organic traffic that you’re getting from search engines. This will give you an insight which keywords your visitors are using which leads to your content, which in turn, can help you work further with your SEO.
4. Social Signals
Social signals is any social media activity which links to your blog. Facebook likes and shares, retweets, pins--these may all look like vanity metrics but the thing is, this is how your content gets around. More so, social signals affect your site's authority and search engine ranking. When people are sharing your content, it means they find your post useful and therefore see you as an authority in your niche. So check out which of your posts garnered more social activity than the others & consider making more of these types of posts.
5. Number of Links
Remember, one important purpose of blogging is to rank better in search engines. Google sees a link as a “vote” for authority, particularly those links coming from authority sites. The more links you have, the higher your rankings will be. We like using Moz’s Open Site Explorer for this purpose.
6. Email Subcribers
You may have a general picture of where your readers are coming from, but you want to get to know them more. You want to know their names. More specifically, you want to know their email addresses. See how many people subscribe to your blog and make it your goal to keep growing your mailing list.
7. Top content
Keep an eye on which of your blog posts are doing well. You can determine this by looking at which post attracted the most page views, social shares, and comments. There are a lot of available website analytics tools in the market that could help you extract the blog insights that you need.
Knowing your top content will give you an insight on which topics interest your readers the most. Use this to your advantage to make sure your content stays relevant and valuable at all times.
By keeping track of these content marketing metrics, improving your blog should come easy. Putting a great investment on your blog is one way to amp your marketing strategy, but what good will it do when it doesn’t mean your business goals? Know your audience well and keep them engaged with your content.