Measure Your Blog’s Results in 3 Smart Ways

Do you feel sometimes you might be spinning your wheels ? Are you unsure if all the efforts your are putting into your blog and social media are getting your desired result ? In my post How to Find your Best Traffic as a Blogger, I went over what I look at in Google Analytics for measuring good traffic but now let’s take it a step further. If you have spent any time blogging some questions are likely to creep up like:

  • Are visitors engaged with my site ?
  • Are visitors clicking on my affiliate links?
  • How many people are downloading my freebie?
  • Are my twitter fans responding to my promotions? How about Facebook?
  • Which Sidebar Banners are getting the most clicks?
  • What pages converted visitors into a newsletter subscribe ?  A sale?

Smart Bloggers will know the answers to all of these questions.  Smart Bloggers figure out what’s working and what’s not then make adjustments.  In this post, I’ll show you 3 things you can do to monitor the behaviors and measure the actions of your visitors to assess whether you are getting your desired results.

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1. Track Events

See What Your Visitors Click

On top of witnessing which pages on your own site are performing well, it’s worthwhile to track your outbound link. Outbound links can give you a idea of what your audience is interested in. Also, if you have affiliate links with several different sites, it’s a good way to organize all your clicks throughs to see what programs are working best with your audience.

Monitor Your Downloads

Do you offer something to your visitors for free? Do you how many times it’s been downloaded? Should you do more or less?
Having this information is an good measure of interest so you can know if your time and energy is paying off.

Enable Event Tracking in Google Analytics

Google Analytics doesn’t track events by default, it requires some updates to the embed code.

For WordPress, you can setup the Google Analyticator Plugin and then enable event tracking with some simple settings.

Google Analyticator WordPress Plugin

Google Analyticator Tracking

 

Track Downloads with Download Monitor

For tracking downloads, I also recommend the Download Monitor which gives you a great snapshot of how your downloads are performing right inside WordPress.

Download Monitor WordPress Plugin

For tracking affiliate links specifically, I recommend Easy Affiliate Links. This plugin lets you create

Easy Affiliate Links WordPress Plugin

 

2. Track Conversions

Setup Goals with Google Analytics

Whether you want someone to purchase your eBook, sign up for an email or simply spend longer on your site, you can actually measure this with the use of Google Analytics goals. Probably the most common goal setup is for a destination to a Sales Confirmation Page or a Newsletter Signup Thank You Page which represents a conversion and the BEST way to measure results. To setup a new goal, go to the Admin section of Google Analytics.

Goal Setup Google Analytics

Once you’ve gone through the steps of setting up a goal, you will start to see data for that goal in your Reporting tab under your Conversions section.

Goal Reporting Google Analytics

With a good amount of data you can figure out where people came from and the path they took to accomplish your goal.

 

3. Track Campaigns

So Goals can show you the source of your traffic and even let you know what social media site sent them but if you are testing out different ads, tweets or banners on your website, you’ll need to setup a campaign to figure that out.

Essentially a campaign is a url with a whole bunch of variables that you set to identify the different links you send out.

Simply, fill out the fields in the URL Builder and use the generated url as the link you share.

It’s probably best to illustrate this with an example….

I have a landing page to subscribe to all updates for this #betterblog series. I have my goal setup (which is set to a thank you page) so now I want to see how many people are visiting that page and how many people convert. I share it to social media and I have it shared on my site in different places and I’d like to see which places on my site are getting the most clicks and are converting the best….

1. Create a Campaign URL

Here I am giving the builder my destination url and want to add variables to the url so I can distinguish that it came from my website’s menu link.

Better Blog Campaign Url

 

2. Check Campaign Results in Google Analytics

Only after I see some clicks do I see the campaign appear in Google Analytics under Acquisition.

Google Analytics Campaign

And I drill down to see how my menu link is doing!

Campaign Goal Conversion Google Analytics

So with those 3 ways, you can feel like you’re a badass blogger! For me, I know I feel a lot better about my efforts when I have a better handle on what marketing efforts are working, where my customers come from, what ON my site performs well and what partnerships are attractive to my visitors.  I encourage you to try it out!

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I’m a WordPress Web Designer & Developer with over 15 years of experience making websites (including eCommerce and membership websites). If you would like a custom website, please get in touch!