Content Marketing Strategies
Just putting work into content marketing is not enough. It is also important to make sure all your effort is paying off! To make this possible, we’ve put together a guide on the essential content marketing metrics you should monitor.
The average engagement time
The first of the content marketing metrics you should monitor is your audience’s average engagement time with your content and site in general. This is crucial since it reveals whether or not your content is doing its job once you get people onto your site. After all, your goal is not just to get people to click on the links to your site but to, ideally, keep them there and engaged. This lets you achieve the whole purpose of your marketing: getting them to convert into a customer. The longer your average engagement time is, the better. However, do note that you should not just gauge the effectiveness of pages by engagement time. Properly take into account the complexity and length of blog posts whose statistics you are checking before making any decisions that will impact your approach to content.
The number of unique site visitors you get
The number of unique site visitors you get should be considered one of the essential content marketing metrics you should monitor. This is because a large number of unique visitors shows that your marketing is doing what it’s supposed to: increasing your outreach and bringing in new audiences. When you notice the number of unique visitors increases, you should take the time to properly analyze what contributed to this, too. This will let you better craft a unique approach to content marketing that appeals to your own target audiences. For example, some audiences might better respond to PPC ads, some to social media marketing, and some to email marketing. Conversely, if you notice your number of unique site visitors dropping, you’ll be able to quickly reverse whatever recent changes to your marketing strategy you have made. And, hopefully, fix the damage they’d done before you lose your audience!
The number of regular readers you have
Just because we just discussed how important the number of unique site visitors is, doesn’t mean that the number of regulars you have is less important. In fact, for some businesses, it can even be more important than just racking in new visitors. As the experts from moversdev.com point out, this statistic is especially important to businesses that don’t have a lot of ways to properly build a permanent customer base. Movers, construction companies, packers, and similar businesses simply cannot count on customers needing their services often. As such, it’s easy for their customers to ‘drift away.’ They can minimize the chances of this happening by relying on content marketing. And this is why it’s important for them to know whether or not their efforts are bearing fruit! Of course, even businesses that have frequent contact with their customers find this metric useful.
The average number of comments your content is generating
Engaging with your customers has always been important. Without a proper communication channel between you, it’s very easy to miss out on a host of useful info and chances to further your brand’s image. As such, the average number of comments your content gets is an important content marketing metric for you to monitor. Comments also show just how well your ideal audience is actually taking to your content. If you get a ton of comments, that means your content is generating interest, and your marketing is a success. Even if the comments are not great at the start, they still provide valuable insight into how you can improve and eventually win over the favor of your readers. So, if possible, you should make it easy and convenient for people to comment on your blog posts.
Most popular site content
The reason why content popularity is among content marketing metrics you should monitor is simple: you can quickly learn exactly what your audience wants from you. By checking your site data for the most visited pages, you’ll quickly be able to figure out the type of content and format that your potential customers react to the best. From there, you can either try to pander to their preferences or you can try to make your other content more appealing by altering it. Both decisions have their own pros and cons since the former lets you capitalize on your current advantages, and the latter has the potential to bring in new audiences. It comes down to your preferences and what you feel your content marketing team can handle. Of course, if you are doing great, it’s typically best not to rock the boat.
Backlinks followed to and from your site
Backlinks are practically the lifeblood of your business during its early days. And even once your business takes off, maintaining quality backlinks, both to and from your site, is extremely beneficial. Especially if you are partnering with businesses that can constantly funnel new customers your way. This is why paying attention to backlinks and whether they’re actually doing their job is important. It’s relatively easy to track the number of people who visit your site through specific links. And this will give you all the insight you need to gauge whether you want to continue or break off your partnership with them. At the same time, note that the SEO of your backlinked partners affects your own. So, it’s also smart to check their web statistics from time to time. It’s better to lose some of the benefits of their backlinks than to ruin your SEO.
Your site’s bounce rates
‘Bounce rate’ is a relatively misunderstood term since it’s widely used to refer to people clicking out of your website. However, the actual meaning is that people close your website immediately after opening it. In other words, they dislike what they see enough to decline to give you a chance. For obvious reasons, this is extremely bad. Even if your content is great, it never gets to do its job, and its effectiveness plummets. If you notice that the bounce rates of your pages are high, the culprit is typically easy to narrow down. And it’s almost always your site design. Badly designed sites have compatibility issues, their menus are messy, it’s hard to read the content, etc. So, even if the goal is very specific, such as increasing user engagement on a moving company website, those movers can improve user interaction by improving their site design!
Your subscriber numbers and what content generates them
Getting people to subscribe to your mail or other notifications and promotional content is extremely important. It is one of the best sources of leads you can possibly get, and it’s in your best interest to boost your subscriber count. The tricky part is, of course, motivating them enough to click that subscribe button. This is why it’s crucial for you to track content pages that people subscribed to you from. After all, they are likely to contain the best calls to action, convincing arguments to subscribe to, or content so good that they feel compelled to do it purely for the sake of getting to see more. This will give you the knowledge you need to improve your marketing further. And, hopefully, win over a ton of new subscribers who will become true customers of your business.
