using analytics to improve your online business and seo
Using online analytical tools as part of your regular online business routine is a great way to not only view and measure your online results and profits, but it is also an important activity to your business if you are wanting to grow it through increasing traffic to your site(s), compare yourself against competitors in your niche, make sure your website(s) remain easily accessible and viewable without errors or issues, and make sure that your webpages load properly and quickly so people attracted to your sites don't leave because of performance or viewing issues.
So let's discuss some of these available tools and what their benefits to your business are starting with Social Blade. Social Blade is primarily, a statistical analysis and future business projection website for people that create monetized YouTube videos. In recent times, it has also started providing statistics for "Twitch" and "Instagram" as well. Once your "Channels" are registered and visible on Social Blade, you can view statistics on your estimated earnings, views, and revenue and viewing projections into the future.
It also is a good comparative tool that you can use to see how you are comparing to other channel owners in your niche and from an overall perspective, you can see where you are in comparison to all other channel owners in terms of videos loaded, subscribers, views and revenues. Enter any other Channel owner name and you can view their results as well. But wait, there is more on this site. Social Blade offers both a Forum and a Blog site as well. Don't overlook these additional two services provided both with respect to using the site to learn more about what is happening among your peers, but you can also use it to advertise yourself and your channel a bit if you aren't blatantly trying to promote yourself there.
YouTube Analytics are also a very useful tool. You can keep tabs on how many views your videos are getting, view and respond to comments made by viewers of your videos, see what percentage of your videos are actually being watched - e.g., are viewers watching your creations through to the end or just part way through, you can view earnings histories by video creation, you can see what devices your videos are being viewed from (computers, tablets, smart phones, etc., where people viewing your videos are located, how many and which videos are being shared with others and much more. Go through these analytical services to better understand where issues are so you can strategize how to improve things. For example, if people are dropping off early rather than viewing your entire videos, you become aware and can make changes to correct the issues.
Google Analytics is a very comprehensive toolset that you can integrate with all your online properties such as websites, blog sites, YouTube, etc. It also ties in directly with Google AdSense so you can also view your AdSense revenue statistics. To use it with your websites and blog sites, you will need to have a Google Analytics account and you will need to drop in some custom code that Google Analytics provides into each web page that you want Google to track.
Once setup, you will be able to get all kinds of traffic information on the daily activity around each of your webpages such as what percentages are being viewed by computers, tablets or mobile devices; where are the people located that are viewing your pages, where do they go to once they leave your landing page, what is your "Bounce Rate" (a high Bounce Rate means they go to your landing page and then don't go anywhere else on your site - they just leave). How much time are they spending on your pages (note: a high bounce rate coupled with a short average time on the page is usually indicative of some sort of page problems occurring such as slow loading speeds for the page, the page isn't rendering properly, etc.); how are they finding your webpages - i.e., what are your traffic sources to the page; and much more. Google Analytics is a highly recommended tool for you to be using as part of your site.
The next set of analytical tools to look at is Google Webmaster Tools and it's "Search Console. Here, Google tries to help you identify at depth any problems it has found with your site or sites. This is also a toolset that affords you the opportunity of pro-actively sending more information about your site to Google so you can build a better relationship with them and their search engine. This toolset will provide you with detailed information on your web pages such as where there are broken hyperlinks on your site, where there are coding errors, where there are problems with page loading speeds, where your meta data (Title, Description and Tags) are inconsistent or duplicated with other pages on your site, where you are using non-compliant code for mobile device displays such as certain java scripts, and much more. If you want to rank highly or continue to rank highly in Google search engine results, you would be wise to be accessing this toolset regularly to ensure the technical quality of your site is being maintained.
Another very good analytical site to check out is Pingdom. Pingdom has a tool that allows you to enter any URL and it will then test it by accessing it from various locations around the world. You will learn how fast your pages are loading and you will learn why pages are loading slowly if there appear to be loading issues. Pingdom will tell you what and how many java script callouts are occurring during your page load, how fat your webpage is, where each page load is encountering errors and what those errors are, what are the parts of your page load that are taking the most time, etc. This is a very good toolset for debugging webpages to ensure that they are loading at their best possible speeds.
These are some of the key tools that I use to regularly analyze my online properties and by using them, I have been able to steadily improve the technical quality of my holdings which have been contributing to ever improving customer site statistics which in turn, has helped to both improve traffic and build greater site revenues. So be sure not to overlook the use of online analytical tools in your own business.
By Dan Grijzenhout - December 20, 2016
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