Did you know that nearly 91% of B2B marketers and 86% of B2C marketers use content marketing, and yet 66% of them have no idea how to measure their ROI and marketing metrics?
Why do you think that is?
Partly because while many marketers don’t know where to start, and the rest find it too challenging, to begin with. This is because content marketing’s reach is mostly vague. While some people may read your content and hit the purchase button right away, others might be sceptical of deciding to purchase from your brand. So, then, what’s the solution?
While the benefits of Google Analytics are many, you can also use Google Analytics to measure growth and ROI of your content marketing strategy. In this post, we’ll teach you how!
The Charm of Google Analytics
Google Analytics can offer you a ton of insightful information on your site’s overall health and metrics. However, if you are using the tool only to track the total number of visitors to your website, you are not using the amazing tool to its full potential. In this post, we are discussing some amazing google analytics tips with you. Although more than 29 million websites use Google Analytics to track their website operations, most marketers aren’t aware that they can use Google Analytics to track their site’s marketing performance as well.
By using Google Analytics, you can get access to a wealth of data that can further help you to switch up your content marketing game for the better. For instance, using Google Analytics can provide you with relevant answers to some pivotal questions like:
- What is the most popular type of content in the market?
- Which content format is best-suited for increasing search engine visibility?
- How frequently should you publish new content?
- At what time (of the day/week/month) does your website get the most traffic?
- Does your content deliver noticeable conversions?
But before you can dive in with using Google Analytics to measure growth and ROI, you must know how to set your Google Analytics for the same. Let’s begin with the basics first.
How to set your Google Analytics account for measuring growth and ROI?
To receive Google Analytics tracking reports, you must first add a unique tracking code to every page of your site’s HTML. For this, you need to go to the Admin tab in the Property column, under Tracking Info:
Once you get the code, you can add it to the header of every page of your website like so:
Another easy way to do this is by using plugin implementations like Google Analytics by MonsterInsights or Insert Headers and Footers. In the next step, you must sync your Google Search Console, and Google Ads accounts with your Google Analytics account so that Analytics can extract data from each.
Now, we begin with the actual process of using Google Analytics to measure growth and ROI.
- How to set up Goal Tracking in Google Analytics?
While using Google Analytics, although the tracking code allows you to track the core operations on your site (for example, what pages visitors are viewing the most), you can crank it up a notch to collect more data on visitors interactions – a.k.a. Goals – with your website. The Goals feature lets you track things beyond content performance metrics to help you get a better idea of your site’s overall health. Goals are categorized into two types – Destinations and Events.
There are three primary ways to create a new Goal in Google Analytics, namely, templates (pre-filled configuration), custom set-ups, and smart goals. However, using Google Analytics will only provide the Goal temple if you have assigned your property an Industry Category. To do so, go to the Admin tab and select the Property column under Property Settings.
You need to log in to your Google Analytics dashboard and go to the Admin tab and then the Goals tab under it. You can create as much as twenty goals here.
You can create a new goal by clicking the New Goal option, or you can import an existing goal. Whatever you choose, be careful since you cannot delete your goals once created – you can, however, deactivate and rename them once you’re finished with a particular goal.
You can also select the Import from Gallery option and browse through the Analytics Solutions Gallery to see if there are templates that can become your tracking goal. If you don’t find any template, you can always select the Custom option. This is one of the most amazing benefits of Google Analytics. Once you decide on your goal, you need to choose the specific type of goal you wish to create.
- How to use Content Groups by using Google Analytics?
A recent addition in the Analytics dashboard, Content Grouping feature allows you to group certain types of content (for instance, blog posts or white papers) together and view the data for each group.
We recommend that you create Content Groups before diving straight into Analytics reports since your Content Groups will come in handy to filter all the reports provided by using Google Analytics.
- Google Analytics Reports every marketer must know
Using Google Analytics to measure growth and ROI can often get overwhelming since it comes packed with tons of nifty features that enable you to create custom reports. These reports can offer detailed information about the visitors driving to your website and the content they are interacting with. This is another one of the benefits of Google Analytics. However, there’s so much data to experiment with, deciding on which report you should consider and which you should not, can become confusing. But worry not, for we’re here to help!
Here are the reports you must look out for!
