I love looking at the results of my blog posts. Not only does this data let me know how my blog is doing, but it informs future content, edits to existing content and lets me know what my audience likes and dislikes. Here’s how I use analytics for future blog posts.
If They Fail, I Fail Fast
Some posts fall flat. There could be any number of reasons for this, but I tend not to dwell on it. If no one reads or shares a post, I move on to the next one. It helps me understand that perhaps that topic or time of launch was not the right approach and I won’t do it again.
Or I don’t do that.
Sometimes I edit the post. Just because it launched doesn’t mean it can’t change. Edit anything and everything (except for the URL) and reshare it. A slight change in headline or intro paragraph can make it suddenly sharable.
If They Succeed…
1. I share more. If a post does well (lots of social shares, pageviews, etc.), I’ll share it again and again. If certain people share that post, I’ll reach out to them with other relevant post to get more shares.
2. I write additional posts on that topic. I tend to look more deeply into the topic. For example, “social media” is too broad, but “social media at conferences” is a great topic for a post.
3. I review the headline. Sometimes success is not so much from the content of the post but from the headline itself. A really intriguing headline can cause lots of retweets and shares without anyone actually clicking on the link. You can determine this result by looking at social shares compared to visits. If shares are high and visits are low, you’ve got a semi-viral headline. I’ll use that headline approach again in the future, but work to write a stronger post in hopes for more actual clicks.
4. I look at traffic drivers. There are a number of ways someone arrives at your post, whether it’s social media, search, bookmarking, etc. Having search drive traffic is ideal, since your name or business will be attributed to the topic of your blog post. If you’re aiming for thought leadership and ownership in a category, i.e. “social media at conferences,” and someone searches that term and your name comes up, you’re golden. The higher your blog results on a search engine, the better.
Take a look at your analytics and see what you can do differently for your next blog post. The great thing about web content is it can constantly change and morph, so don’t be afraid to update posts in real time as you learn the results.