By now, every business should know that content marketing is key to building trust and obtaining new leads in today’s competitive digital market.
Content marketing is exactly what it sounds like – you let your content market for you. Unlike traditional marketing, content marketing doesn’t directly correlate to money, rather it is a way to build trust over time with your audience until they are ready to convert.
Over 91% of b2b businesses employ a content marketing strategy (1), usually by working with a B2B content marketing agency. But how many of those businesses know how to effectively measure their performance?
Like all other forms of marketing, tracking content marketing KPIs is essential. Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs for short, help you accurately track the success of your content marketing efforts. They can also give insight on ways to improve your profits.
Don’t go at your content marketing strategy blindly! Here are 10 content marketing KPIs you can start tracking today.
How many unique (and returning) visits is your content getting? Knowing which content is generating your site the most traffic can give great insight into the content type your audience wants to see. It can also help you plan future content that aligns with their interests.
Something important to note here is to be careful when tracking both paid and organic traffic. Paid ads and social media promotions may skew your traffic data!
Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who leave your website without taking any action. The lower the bounce rate, the more engaging your content is and the better overall experience your visitors are having.
If your content is getting a lot of traffic but has a high bounce rate, chances are it’s not what your audience was expecting. Whether it’s presented in the wrong way, the title doesn’t match the content or it simply isn’t what your audience is interested in, tracking your bounce rate can help you figure out what’s wrong and how you can fix it for maximum audience engagement.
You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink. Sure, getting a lot of traffic is great and all, but unless visitors are actually taking the time to read and engage with your content, it isn’t of much use to you – or them for that matter!
The more time spent on your page, the more likely it is that the visitor really consumed your content.
A high bounce rate may seem like cause for concern that your content isn’t compelling enough, but when paired with a high time on page it paints a fuller story. Your content is engaging and being consumed. However, visitors aren’t exploring your site further than that one page, so more incentive to check out the rest of your site’s content is required. This is a perfect example of why KPIs shouldn’t be tracked in isolation!
Time on-page is a great KPI to see how long your visitors spend looking at your content, but do you know how much of your content viewers are actually consuming?
Google Analytics “Scroll Depth Percentage” feature lets you see exactly this. Having the ability to see where your readers are dropping off will help you to understand their engagement with your content and the ideal spots to place links and call to actions.
Social Media is the “word of mouth” of the digital age.
Though it’s difficult to track how your social shares, comments, likes, and following affects your revenue in the long run, they give great insight into who and on what platforms you should be pushing your content towards, create exposure for your brand, and provides a platform for your audience to connect with you.
If people are linking to your content, you’re on the right track! Not only does it mean that people are interested in what you have to say, but each inbound link also exposes your content to a wider audience and increases your credibility to both search engines and viewers alike.
While your click-through rate from search listing is important, you should also be tracking the click-through rate of internal links within your content. Tracking internal links to product pages, or other parts of the funnel lets you see what actions your readers are taking!
Though conversions in the monetary sense can be difficult to attribute to content marketing, there are plenty of other conversion metrics you can (and should!) track.
A conversion is any desired action a user can take. This could be anything from signing up to your email list to completing a purchase. Some examples of conversions in content marketing are:
You can set up goals and events in Google Analytics to help track conversions and leads. By tracking your leads’ session activity you can see where in the funnel they drop off and use this information to improve your website and avoid as many future drop-offs.
Content marketing has been proven to generate over three times as many leads as outbound marketing and costs 62% less! (2) – so it makes sense that many businesses are implementing it as a lead generation tactic!
Keep track of the leads generated from your content marketing efforts so you know what sales can be attributed to content. This is a great metric to determine your overall success in content but you should also keep track of the channels these leads are coming from and what content they’re consuming for future reference.
Customer Lifetime Value refers to the amount of money you can expect to generate from a single customer over their customer lifetime.
A high customer lifetime value is key to sustainable growth in the long term. You want to make sure your marketing efforts aren’t just focused on gaining new customers, but also on growing bonds and nurturing relationships with your existing customers.
Unlike other forms of marketing, content marketing is a long-term strategy. Yet, like all other forms of marketing, it still needs to be tracked with KPIs to measure performance and help aid in important marketing decision-making.
These KPIs are a great place to start, but depending on your content marketing goals you may want to track different metrics. The key idea here really is to just track the KPIs that you’re actually trying to influence. Don’t track your email subscription list if you aren’t planning on starting an email campaign!) don’t waste your time tracking metrics you don’t plan on using.
A good content marketing consultant will help you set clear KPIs and track your progress.