- Audience Reports
As you can guess by the name, the Audience section offers all kinds of relevant information on the visitors coming to your site. With this information at your disposal, you can uncover a few other essential aspects of your customers (both existing and potential):
With relevant demographic insights, you can create separate buyer personas for your customers. The Audience report provides detailed demographic information on factors like age, gender, location, language, and interests. You can use this information to customize your content for individual buyer personas.
Although the Audience report on demographic data isn’t a 100% accurate, it is a step in the right direction – you will have a quite general idea on your audience’s demographics.
CLV for different marketing channels
Another key metric that plays a crucial role in determining your site’s success is the Customer Lifetime Value or CLV. To analyze the CLV, you can opt for the Lifetime Value report posited under the Audience tab in the dashboard and identify the marketing channel that generates the most high-quality customers for you.
Yes, it is essential to measure and monitor user loyalty as well. By doing so, you will know how loyal your visitors and users are. Think about the benefits of Google Analytics, and you would see how it helps you to track user loyalty. To find out the user loyalty stats, you can check the Active Users report under the Audience tab in the dashboard. This report shows the number of times a particular visitor has returned to your website over different time intervals (in a cycle of 1 to 28 days).
- Acquisition Reports
With the Acquisition report, you can get all the information on where your visitors are coming from. The Acquisition report data can help enhance your content marketing campaigns since it will point out the promotional channels that are turning the majority of conversions. As a result, you can focus on distributing your content more on those channels.
Note: Make sure your conversion goals are set up correctly. If not, you can only identify the channels that are driving traffic to your site. However, you will not be able to know which channels are driving the conversions.
- Marketing Channels
Another one of the benefits of Google Analytics is the Channels section that offers a comprehensive overview of all the channels that are steering traffic towards your website. These channels can be categorized by sources into:
- Organic search
First, you need to go to the Acquisition option in the dashboard, then select the All Traffic option, and finally click on Channels to find the sources from where the maximum traffic is coming to your site.
Take a look at this report:
The report shows that the visitors arriving at the site from paid search have a higher conversion rate than display ads. Hence, the next step would be to focus more on improving the organic search and remove display ads from your marketing campaigns since they have a poor conversion rate.
- Referring Websites
Another place to determine where your visitors are coming from is individual domains. By identifying the domains or “referrers” that drive traffic to your site help you see which websites or advertising platforms are pushing maximum visitors. Come to think about benefits of Google Analytics, you can get report by clicking on Acquisition, then choosing the Overview option, and then selecting Referrals.
You must carefully monitor both the volume of visitors from each of your referral domain and the ROI that they bring. In the process, you may find that though some sources may drive in vast volumes of traffic, they have low conversion rates.
- Organic Queries
This is a one of the premier benefits of Google Analytics. For every content marketer, identifying the keywords that drive the most traffic to websites is a must. By recognizing such high-priority keywords, marketers can efficiently boost their overall search engine ranks and also find unique content ideas for their sites. Keywords also have a significant impact on click-through rates as well. This is what makes the Organic Queries section one of the most crucial segments of the Acquisition reports:
- Behaviour Reports
The last report determining your content performance is the Behaviour report. Under the Behaviour tab, you will find the Overview section that offers a brief overview of the behaviour of your visitors on your site.
The Behaviour tab contains smaller reports that offer information about the actions of users on your websites such as the average time they spend on the site and individual pages; if they use the search bar on the site; what is the total page view for each web page; the bounce rate, and so on.
With the help of the Behaviour reports, you can streamline your content marketing strategy according to how visitors engage with your content.
How to use Google Analytics to track ROI?
When it comes to measuring the ROI of content marketing, one thing is for sure – it will be tricky. We mentioned right at the beginning itself that content is crafty. According to a research, almost 47% of buyers read anywhere around 3 to 5 pieces of content before converting – they need to be sure that a brand is trustworthy before they can purchase with their hard-earned money.
Thanks to Google Analytics, you need not create a bulk of content with the hopes that your potential customers will purchase your brand. Google Analytics allows you to run reports that can track how many of your content pieces the audience is interacting with and what URLs influence their purchase behaviour. By monitoring this data, you can better understand how and what kind of content has the greatest impact on conversions.
