Today’s post comes from Cristina over at Janded. I have really enjoyed getting to know her and reading her content. You should definitely check out her blog after reading this amazing article she wrote! I learned so much after reading and feel a lot better about interpreting numbers that seem scary. A big thanks to Janded and happy reading!
Bloggers’ Worst Fears about Analytics – Sorted
Being a blogger is a huge achievement. And by blogger I mean someone who publishes new, good articles regularly and takes care of his online presence.
You just got your domain, your blog is now self-hosted and you have just added Google Analytics’ tracking code for a few months and those numbers scare you. Here are my top 3 bloggers’ worst fears about Analytics, sorted. Let’s begin!
Few page views
We all aim to 10k/month views or even more. But when Analytics keeps showing you only 1.5-2k page views per month is depressing. If you write good quality content, from SEO’s point of view, your page views will start to grow when Google will index your articles. Patience is the key! Google needs 2 to 5 months to index a new article and to rank it properly. Also making sure that you don’t abandon your social media accounts is also something that you should have in mind. Even though your audience is small now, be patient and persistent and results will start to show.
Huge bounce rate
Let’s talk about this. Just because Analytics tells you that bounce rate “is the percentage of single-page visits (i.e. visits in which the person left your site from the entrance page without interacting with the page)” that doesn’t mean that is a bad thing if you have a high bounce rate. Here’s why: you promote blog posts, which are specific tiny ‘pages’ on your website. People click on your link, read your article and fly away. So it’s perfectly fine to have a 70% bounce rate. People will usually say that it’s a bad thing because usually people sell stuff through a website and having a possible customer leaving without interacting with a page product it is bad for business.
If you’re not convinced by now, here are some things you can do to lower a little your bounce rate:
- Add a ‘related posts’ section at the end of each blog posts – WordPress’ Jetpack has an option for that;
- Add links inside your blog post that link to older blog posts (i.e.: if I publish a homemade mayo recipe, when I will post a recipe about how to make homemade spicy mayonnaise, I will include a link to that homemade mayo recipe). My favourite trick is to use the quote option from formatting text and chances are that it will attract more clicks;
- Include widgets that will redirect to other content on your blog, such as: recent blog post widget, most popular posts, archive, recent comment widget and so on. Also don’t exaggerate! Include 1 to 2 widget like this into your sidebar.
Low average session duration
This is one of my favourite things to talk about, because it is so easy to understand and to improve. You will not like to hear this, but people don’t read your entire blog post. Or at least 80% of them. Why? Because we are lazy creatures! We skim while we’re reading articles.
Wanna increase the average session duration? Grab a pen a take notes:
- Write longer blog posts; lots of SEO specialists have concluded that longer text is better for SEO, but not just for that. Longer blog posts will take longer time to skim. Easy right? But don’t let yourself taken by the wave – quality over quantity! It is recommended to write blog posts that have a little over 1000 words. But if you don’t have that much to write about, 800 will also do;
- Include more pictures; As I said: we are lazy creatures, but we like photos. How do you picture yourself in 5 years? See? That question has ‘picture’ inside of it, not ‘words’ or ‘phrases’. That because we think in images. Add more qualitative pictures to your blog posts that will keep your audience engaged for a little longer. Also make sure you use a plug-in that will compress your images, so that your blog will load faster.
- Include headings. Skimming is more pleasant when you have subheading, quotes or bold text. In this way people might want to find out more about a certain part of your article and they will get the main idea of the blog post faster and easier.
So, that’s pretty much it! You don’t have to try all these tips at once. Take one or a few and see how it goes. People are different so they react differently to your content based on a lot of factors. See how some of these tips work for you and if you do, please promise me that you will have patience, because otherwise you won’t see any improvement.
I really hope this article made you a little more confident about your numbers in analytics. I know that it is hard and it takes a lot of time, but if you really are into blogging, it will so much worth it!
Thank you again to Cristina over at Janded! Please be sure to check her out on her blog and all her social media platforms!