The number of shares your pages get
Here’s an interesting reminder: few marketing methods are as convincing as people actively choosing to share your content. You are much less inclined to click on an ad or a blog link when it’s ‘forced’ on you by marketing. However, if your friend or family member shares and praises it on social media, you’ll probably check it out. So, it is important for a business to include share numbers among content marketing metrics you should monitor. You should also make it as convenient as possible to actually share your pages. Having an embedded ‘share’ button or something similar is better. Especially since that lets you track the number of shares you get much more conveniently.
The ‘sources’ of your site’s visitors
We have more or less alluded to this several times so far, but the ‘source’ of your page views is extremely important. You need to know exactly where most of your audience is coming from! Are they visiting your site because of your ads? Are they using links you posted on your social media? Maybe you got a high-profile share some time ago, and a lot of your recent traffic has been through it? What about the effectiveness of your organic traffic and your efforts to optimize your SEO? By knowing exactly where your views are coming from, you get info on which of your content marketing methods are working. From there, it is trivial to cut back on the funding to the ones that underperform. And, of course, redirect that funding to high achievers. Alternatively, you’ll know which marketing methods need improvement, though this can be costly.
Conversions achieved through content
It is common to embed hyperlinks into your content leading to items or services on sale. Even if you don’t do this, tracking down the ‘entry point’ of your customers to your site is relatively simple. From there, you’ll be able to gauge which content encourages people to become customers rather than just stay on your blog and read. The reason this is one of the content marketing metrics you should monitor is that this data will be immensely helpful when trying to optimize your website for conversions. By analyzing successful pages, you learn the phrases, wording, and calls to action which are most effective for your audience. This will also impact your wider marketing efforts since you can relatively easily incorporate them there.
Your content’s keyword rankings
It is only natural that keyword ranking is important when discussing content marketing. For organic traffic, keyword ranking is king. This is because high ranking also means that more people will get your site and blog pages as their first few results on Google search. Lacking keyword rankings will easily reveal that there are problems with your SEO. This, in turn, will let you know that it’s time to pay more attention to SEO when writing your content. If you are not sure you can do it on your own, consider hiring blog writers to assist your business operations! That’s a better option than over-optimizing or just leaving your SEO to suffer.
The popularity of old content
Another one of the content marketing metrics you should monitor is, interestingly enough, the popularity of your old content. The reason for this is simple: ‘bad’ content hurts your SEO, and even if your content used to be top of the line and was completely optimized for SEO, SEO guidelines change. And with them, changes the effectiveness and outreach of your old content. Even if something used to be the ‘correct’ way to do SEO, it might be completely harmful nowadays, and you’ll lose your ranking for those pages. In other words, your organic traffic to these pages will vane. And you’ll be alerted to this by paying attention to the number of views your old content gets! This will let you respond to the problem in a relatively timely manner, and old content takes relatively few tweaks to get updated, too!
Working on content marketing metrics you should monitor
Now that you are familiar with the essential content marketing metrics you should monitor remember that tracking them is not enough. It takes a lot of time and hard work to fix the problems that these metrics reveal. So, don’t become discouraged and give up too early! It is always possible to improve your website, and we are sure you will succeed.
Frequently asked questions about content marketing metrics
Q: Where can I find these metrics?
A: Most of the information you need can be found on your site’s dashboard. The specifics depend on your hosting provider, but the info will always be there. If you can’t find it on your own, simply shoot your host a quick email. For info on your competitors or other sites, you can find software such as SEMrush and Ahrefs that generates the metrics for you.
Q: Can I improve my content quickly?
A: Yes! It’s easy to read up on good SEO practices, and as long as you use a good editing program, you’ll even catch grammatical and semantic errors quickly.
Q: Is hiring blog writers and other outside experts to improve my site’s engagement, SEO, and other metrics worthwhile?
A: The answer is almost always yes. You can do some tasks on your own, and you can learn a lot from the experts you hire and by relying on your in-house teams. However, SEO and content creation tend to change quickly, and unless you have dedicated experts on your team, you’ll occasionally need help.
Q: I’ve put a lot of effort into my SEO. Why am I not seeing any improvements in my organic traffic?
A: SEO takes time to do its job. SEO progress is measured in weeks and months since Google first needs to crawl the pages, properly rank them, start recommending them, etc. Every SEO business that guarantees results within days is a scam that either uses bots, unpopular keywords, or just falsified data.
Q: Is it worth it to work on really old content?
A: This depends on the content. Suppose the topics themselves are old and completely outdated, such as instructions for programs no one uses anymore. In that case, it’s sometimes better to just delete them or remove access to the pages rather than continue to update them.
Q: Do I need to keep checking my metrics all the time?
A: No! Even if it feels like you should, metrics like SEO take time to change. You can comfortably check them just once or twice a week. Or, if you have a set release schedule for your content, as you should, you can just check a day after your newest releases.
Q: What can I do to improve my bounce rates?
A: Improve the quality of your content, such as grammar or formatting errors. Fix any problems with your web design. Consider adding exit popups to lure back leaving visitors. And finally, make sure your ads are properly targeted and appear for people actually likely to stay on your site.