Here’s how you can measure the content marketing ROI with Google Analytics data:
- E-commerce transactions
Marketers who are in the e-commerce game need to track overall sales. You can do this by using the custom code embedded in your shopping cart. This tracking code helps you to make the best out from the benefits of Google Analytics to determine things like which pages are driving maximum conversions, how people on the Web arrive at the money pages, and which are the highest-value products in your online store. To put it simply, you can track the most powerful aspects of your e-commerce sales funnel, and also the ones that are not working for you.
It is essential to know the correct pathway to build a robust and well-performing landing page to boost the conversion rates. For instance, Growth Rock increased its landing page conversion rate by a whopping 75% with just a few alterations.
Let’s discuss how you can leverage this important one of the benefits of Google Analytics. To track your e-commerce revenue, you must enable E-commerce reporting by going to the Admin panel and setting the e-commerce set-up button from “Off” to “On” like so:
In the next step, you will have to add the customized tracking code to the shopping cart system that reports when and how purchases occur on your website. This can be either done via server-side inclusion, or a separate module through your content system or hand-coded HTML.
- Transactions from non-e-commerce sites
Even today, there are businesses that don’t sell products/services online but instead use their website to generate leads for their offline business. Even for such non-e-commerce enterprises, many benefits of Google Analytics can work its charm.
For offline businesses, too, each visitor arriving on the company website holds a monetary value. The primary difference between e-commerce revenue tracking and non-e-commerce revenue is that the latter isn’t determined by the number of sales reported by the conventional shopping cart system. To track revenue from non-e-commerce sites with benefits of Google Analytics, you must log in your Analytics account and follow the same steps you did for creating a new Goal. Event Goal is your best bet since they let you set a custom event value for unique circumstances based on your definition.
The Goals in your Analytics account will evaluate each visitor that arrives at your site through a simple equation – take the total amount of money you have made and divide it by the number of new/unique visitors that come to your site. By doing so, you can calculate the worth of each new visitor. Not just that, Goals can also track more such specific data. Let’s assume, you generate leads for your site via a free white paper, and you already know that the average value of a visitor who comes in through the white paper is $20. Now, if you set up an Event Goal based on this data, you can track how potential leads traverse through your website. This will help you improve your site’s structure to boost conversions.
- Integration with Google Ads
For fully using the benefits of Google Analytics, integrating your account with your Google Ads account will enable you to see and access a host of useful data – from page impressions to earnings from user visits – all in one dashboard.
Marketers who publish blogs regularly can quickly analyze the trends associated with their blogs and find out what works for them and what does not. This is the perfect way for enjoying the benefits of Google Analytics. For instance, you can see which posts bring in high CPM; which page is best-suited for promoting ads; refine your content-based ad monetization strategy by monitoring click data based on user location, browser type, and referral source, and which areas in your site need improvement.
By extracting all such relevant information, you can take advantage of new channels for generating additional revenue.
- Measure the ROI for different types of website traffic
The last tip for using Google Analytics to measure growth and ROI is by breaking down your site’s revenue stream based on the traffic type. Nowadays, most marketers use a mix of various channels to distribute their content, such as social media, online communities, and paid promotion, among other things. It is a known fact that each of these channels generates a different ROI.
This is precisely why you should delineate your channels to see which source brings in the most traffic, hence, the most income. By doing so, you can better allocate your funds on the channels that drive in maximum revenue.
Another important one among the numerous benefits of Google Analytics to track this data by setting up the Advanced Traffic segment – it lets you categorize visitors based on referral sites sources to determine the types of traffic that lead to best conversions. Go to the Advanced Segments tab under the Standard Reporting tab of your Analytics dashboard. Under this, you will find certain default segments. However, you can also create your own segments based on specific sites/types of websites.
You can create traffic segments like Facebook traffic vs. Twitter traffic; visitors arriving through mobile devices; visitors arriving from blogs you comment on, and visitors arriving from forums in which you participate.
After setting up these unique segments, you can enjoy another important one among the benefits of Google Analytics to filter your Goal conversions further by these segments to compare the most profitable traffic streams for your website.
So, as you can see, the possibilities with and benefits of Google Analytics are endless. The key is to know how to use it correctly!