If you’re blogging for your business, you’re probably also measuring the success of your efforts in tools like Google Analytics.
As you’ve no doubt found, however, measuring the success of your blog isn’t as easy as it sounds because there are so many different metrics you can consider. If you wanted to delve into all of them you probably wouldn’t have all that much time left for actual blogging!
Of course, there’s no harm in being thorough, but if you’re pressed for time there’s no harm in sticking to the important ones either.
The metrics below are what we keep an eye on to know how this blog is going – use it to help you whittle down your list.
Having a look at the number of people who visit your blog is always a good place to start.
While it’s always fun to look at the the number of visitors to the blog overall, there are two quick-win metrics to pay attention to:
a) number of visits to each individual post.
It’s better to know how each individual piece of content is performing or underperforming, as this helps you to get a clearer picture of how your blog is doing overall. After all, even having 10000 visitors a day is no good if they’re only reading one post.
While you’re reviewing individual posts, it helps if you’ve noted the type of content promotion you did on each one, and any other reasons you think that particular post did well or did badly.
b) Your top 5 blog posts (judged by number of visits)
Looking at all your best pieces together like this helps you to see what they have in common. By identifying what works repeatedly, you can be pretty sure it will work again in future.
This is arguably the one true measure of a blog’s success.
If a blog is generating leads – via any of your lead generating mechanisms on the page, or if visitors visit the blog before converting – then you can consider it pretty successful.
Look at the goal flow report in Google Analytics to get an idea of a converter’s journey through your content. Can you identify which pieces of content triggered the most conversions?
It generally takes more than one blog article for a person to develop an understanding of your expertise and credibility within your industry.
That’s why, ideally, you want plenty of loyal readers. A loyal reader is far more likely to convert – and is therefore far more valuable – than 100 people who only visit once.
Measuring the number of subscribers & returning visitors is the simplest way to determine reader loyalty.
The number of returning visitors show that you’re consistently producing good content, and the number of subscribers indicates the same thing, but on an even deeper level.
If your subscriber & returning visitors numbers are up, you can be pretty sure you’re on to a good thing – keep it up!
The number of inbound links ‘won’ is another true measure of blog success (provided they are good-quality links).
The benefits that come with inbound links abundant from an SEO perspective, but from a content perspective it’s a good way to measure the quality of your content.
After all, when people link to you it’s a sign that your content is offering something so uniquely valuable that they want to share it on their own website.
This is another clear indication that people are liking your content.
A post that’s getting plenty of social media attention has obviously struck a chord that resonates with people – and it’s a good idea to see if you can figure out what that is and why.
If you’re getting a lot of likes and shares you can generally be pretty sure that you’ve done a good job.
In summary, if you’re pressed for time and want a quick ‘n dirty way to tell how well your blog is performing, have at look at the following:
If you track how your blog performs according to these metrics over time, you’ll end up with a pretty well-rounded and accurate idea of whether or not your blog is a success – without having to spend hours in analytics.