Author: Helene Cue
It’s very tempting to start employing in-trend digital marketing techniques that guarantee success. However, in order to remain in control of your marketing efforts, you have to keep track of the metrics to actually make sure a campaign is successful as it seems. If you do not measure your marketing campaigns, you will never know what is working and what is not.
When we talk about marketing, content marketing is still the go-to strategy for most marketers. Survey of 99 firms showed that well over half of content marketers publish at least one piece a day. This strategy is so popular with businesses because it costs so much less than traditional advertising campaigns and, given the behavior of today’s consumer, can result in far more leads and conversion.
However, each digital venue used must be assessed for the effectiveness of that time and energy are placed right. Here are the metrics that can provide those assessments.
Advantages of Tracking Effectiveness
Some marketers believe that putting too much time and effort into tracking will take up valuable resources for actual campaigning. However, tracking is an indispensable part of each campaign and should be treated with equal importance as the creative side. Here are some of the main benefits of effectively tracking your marketing campaigns:
1. Increased understanding of visitors to your site
You might think you know who likes your content, but you can only be sure after you see the results of your campaigns and track visitors on your websites. If you go through a thorough tracking process, you might end up being very surprised at who reads your content and where they live.
Without having a deep understanding of your audience and their preferences, you won’t be able to tailor your future content to suit their taste.
2. Ability to focus where it matters
As a marketer and website administrator, you probably have your own ideas about which web pages on your site are the best. When you look at analytics, you will see an exact confirmation or rebuttal of your intuitive opinions.
By actually listening to the opinion of the audience portrayed through tracking metrics, you can dump those pages that don’t work, tweak those that are moderately successful and focus on your most successful pages.
3. Location of user “bottlenecks,” bounces, and cart abandonment
Every website has weak points: spots where users usually start feeling “meh” about the whole experience, abandon their carts and leave the website altogether.
Luckily, with tracking techniques, you can easily identify where your visitors get “stuck” or leave the site. When you have this information, you can pinpoint those web locations and focus on tweaking them.
4. Overall improvement of content on all platforms
Analytics and tracking can give you precious insight into how your content is doing, something that you definitely couldn’t identify on your own. Versatile metrics such as the bounce rate or average time spent on site show you where users like the quality of the content.
If you want to make sure that your content is up to par, you can use these services for outsourcing or improving your content:
- GrabMyEssay – find writers who can write content based on your specific instructions
- Grammarly – check the quality of your content; not only grammar and spelling, but also style, tone and vocabulary
- ProWritingAid – a tool similar to Grammarly that will show you the weak points of your text piece
- BestEssayEducation – a writing service website for outsourcing some of your content needs
- Readable – to check the readability of your posts (important for UX and SEO)
- Small SEO Tools – a collection of different online tools that will help you check for SEO blind spots and help you improve
Most Useful Metrics
Tracking is now easy through Google Analytics or other available marketing reporting tools. With advanced tools, you will have access to dozens of different user metrics. So, before you start analyzing and tweaking, you need to know what to watch and which metrics are not so relevant to your site. Here are several that are valuable to increase your understanding of your website traffic:
1. Total Conversion Rate
If your goal is to sell a service or a product (and it most probably is), the total conversion rate is one of the most valuable metrics out there. Instead of looking at particular conversion rates on individual CTAs and landing pages, the TCR will show you the combined amount of all types of conversions you have solicited.
2. Specific conversion Rates
Now, unlike the Total Conversion Rate, here is where you can get more specific and detailed. Within the specific conversion rate section, you can look at: subscriptions, provision of email addresses, downloads of information, whitepapers, purchases, etc.
3. Bounce Rate
Bounce rate is defined as a percentage of single-page sessions in the context of total visits to the site. In metrics, you can observe anything from the home page to landing pages and individual product pages.
“A high bounce rate doesn’t necessarily mean that your content is bad. It can also mean that you’re targeting the wrong audience, or that your posts are simply not as relevant to the topic (title). This causes users who find their way to your page to quickly abandon it. To avoid this, make sure you’re writing for the right people and actually providing the information you said you were going to give in the title”, says Marie Carrington, a web content writer at Studicus.
4. Number of visits – new and returning
A high rate of returning visitors is a great sign that you’re doing well – that your content is valuable, informative and interesting to read. At the same time, a low rate of new customers might signal that your marketing level is not where it should be: after all, great content will always easily attract new audiences if you push it with marketing.
5. Where visits are coming from
As a website owner, you definitely want to know how users are actually reaching your content. If you didn’t have tracking tools, you might think that, for example, your visits come primarily from social media, when in reality, the majority of your traffic is organic (coming from search engines).
6. Average time visitors spend on your website
This is also a valuable metric that shows basically how “addictive” your website is. Naturally, the more time users spend on your website, the higher your chances that they will purchase something or become a returning visitor. Google also highly values average time on sent when ranking websites in its search results.
7. Click-through rate on individual ads
If you’re running ads (whether it’s Google Adsense, other ad platforms or affiliate links), you have to know exactly how many people actually click on the ad after they see it.
Traffic by Channel
With Facebook traffic, you can track the growth of followers, most popular posts, click-throughs to landing pages and more.
For Instagram pages and posts, look at click-throughs by specific hashtags and searches via specific hashtags.
If you’re using Twitter, track your growth in following and click-throughs to your site or individual pages.
4. Organic Search
Analytics tools will show you how many visitors found you through search engines such as Google and Bing. In Google Analytics, you can actually see the search queries that brought your visitors to your website.
5. Paid Advertising, including PPC
It’s very important to track paid advertising results to deduce whether it’s cost-effective and whether you should tone it down or invest more.
6. Traffic from specific backlinks
External links to your website are precious and just like search engines, they can be a source of “passive” traffic for years.
Traffic by Device – PC or Mobile
The majority of your audience comes from a particular device (in recent years, this tends to be mobile). “Some writers think: why should I care whether they use a PC or mobile? Well, just take a look at two entirely different experiences your posts have on these two platforms. If the majority of your readers come from mobile phones, optimize your website to be mobile-friendly”, says Sasha Meyers, a content writer at TrustMyPaper.
When you’re running a website, you should never approach marketing and performance tracking in a chaotic way and let nature run its course. Each campaign should have specific KPI’s, and metrics must be analyzed per campaign and those established KPI’s.
Make sure you set SMART goals for each of your campaigns before they begin and use the results to tweak future ones.
- S – specific
- M – measurable
- A – achievable
- R – relevant
- T – time-defined
Helene Cue is a passionate writer and editor who explores a broad spectrum of topics that revolve around marketing and tech. She currently works as an in-house writer at WowGrade and as a content marketing specialist at SupremeDissertations. Her pieces are always captivating and informative.
Marketing Assistant UK @myposeo