Data can be extremely valuable in content marketing. Looking at the right metrics demystifies its performance. However, there are many different types of data points within the realm of content analytics, and some matter more than others. To help enterprise content teams focus on the most critical metrics for high-performing content, we’ve put together this quick guide on killer metrics you should be monitoring.
What Is High-Performing Content?
First, let’s talk about what high-performing content is. It can mean many things, but generally, it’s content that delivers ROI (return on investment). Content that’s high performing can mean it ranks well organically, drives lots of traffic, or plays a part in conversions. All these wins can lead to revenue, stronger customer relationships, and more awareness for your brand.
So, how can you evaluate how you’re performing against your content marketing goals? Let’s look at the metrics that matter.
10 Metrics that Matter to Distinguish High-Performing Content
Before we launch into the metrics, there are a few essential things to share. Data analysis of your content shouldn’t be a heavy lift. The data you need to analyze lives in different places, and in these cases, it can be hard to get true insights. To be a data-driven content team, you need a central hub that aggregates data from multiple sources into one 360-degree view. So, make sure you have this in place; it will make your life so much easier!
Getting traffic to your website is a tenet of content marketing. Audiences find you through search, social media, and other avenues. They likely don’t hit your home page first anymore. They are more likely to have a first interaction with your brand through a blog. Understanding the amount and quality of traffic generation from your content efforts is key to classifying it as high-performing.
Traffic is a must-have measure, and there are a few specific areas to dig deep into:
- Users: This is the total number of unique users that visit the page.
- Pageviews: This is the total number of times users viewed a specific page.
- Unique pageviews: If one user visits a page multiple times, this metric combines all those into one.
All these metrics are quantifiable. They are numbers that show volume. You can easily compare different pages. You should also look for trends in these numbers. Are they going up or down? Those trends can indicate the topic is becoming more popular or losing traction.
Other areas of traffic are more qualitative, and we’ll cover them in the engagement section.
Do you know if your content is contributing to conversions? It’s fundamental to have this intelligence. Of course, it also depends on what a conversion is for you.
There are conversions related to downloading an ebook or whitepaper or requesting a demo or consultation. These are easy to attribute because they require a form submission. Other conversions are direct sales from content, such as clicking a link to buy from a post or page.
Metrics for this category include:
- Goal completions: If you have specific Google Analytics goals, it will track them for you. You can also set a monetary figure for those.
- Form completions: These are all leads from gated resources or landing pages. You can also track these to see if the initial conversion turned into a sale.
- Referrals to eCommerce sales: Look at what pages have referrals or clicks to the eCommerce page on your website.
When you create strong engagement with your content, you create a connection with your audience. That experience can transform into purchases, loyalty, and advocacy. Metrics around engagement also tell you what topics and formats of content most resonate with your buyers.
Metrics to focus on here are:
- Time on page: The longer they linger, the more likely they are to consume all the content and stay on your website. Be sure to monitor this for every page. If the time on page starts to drop off on what was once high-performing content, it could indicate a need to update the content.
- Bounce rate: Bounce rate is a tricky metric. High bounce rate is not always a signal that the content isn’t hitting the mark. You need context. Some content may be short and acting as part of the funnel to conversion. It’s another data point to watch. If bounce rates rise without explanation, the content may need a refresh.
- Social media engagement: Social media is likely your biggest content distribution channel. Measuring engagement is about how readers interact with a post. Liking, sharing, and commenting all represent engagement, and they are markers of high-performing content. However, what matters the most is clicks. Did the person click on the content and read it? That’s what you want.
Next is the category of SEO performance. You want to get found online and be the best answer to the person’s query. Mastering SEO requires consistency in parameters, best practices on technical aspects, quality content, and proper formatting for easy readability.
The best metric for determining how your content contributes to SEO is SERP (search engine ranking performance). You start with a baseline and a keyword master document. The baseline is how your domain currently ranks for keywords most relevant to your audience and organization.
From the baseline, you should check rankings every 30 days for movement. Track this continuously to see if you’re ranking higher or falling off. Content that consistently ranks well is certainly high-performing.
How Do You Measure Content Performance?
With these 10 metrics, you can look at multiple aspects of content performance. They each add to the story and provide different insights for your team. This data then becomes actionable, as you’ll know what content has the most views, engagement, and conversions and what ranks highest. You then have a recipe for success that will impact future content.
Ready to measure performance better? Then you should be looking into a content marketing platform. You can try out ours today for free.