If you’re producing digital content for your website or social media, then you want to know whether it’s working or not! Here’s a run down of metrics that you should be keeping an eye on.
Why do you need to know about digital marketing metrics?
Unlike offline marketing such as adverts and flyers, digital marketing offers businesses a plethora of in-depth insights into how effective their marketing efforts really are. With every post, like, share, follow or comment data is created that you can use to extend your reach and increase engagement with your brand.
Whether you’re looking to grow your business through organic or paid digital marketing there are a number of key metrics that you really need to know. In this post we’ll be looking at metrics that you can access for free, either via your social channels or via Google Analytics, and because they’re free, there’s no excuse not to be using them!
Website and behaviour
This section looks at how people are behaving on your website. All the information that you need can be found in Google Analytics, if you don’t already have an account set up, make your way over there now and get it done.
The total number of views a single page has had for any given time period. It’s a pretty basic stat but useful all the same as you can measure/ compare how your pages rank against each other.
If you find a page that stands out as particularly high ranking, or indeed low ranking, it can be an indicator to have a look at what might be working well, or not so well.
Average page time
A measure of how engaging a page is.
If you find that a page has a low avergae page time, it may mean that the content isn’t engaging people. Alternatively, if you’ve created a great blog post or ecommerce page, you’d expect to see that users are spending more time on there.
The bounce rate is a measure of who leaves your site after only viewing one page. Whilst this is a useful indicator of the level of engagement, it can vary depending on your website.
If you have an ecommerce site you’d be looking for a lower bounce rate than a blog-based site. With an ecommerce site you’d expect that users would look at multiple pages before making a purchase, with a blog site you could very well see higher bounce rates due to users finding the information they were looking for and then leaving.
The behaviour flow section of Google Analytics gives you an awesome visual picture of how your users are behaving on your site. It shows you the pages that your visitors are looking at along with the drop off rate. Identifying pages with a higher drop off rate can help drive a higher conversion rate.
This shows you where your users have come from, whether that is direct, social or search. This tool is great for planning content and marketing strategies, if you know the majority of your audience is coming from social then you can focus on producing great content for that channel.
New vs. Returning visitors
Are you looking to reach new users or generate new or more potential leads? If that’s the case then you want lots of new users on your site. After all, each new user is a potential sale for you.
If you’re trying to build a community, have a blog site or engagement is key for you, then you’ll be looking for returning visitors and building a loyal audience.
In an ideal world you’ll want an even balance of new and returning visitors to your site!
Social channels offer a great opportunity to get your brand or message out there, both through paid advertising and through organic reach. This section explains some of the key metrics that you’ll be wanting to keep an eye on. In most cases these metrics are all readily available in the analytics sections for the major social channels.
Each time your post appears on a feed it is classed as an impression, it is merely the number of times that that specific post was displayed, and is not a measure of someone interacting with it.
This term is often confused with impressions…
However, they are different, the reach of a post is how many people could see your content.
Let’s say that you have 200 followers on Twitter and you post once a day. Your reach would be 200 and your impressions would be 200 because the post went out to each of your follower’s feeds.
However, what if we post multiple times a day? If we send out two posts a day what happens to our reach vs. impressions? In this scenario our reach remains 200, because our audience size hasn’t changed, however, our impressions will rise to 400 because two posts have appeared on the feed or our 200 followers.
Every time someone interacts with one of your posts it is classed as an engagement. Every like, mention, share, comment etc is classed as a single engagement.
There are different ways of measuring engagement rate depending on your social goals. However a good starting point is to work with the following formula:
Engagement rate= engagements/ impressions
This means that you take the total engagements, (every like, share, comment etc) and divide it by the total number of impressions (total number of times the post has been displayed). This will then give you your engagement rate as a percentage.
In terms of what qualifies as a good engagement rate, opinion differs between social channels and between marketers! As a general rule anything between 1% and 4.5% would class as average to good. If you’re scoring higher than that, good work, if you’re scoring lower than that, it may worth looking to see where you could improve.
A great feature of analytics is the audience breakdown or user demographics. This give you info on the users that are engaging with your posts, and provides you with awesome information to tweak the content you’re producing, and build up an audience persona.
If you aren’t hitting the engagement rate that you were expecting it might be worth looking at your user demographics, have you created your content with your users in mind? If not, head back to the drawing board and consider what you could do differently to appeal to your audience.
In an ideal world you’d see the number of people following you increasing each day, however you’re sure to hit a few snags and naturally there will be people following and un-following you or your brand.
Audience growth is a useful tool to spot and unusual patterns in your user behaviour, did you have lots or people follow or un-follow on a specific day? Go back to that post and identify what caused that behaviour, you’ll either want to replicate it or avoid it in future!
Digital marketing offers businesses a fantastic opportunity to market their business. Unlike offline marketing, every post and action creates measurable data that can be used to understand your audience, develop your content strategies and advertising campaigns.
Spending the time getting to grips with the key metrics will allow you to focus your marketing efforts and grow you business in 2019!