“Do you have any metrics or success stories that will give me an idea of what I can expect as I get started blogging?”
I get this question, or some variation of it, all the time. It’s completely reasonable! Everyone wants to know what metrics matter the most when they get started blogging.
As business owners, when we dump time, energy, and funds into something like marketing, we want to know that there will be some kind of return. Unfortunately, while it’s important to track some KPIs from the time you get started, it’s also easy to get lost in the sea of data and lose sight of what actual progress looks like! That’s why I typically recommend these four metrics to get you started.
#1: Traffic to Your Site
This one may seem obvious, but tracking the traffic to your site (and to your blog) is a good indicator that your audience is growing over time. You can also track when the traffic to your site spikes. Knowing what days you’re more likely to get an increase in site traffic can help you arrange your blog posting schedule, and drive traffic even more than you already are.
#2: Traffic Source
Knowing where your traffic is coming from can help you hone other aspects of your marketing. If you notice a lot of your blog traffic coming from one social media channel, for example, you might pour some extra energy into connecting with your followers there. You can do this in a handful of different ways depending on where your traffic is coming from.
If Traffic is Coming From Social Media You Could…
- Run an ad campaign targeting your ideal clients on the platform that’s bringing you traffic
- Construct a custom campaign that encourages engagement
If Traffic is Coming From an Email Campaign…
- Increase the number of emails you send (as long as you’re continuing to add extra value)
- Try promoting your content to your email list in different ways by incorporating a lead magnet or freemium, e-course for new subscribers that links to your blogs, or an “ambassador” program that allows your list to share your blogs with their family and friends
#3: Top-Viewed Posts
The key to content that connects is writing about what you’re passionate about and what your audience wants to read about. Although you might think you have a pretty good idea about the topics your readers are interested in, knowing what your top-viewed posts are can help to either confirm your theory or offer up new topics for you to consider.
Occasionally it’s easy to get caught up in writing only about what you’re passionate about. But our business blogs can’t be selfish, we have to always be thinking about how we can add value to our audience through our content. If you’re noticing a trend across your top viewed posts – don’t ignore it! Continue to expand on the topics and content that your audience loves.
#4: Email Subscribers and Social Followers
The key when you’re tracking the size of your following is to focus on positive trends over time. Small dips or occasional unsubscribes aren’t going to hurt you in the long run. In general, the goal is to watch your numbers climb at a steady rate. It’s even more important to ensure that your following is actively engaging. Are you receiving any replies to email marketing campaigns? Are your social media followers liking, commenting, and sharing your posts? An engaged tribe is a tribe you’ll have more success converting into engaged clients.
Beware of the Overnight Success Story
Keep in mind – blogging is a long-term marketing strategy. I know that it’s tempting to look for overnight success results, but you’re better off staying consistent, and watching for positive data trends over time while watching your metrics change. In today’s world, it’s so easy to get caught up in the possibility of having tens of thousands of followers or seeing a blog post go viral. But true success is defined by doing good work, and a successful business blog is defined by putting out valuable content that will resonate with your audience.
Continue to focus on doing the good work you’re already doing so much of, and track these KPIs to check that you’re on the right course!