About this time last year I wrote this blog for Business 2 Community. While producing engaging and shareable content is key, optimizing your content through the use of go-to tools (like Google Analytics) is equally important for sustaining your overall strategy. Take a look below and let me know your thoughts!
So you created a blog and have been posting frequently. The good news is that you’re reaping the many benefits of your blogging efforts, from increased site traffic and lead conversion to bolstered brand awareness. But as any good marketer knows, you always have to be 10 steps ahead in the game.
That means digging deeper into data to improve and fine-tune your strategy. In other words, taking a look at how your blog is performing (how many people are visiting your blog, clicking on certain pieces of content, etc.) to learn what you should do differently. After all, what’s the good of blogging if you’re unsure of how your strategy is performing? To get fully value out of any content strategy, you must extract key insights to make necessary changes and improvements. A go-to tool for doing so is Google Analytics.
Maybe you’ve heard of Google Analytics but have no clue what it is or how to use it (a good primer can be found here). However, if you’ve been considering Google Analytics—or currently use it—here are three things you can begin doing today to either get started or to take things to the next level:
- Connect with Google Webmaster Tools: Google Webmaster Tools provides data and diagnostics to ensure your pages are “Google friendly.” For those looking to graduate to a more thorough tool, Google Webmaster tools allows users to check their site’s “health” for issues detected by Google; gain an even deeper understanding of their search engine traffic and how users are landing on their sites; and, of course, modify their pages as needed to ensure they appear high up in Google search results. Google Webmaster Tools is free and only takes a few minutes to set up. Learn more here.
- Create a dashboard: If you want to make any positive change, you should start by creating smaller goals that play into your larger objective. For example, if you’re trying to lose 50 lbs, a smaller goal could include never skipping breakfasts to avoid overeating later in the day. To reap the benefits Google Analytics offers, compartmentalize and prioritize your goals. For example, what do you want to see most from your investment in Google Analytics, and what steps must you take to get you there? Define what is most important to you and why—otherwise you will be swimming in a sea of data with no direction. To help you navigate potentially murky waters, create a dashboard so that you can prioritize those goals that are most important to your overall mission (i.e. bounce rates, page views).
- Account Management: If you haven’t created a Google Analytics account yet, make sure it is connected to a company email that is easily accessible to all designated employees. This way, in the event an employee leaves the company, his or her email doesn’t go out the door with them if it was used to create the account. If this is the case, you will unfortunately have to set up an all new account—and begin analyzing all new data. Also, appoint two accounts to ensure that all information can be appropriately accessed and used—one that is “read only” so that certain users can only view data and not change it.
The bottom line is that data is massively important for amplifying your content marketing efforts. If you don’t have Google Analytics, there’s no better time than now to get on board to start making immediate improvements to your strategy.