If you’ve got an Organic SEO strategy, the chances are that it contains content creation in some form or another.
Content can be a massive driver of organic growth, and also when it comes to helping your users convert on-site, but it can also be time and labour-intensive, so you need to make sure that it’s working well.
But the question remains, how do you measure content performance? And why is it so important?
Keep reading to find out, or get in touch with the content experts at Embryo to find out more! Give us a call at 0161 327 2635 or email [email protected].
Why Is Measuring Content Performance Important?
Content performance is something that can be a little bit more difficult to track than, say, return on ad spend for paid ads on Google or social media or an increase in organic traffic.
Content is one of the most qualitative arms of digital marketing, which can mean it’s difficult to directly monitor or to attribute changes in metrics to content production specifically.
However, this doesn’t mean you should just ignore it – content creation is a significant contributing factor to the success or failure of the majority of SEO strategies, so understanding exactly how it’s performing is absolutely critical.
Content needs to be aligned not just with your brand voice, but also with your users.
Content needs to be:
- SEO optimised in line with what your users are searching for on Google
- Trustworthy and credible, without any spelling or grammatical errors
- Giving users the information they want and need in the place they want to see it
- Encouraging users to convert using evocative, persuasive language without the “hard sell”
Important Content Marketing Metrics to Keep an Eye On
This is exactly what it says on the tin – how many users have viewed a page. The more traffic, the merrier, in many cases, but if you see any odd spikes or patterns, they could be worth looking into further to make sure you’re attracting the right kind of audience.
Users (New, Returning, and Total)
The number of users on your site is also a good indicator of how engaging and relevant content is to your users. Good content won’t just attract new visitors to your site, but also keep old ones coming back for more!
Average Time on Page
The longer a user is on your site, the more likely it is that they’re engaging with your content! Whether it’s a video, a blog post, an FAQ section or an in-depth service page, you can quickly make a good estimation of how engaging your website content is based on the average time on the page.
Pages per Session
Like the average time on a page, the number of pages per session is indicative of content performance. The more pages a user clicks on, the more likely it is that they’ve enjoyed your content or found it useful!
Bounce rate is when a user lands on a site and then leaves immediately after, without clicking through to other pages or engaging with your content.
Of course, this one is the big metric all marketing channels are ultimately looking to increase. Conversion rate = your bottom line. The more conversions you have, the more money your business makes.
Content can be incredibly powerful in coaxing users down the purchase funnel to conversion. It can reassure, it can excite, it can create a sense of urgency, it can build trust, and it can set you apart from your competition.
While content is by no way the only factor affecting your conversion rate, you can often use conversion rate fluctuations to understand how particularly sales-focused content (like landing pages or contact forms) is performing.
Keyword reach tells SEOs and content writers how many keywords a certain piece of content or website is ranking for. Well-optimised content that is easily understood by search engines will have a higher keyword reach, meaning your site is more likely to be ranked, seen, and clicked on in the SERPs.
Of course, this list is by no means exhaustive! Depending on your campaign goals, industry landscape, and the things you want your content to do, the metrics you spend most time with will look very different.
Which Tools Should You Be Using to Measure Content Performance?
Like anything digital marketing, there are several different platforms or tools available to help you understand how content is performing.
GA is probably the most important tool you can use to measure content performance. It provides you with hundreds of metrics around how users interact with your website at all levels – from bounce rates to returning users down to individual user journeys and multi-faceted, multi-dimensional granular metrics.
GA will be able to tell you who is on your site, how they found it, and what they’re doing while they’re there – all vital to understanding content success.
Google Search Console
Google Search Console is very closely linked to Google Analytics, but they’re not actually the same thing. Google Analytics focuses on your website and the stats it throws up, while GSC looks primarily at how your site performs in search engines – it’s the little bridge in between that GSC can help you with.
There are plenty of content-focused metrics that GSC and Google Search Console Insights can help you with. In Google’s own words:
“Search Console Insights can help site owners, content creators and bloggers to better understand their content’s performance. For instance, it can help answer the following questions:
- What are your best-performing pieces of content?
- How are your new pieces of content performing?
- How do people discover your content across the web?
- What do people search for on Google before they visit your content?
- Which article refers users to your website and content?”
As we now know, all of these metrics are absolutely vital to help you understand exactly what kind of content is performing well, and therefore where to take your content strategy in the future.
When we’re looking at the SEO performance of content, tools like Ahrefs (you might also prefer SEMRush, SERanking, or another similar tool) are incredibly valuable.
These tools can show you the keywords your content is ranking for, how your competitors are performing, how your content has performed in search engines over time, the monetary value of your ranking content, which pages rank best for which keywords, and much, much more.
Start Understanding Your Content Performance
Here at Embryo we specialise in content and include innovative content approaches in almost all of our strategies. To learn more, please feel free to get in touch with our team by phone at 0161 327 2635 or email [email protected].