In business blogging, ROI starts with a trickle long before it becomes a flood.
However, your boss (and boss’s boss) wants results now.
Blogging best practices may speed you toward greater ROI. However, there’ s no magic bullet to get there tomorrow.
The fastest, most consistent route to growth is metrics. Reading your metrics helps you understand what works, so you can improve your results time after time. And some metrics are better than others. Take a look at these four ‘power metrics’ that help you grow faster.
Blogs interested in commerce should focus more on conversion events than traffic generation, Convince and Convert’s Jay Baer says.
Therefore average length of stay and pages viewed per visit are important stats to monitor.
Consistent growth in those categories indicates that your content provides your target audience with the information they need to make a purchase decision and move down the sales funnel.
Identifying which sites send traffic to your blog is essential to becoming more effective, Jay says.
Once you identify which sites send significant traffic to your blog, you can analyze what you are doing that has caused you to have success. Knowing what content to produce and how to promote it, for example, will help you get similar sites to send you even more traffic.
Before a new blog can start producing results, it must gather an audience.
As Heidi Cohen put it, blog results snowball over time as you improve search rankings and attract a larger audience.
To track if you’re on pace to get more followers, look beyond how many visitors you attract. Vocus SEO Manager Scott Benson says bloggers should focus on growing their number of organic landing pages that receive traffic.
The best way to accomplish this is consistently creating valuable content. After all, the more gateways your blog has, the more likely people will be to take a look.
To attract organic traffic, you must optimize blog posts for search based on the keywords that perform best for your business.
Track whether your efforts are paying off by tracking how many organic keywords send you traffic.
“Growing your number of organic landing pages and organic keywords sending traffic guarantees that you’re expanding your ‘organic net’ to capture as much targeted traffic as possible,” Scott says.
Overanalyzing daily or weekly statistics can harm your blog as much as ignoring stats altogether. Sometimes a micro look at blog stats causes people to quit prematurely.
Looking at those small samples sizes is akin to watching a garden hose fill a swimming pool. You won’t see any improvements because success doesn’t happen as quickly as you want it.
Instead, examine your progress over a few months to gain an accurate perspective about your blog’s improvement.
A blog is not a short-term fix for businesses. It takes time to produce content, grow traffic and turn the medium into a money making machine.
Many businesses don’t have the patience to wait until blogging pays off. From 2010 to 2011, the number of businesses that ran a blog fell from 50 percent to 37 percent.
More might consider blogging after reading this next stat. B2B and B2C bloggers get 67 percent and 88 percent more leads per month, respectively.
Remain patient and continue to consistently produce top content, monitor your progress and make adjustments based on those stats.
Image: badastronomy (Creative Commons)