We’re here today with a reminder about an all-important truth when it comes to WordPress blog articles: tracking is everything.
Typically, publishing articles on your WordPress blog can be extremely rewarding from an ROI perspective. But how do you know if your publishing commitment is actually resulting in a positive ROI?
WordPress Analytics is the answer
Without tracking your blog, you won’t be able to answer questions like:
- How can I take my content marketing to the next level?
- How can I use existing blog posts to drive leads for my business?
- How can I make my articles more relevant to my target audience interests?
And failing to answer these questions can leave you demotivated…and eventually cause you to waste time on pointless drivel that doesn’t get you what you really want: more traffic, more referrals, more conversions.
Why tracking WordPress blog posts matters?
There’s an adage that says:
if it can be measured, it can be improved
While publishing more articles may work in the short run (considering that search engines are hungry beasts), tracking results (or KPI metrics if you prefer) is a smarter way to optimize your content strategy.
That said, several companies make a big mistake when it comes to tracking blog posts: they just focus on vanity metrics i.e. overall page views and unique visitors. Sure, these metrics are important (you get to show off in front of advertisers), but they aren’t a true measure of the success of your blog posts.
Even sites like Medium, YouTube, and Upworthy have moved away from relating blog post success to vanity metrics. They just don’t think that vanity metrics are reliable or useful for measuring the success of their content. Upworthy, for example, now uses attention data to see if readers actually engaged with their content or came and left.
The image above shows attention data for three different posts. The post with the most page views didn’t receive much attention per page view. The post with fewer page views had more attention minutes…Food for thought.
Everyone feels good when vanity metrics go up, yet you may feel clueless on achieving an overall goal. As Jay Baer, New York Times best-selling author, puts it:
It’s About Actions Not Eyeballs
While this statement applies to most WordPress websites, companies that are concerned about their sales pipeline (such as B2B businesses) should pay most attention to it. These companies should be using a website tracker for analyzing the following metrics:
- Number of leads driven by a blog post
- Number of opt ins/subscriptions driven by a blog post
- Number of monetary purchases driven by a blog post
- Number of referrals to their landing page driven by a blog post
Lots of businesses measure page views, but not many of them measure the business impact of their blog posts. That’s where the above-mentioned metrics will take you. A reason why so many technology and internet focused publications went out of business after Google’s algorithm updates is that their business model was based on vanity metrics instead of actionable ones.
Options to track WordPress blog articles
Knowing how your visitors interact with your blog posts is crucial for your business. Most website owners will think about using Google Analytics for the purpose. You just need a Google account to start using this tool. Universal Analytics is the new way of tracking post-performance and is recommended over Classic Analytics.
After signing up, you receive a tracking code that should be placed in the closing tag of your WordPress site’s header.php file. You get options such as Intelligence Events, Behavior and Conversions to track the important metrics for your business.
To avoid these issues, you can look beyond Google Analytics. The ClickMeter Link Shortener and Analytics plugin for WordPress can be used to understand which blog posts drive most engagement and which posts or pages lead to the most valuable conversions. The results, which are available in an easy-to-read report, not only tell you the number of leads, purchases, etc. but also the reasoning behind those numbers, so you can get an idea of how to modify or improve your content for better results.
The WordPress Analytics plugin by ClickMeter also includes advanced redirection options, so visitors can be redirected to the best blog posts, where they’ll yield the best conversion rates. And there’s a custom domain link shortener that allows website owners to shorten every link outside or inside of their blog posts using their own domain name (instead of using services like goo.gl, bit.ly or ow.ly).
To use the plugin, you need a ClickMeter subscription. There’s a free plan for companies that want to track less than 100 posts, 1,000 visits/month and don’t need to track conversions. Premium plans are available for businesses that want to track conversions and more. Here’s a glimpse of what the ClickMeter dashboard (where you get to see the results) looks like:
This plugin is easy to download, install and configure. Additional features include the ability to protect affiliate codes, monitor links inside posts to detect click fraud, and track important traffic sources such as parameters, referrers, and keywords. By tracking your WordPress blog posts, you can review your current content endeavors and make appropriate changes to achieve better business results.
ClickMeter Blog is using the plugin and we made a specific analysis on 50 marketing articles. You can find the report about ClickMeter WordPress Analytics on ClickMeter Knowledge Base.
Originally Posted: November 30th, 2015.
Post Updated: November 29th, 2017.