Just because you are a blog owner, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t have Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) or conversion goals for your site. As a matter of fact, if you envision your blog dominating a specific niche, its a good idea to set up some conversion goals and work to improve them over time.
#1 Monitor your Twitter conversions
If you are a big Twitter user, than you know that building a list of legitimate followers can only help your blog grow and give you an opportunity to interact with your readers. Plus, Google and other search engines actively use the data from Twitter to rank Websites.
Google Analytics allows you to set up clicks as a conversion with event tracking. So, every time that someone clicks the “follow me” button that takes them to your Twitter page it will trigger a conversion.
Here are some tips for tracking your Twitter signups from your blog:
- Give each link a specific name so you can see what part of the page is sending converting. For example, set up a sidebar conversion and a post conversion.
- Track your Twitter follower numbers over time so you can compare the dates of traffic sent to your Twitter page and followers. For example, you could look at the month of April and see that you added an additional 250 followers on Twitter from 1,400 visitors you sent to your page. Your actual conversion rate would be 17.9% (number of followers added / number of visitors sent to Twitter page = conversion rate).
- After determining your average conversion rate over a few months, you could then easily calculate your true conversion rate and know what sending 100 visitors to Twitter would do for your following ratio. In our scenario, you would receive approximately 18 followers.
#2 Monitor your RSS subscriptions
You spent hours on SEO and networking to get this visitor to your blog. Now, you just need to get him engaged with your site and notified every time you add new content. Your RSS feed is just the trick to get all of that accomplished.
If you are not already, you should be using feedburner or something equivalent that will provide you with your RSS stats. You should approach this much the same way you approach your Twitter conversions. Monitor your RSS subscription levels over time and compare the increases (or decreases) to your Google Analytics conversion rates.
Here are some ways to use the data:
- Test conversion based on post types across categories
- Test post title types against each other, for example, do “How To” or “List Posts” work better for gaining new RSS subscribers
- Test buttons in the sidebar against buttons in the actual active window.
#3 Monitor page views for new visitors
Once a visitor has converted into an RSS subscriber, they may only visit one page per visit, mainly to see a page you have recently published. They have already read your other content and just want the fresh stuff. So, having a high bounce rate for RSS subscribers is acceptable.
On the other hand, a high bounce rate for your search or referral traffic means that you are not doing a good job of engaging new readers with your blog. Now, don’t beat yourself up. Chances are that visitors are finding exactly what they are looking for when they land on your page. The problem is, they are not being enticed to visit multiple pages.
I have personally found that if a visitor moves from page to page inside of a blog, they are going to be more likely to subscribe to RSS or follow on Twitter.
You should make sure that you leverage the active window by placing links and calls to action within the main content. Having your RSS button and recent posts on the sidebar just doesn’t get the job done.
In order to monitor this traffic segment, you will want to set up a page view goal within Google Analytics. Everytime someone visists 3 or more pages, a conversion is triggered.
Once you have the goal set up, you can go to that conversion goal and segment the traffic into “new visitors”. I have not spent much time on this blog working on multiple page views for new visits and it has a conversion rate of 11.91%. My goal will be 40% for this blog by the end of the year.
Here are a few tips to help you improve this metric:
- Always link multiple times to yourself within your posts to entice visitors to click and read more content
- Use a related post plugin to add related posts to the end of the posts
- Work on your article titles so they will grab attention and entice a click if seen on the sidebar
- Use pictures to highlight links you want clicked