Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Measuring your Content Marketing efforts

In my recent post on Content Marketing confusion I described how I thought one of the most important KPI's for the optimisation of content is the number of returning visitors to your site. You should easily be able to measure this figure using your website analytics package (such as Google Analytics, which even has a specific report for this purpose: Audience >; Behaviour > New vs. Returning ).

But l thought it might be worthwhile to take a bit of time to dig into this subject further. So I've pulled together some other important metrics for Content Marketing that I think are beneficial and how to measure them.

Bounce rate:
This metric is the percentage of all visitors who come to your site and only view one page, in other words they bounce straight off. Usually it is a positive sign if you have a low bounce rate, indicating that a higher percentage of people go on to view subsequent pages... a sign of engagement with your content.
Note: I sometimes exclude paid marketing (e.g. PPC) from this statistic, as paid traffic usually drives people to pages deep into a site to carry out specific functionality.

Pages per visit:
Again an indication of site enagement this metric is quite useful and is sometimes quoted alongside bounce rate. However care should be taken to factor in the site's user experience... for example if content is purposely split across several pages (such as to optimise advertising opportunities) then this figure will be comparatively high.

Returning visitors:
As mentioned at the beginning of this article, the returning visitors figure gives a site owner a good idea of how interested visitors have previously been (e.g. interested enough to come back). However combining this visitor information with the previous two measures (bounce and pages per visit) does provide a better idea of the 'stickiness' of site content and also potential issues. For example: calculating the number of pages seen by return visitors, identifying new visitors who don't bounce and finding those pages that have a high bounce rate even for visitors who come back can each start to paint a picture of where to focus your content marking effort in the future.
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