Using analytics sounds so complicated doesn’t it? In this post (as requested by Janet from Rambles, Rants and Writings as part of my Over To You theme) I will discuss some easy ways to make your analytics work for you, and how to use the results to drive more traffic your way.
The first thing to do is decide which analytics you will use. Google Analytics is a good starting point or you could even use your blog’s in house analytics, although these can be a bit skewed.
The first thing to do, is to set the timescale you want to look at. I would suggest thirty days as this will give a good insight over a reasonable time period.
Have a look at the section which shows where your traffic is coming from. On Google Analytics this is the “Top Referrals” section. This list shows a break down of where your traffic is coming from. For example, my list from the last thirty days shows the following (most to least views):
1.Google – This is traffic that have found your site using a search engine
2. Direct – People who have just typed in your link, or who have you bookmarked
3. Inlinkz – This is people who have linked visited my host posts through my linky, Anything Goes.
4. Stumble Upon
7. Cuddle Fairy – This is people linking up to Blogger Club UK, a linky I have been co-hosting with Becky.
This is a pretty standard month for me, except Twitter is usually ahead of Facebook. I am quite pleasantly surprised at how much traffic has come from Facebook this month as I usually don’t get a huge amount of traffic from there.
Once you have this information, you can then use it to see what is working and what isn’t. For example, this month I can see my SEO is working. And I need to do more on Twitter and Pinterest. The fact that Pinterest didn’t even make the list tells me Pinterest is something I should definitely improve on.
The choice is then down to two things, either of which can help you improve traffic:
- You can decide to make an even bigger effort on the sites that are sending you traffic. They are tried and tested sites that you know work for your content, and it would be well worth spending a bit more time in those places to further boost your visibility there and make more connections.
- You can decide to work on the networks which aren’t doing so well. You could amend the way you post slightly, and see if that makes a difference. For example, if you always post at a certain time on a network and it isn’t doing so well, try a different time and see what happens. Or in my case with Pinterest, I could use Pinterest Analytics to further work out what’s going wrong. I think it’s a case of not writing recipes or craft guides which always do well on Pinterest, although I’m sure there is more to it than that!
On a side note, you’ll notice Instagram isn’t listed either. To track Instagram traffic, you will need to create an Instagram landing page on your blog and use the link to that page in your profile. You can then see how many people visit from Instagram by noting the page views.
Using analytics like these are also a good way of assessing which linkys are working for you and which aren’t if you join quite a lot.
There are loads more things you can do when using analytics, but this is a good starting point for anyone just trying to make some sense of them for the first time and learning how to use them to their advantage.
Kori Tomeldon’s ebook, How To Use Custom Dashboards In Google Analytics: Using Custom Dashboards To Grow Your Blog has lot’s of fab, in depth advice for anyone looking to go into using analytics a bit deeper.
Thanks for the suggestion Janet 🙂
It’s not too late to get involved – ask me anything, suggest a topic, or write a guest post! Have a look here for more details.
Do you use analytics when planning your marketing strategy or do you just follow a set routine? Do you have any tips to add on using analytics to drive more traffic to you blog? Let me know in the comments 🙂