In many ways, Google Analytics makes content engagement metrics simple enough for anyone to use. But, with a little more in-depth training, Google Analytics can yield much more focused data than what is normally reported on. Bounce rates, for example, give a high-level snapshot of the performance of your content; however, with the right setup and plan, you can create customized content engagement metrics that map directly to your content marketing goals.
In today’s post, we’ll cover three lesser-known content engagement metrics in Google Analytics and show you how they can more accurately reveal the performance of your content. This way, you’ll have better data to draw from to enhance your content strategy.
Goal: Increase Quality Organic Search
Organic search is the holy grail of content marketing, because it reduces the cost of advertising (aka Pay-Per-Click) and makes your brand more visible on Google. But simply looking at the amount of organic search traffic in Google Analytics won’t tell you the whole story of organic search’s role in your content strategy.
One of the problems with understanding leads and conversions is that the customer journey is complicated. Oftentimes, consumers may discover your company through organic search, but then return from social to your site later when they convert. If you’re not looking for it, you’re missing out on the role of organic search in this conversion, making it seem like organic searches have a negligible effect on your conversions.
The problem is, according to Neil Patel, that “regular conversions don’t tell the whole story.” That’s because the conversion page shows you “last touch attribution,” which effectively ignores any interactions except the one right before the consumer signs up or buys.
To get the whole picture of the quality of your organic search performance, the content engagement metric you need to know is called “assisted conversions.”
Assisted conversions shows you “any interaction that is on the conversion path.” Think of how, in hockey, there can be multiple people credited with assists before the goal is scored. In this same way, Google Analytics can show you how your content “team” is working together to score the conversion.
If your organic search is under-performing in both social and assisted conversions, then it’s definitely time to do a deep dive into what’s going on.
Goal: Increase Engagement
Consistent engagement with your consumer base is critical, especially in the awareness phase of the journey (i.e., your blog content). But how do you know if your content is keeping their attention? Simply looking at traffic and bounce rates won’t tell you that. You need to know if your content is bringing consumers in and keeping them coming back.
What you need to look at is the frequency of visits. You’ll find this report, known as the Google Analytics Frequency and Recency Report, in Audience > Behavior. From there, you’ll get a picture of how many tracked users are returning to your site in a given time frame.
If the bulk of your users are hitting the site one time, it may point to a problem with your follow-up or the quality of your content.
Goal: Get More Conversions
One of the most important reasons for having all your content online is to get people to sign up or purchase your offerings. When customers click on links or videos or fill in forms, these are positive events that show engagement. But these events aren’t always automatically tracked in Google Analytics, leaving you in the dark about how your content is working to encourage these conversions.
With custom events, you can create new variables that will track conversions and critical actions like watching a video, hitting the bottom of the page, or filling out a form. Without placing custom events variables for these actions, it can be unclear how your customers are interacting with the content you’re producing.
By tracking events over time, you get insights into the design of your page and the effectiveness of your calls to action. Just remember to do your A/B testing!
Learn More About Content Engagement Metrics
We literally wrote the book on content engagement metrics with our Content Measurement Handbook. Check it out today and you’ll learn:
- How to define content goals
- Which metrics you should use to measure content goals
- How to configure Google Analytics for content measurement
- The key reports for measuring content performance
Get the Content Measurement Handbook now and become the content engagement metric wizard in your organization!