Today’s task for the 31 Day blogging project is to dig into your blog’s statistics. But not just to see where you’re at or how much things have changed since the last time you looked. While you’re there, you might as well learn how you can use those stats to help build a better blog.
Here are some of the key metrics you’ll want to analyze:
Knowing which posts are most popular makes it easier for you to know what to write about. If it’s a popular post, a lot of your readers all want this same information. It also lets you know which pages on your blog you need to optimize to drive traffic to your archives or your subscription page or a squeeze page.
Where your traffic is coming from is important and you should have a good mix of the following:
- Organic traffic – Organic traffic comes through the search engines. These are typically people with questions and most will be first-time visitors.
- Referral traffic – Referral visitors come from social networks and links from other blogs or websites. Since most of these people have been referred by someone they already trust, they’ll have a little more trust in your blog than a first-time visitor.
- Direct traffic – Direct traffic consists of readers who’ve either bookmarked your blog or they’ve been there often enough that they remember your URL. These people may also be subscribers. This is your most loyal traffic and they’re the readers who share your content and leave comments on every post.
What are visitors looking for
What questions are visitors typing into their search engines when they land on your blog? Are you answering those questions to their satisfaction? And can you turn those questions into future post ideas?
What keywords are they using
It’s important to know what keywords people are using when they land on your blog. It might surprise you to know that at one time the keyword “Beyonce” was one of the most popular keywords on this blog. It brought in a lot of traffic, but it wasn’t good traffic. Those visitors were looking for information about the celebrity, not blogging.
What keywords are visitors using when they land on your blog? If those keywords are relevant, then you know you’re pulling in targeted traffic and you should use more of the same. If they’re not relevant, then you should try find a way to optimize the pages they’re landing on so you can keep those visitors on your blog.
What’s your bounce rate
Your bounce rate is a ratio of the number of unique visitors to your site versus the number of page views. The more pages they view the lower your bounce rate – and that’s a good thing. Use internal linking to lead your visitors to additional relevant content. You’ll increase your page views and make your blog stickier.
Those are the basic metrics you’ll want to track but there are lots of other things you can look at. What stats do you usually watch and how do the effect your blogging?