5 Ways To Optimize Your WordPress Blog With Google Analytics Data

Google analytics to optimize your WordPress blog

Once you are done adding Google Analytics to WordPress blog for tracking its performance, the next step is to start taking effective decisions. There comes a time for every digital publisher when they don’t see their desired results. There can be various problems like increased bounce rate, lesser engagement, and probably – poor rankings in the search result. Google Analytics makes way for insights that. The data present in the Google Analytics can certainly help you optimize your WordPress website.

Consider these 5 ways to optimize your WordPress blog once the Google Analytics is added:

1 – Installing plugins 

Plugins serve as a handy tool for any WordPress blog with Google Analytics. No matter if you are a Google Analytics Standard user or get Google Analytics 360 for your business. There are plenty of analytics plugins available on the market. These plugins heavily determine the growth and scope of your WordPress blog site. It does the task of collecting and delivering your website visitors’ data. It also includes reader behavior data that aids in optimizing your WordPress Blog site’s performance.

Google Analytics plugins can help you understand the audience’s expectations and reader’s skewness towards a specific type of content. You can choose best analytics plugins for your business from the below-listed ones.

WP Statistics

WP Statistics helps you track the stats for your WordPress website without depending on external or third party services. Few of these properties will certainly help your WordPress Blog site.

  • It uses MaxMind GeoLite2 technology that relays in-depth geographical data.
  • Database IP address hashing to protect user’s privacy.
  • Plenty of shortcodes available for data that is specific to a certain page or post on your WordPress Blog site.
  • It lets you export the collected data to your local machine. Supported file formats are XML, CSV or TSV files.
  • Records stats on exclusions. 

 Google Analytics WD

A fully responsive Google Analytics WD is one of the most user-friendly WordPress plugins that offer a lot of advantageous features. To monitor your website’s analytics with Google Analytics WD, you simply need to validate your Google account by adding your GA Code to the website.

  • Simple authentication by adding the tracking code
  • Tracking reports overview
  • Metrics comparison
  • Option to email or export the generated reports
  • Custom management for Goals and Filters 

Google Analytics by MonsterInsights

Google Analytics by MonsterInsights is one of the most popular WordPress plugins that lets you

  • Easy installation through Google Analytics API integration.
  • Comes with a universal Google Analytics tracking code.
  • Let you track pages of search results and 404 pages.
  • Plenty of options to track outbound links and downloads.
  • An option to anonymize IP’s and making way for sterner privacy regulations.

2 – Identifying high-traction content

There is a way in Google Analytics to find which content pulls a maximum audience. You can also find the retention rate available for readers. Such findings will lead you to pick the right posts for promotion.

Finding out such information in Google Analytics (GA)

In Google Analytics, navigate to Behavior and Site Content to locate your primary source of content data. This section will help you identify the content that drives the most traffic, garners high Page Views and also the user engagement.

Navigate to ‘Site Content’, expand on ‘All Pages’. A list of each page along with your posts will unfold. This also shows how your posts are performing based on different metrics. The below metrics are to be considered:

 

Pageviews: The total number of Pageviews for the selected time period will reflect in numbers below the first column of Pageviews.
Unique Pageviews: The numbers in unique Pageviews will either be equal or less than the Pageviews. It is because the Unique Pageviews will not count those visits when the same person visits the same page again after the first time.
Average time on page: This number will give you the idea of how much of an average time a set of users are spending on a particular page.
Entrances: The total number of times your readers entered your blog site with a particular page.
Bounce rate: Bounce rate is one of the defining factors to measure audience engagement. This is the percentage of single-page visits. The lesser this rate, the higher is the content engagement.
Exits: This represents the percentage of readers who leave your Blog site via a particular page that you select.
Page Value: Page Value is defined by Revenue + Goal value / unique Pageviews. This is something that shows you the value of each page in monetary terms.

Now, narrow down your goals. This can be either for gaining higher Pageviews, Visitors, Conversions (in a blog this will be subscriptions) etc. Sure, you can sort the column by simply clicking on the tab which will reflect data either in descending or ascending order.

And for the decision-making, you can analyze the report to check which content has received the high number of Pageviews. Scroll through the data and interpret the same to conclude with any observed pattern or theme. And once you identify such motif, put your efforts to capitalize on it. For example, if your data reflects that majority of your readers are skewed towards listicles than ‘how to’ posts, focus on the prior. This will retain your readers and convert them to a blog subscriber. This will lead us towards the next point we are going to discuss – Setting up Goals to track conversions.

3 – Setting up Goals 

Google Analytics Goal tracking for WordPress blog site will let you track your website’s traffic and user’s behavior with advanced monitoring. It can also let you track conversions on your website.

Google Analytics lets you track goals by following these four ways:

Destination URLs

A set of goals are accomplished when a visitor reaches a certain page. You can set a URL such that when triggered upon user’s visit, it marks the Goal ‘complete’.

For instance – after reading a blog or two, the website visitor is shown a pop-up — ‘subscribe now’. And once the user fills up the subscription form and clicks on ‘submit’, a new page URL is triggered on a Thank You page. Providing such dedicated URL will help you to define a complete action.

Time duration

When you aim to gauge the reader’s engagement in your WordPress Blog, Time Duration is an important factor. For such goals, you need to set a time that would mark the Goal ‘complete’.

Suppose, you’ve written a blog with an ideal read time of 05:00 minutes, set the duration of 5:00 minutes as a goal. Any reader who spends above 5:00 minutes on a particular blog page will complete your Goal.

Number of pages visited per session

If you aim to have reader’s retention on your website as a goal then you must try and gauge the number of pages visited by a user per session. To conclude on the number of sessions visited, you can just put the number for pages visited and choose from the options – equal to, or less than, or greater than, to determine the completion of a goal.

Events goals Google Analytics

Here you can create events and then set them as goals. Events are little complex than the above mention three types of goals.

With events, you can track any user interactive element or module. For instance – A click on a button, pressing, downloading a pdf content, right click, etc.

Implement Subscriptions tracking mechanism

For any WordPress Blog site publisher, subscription stays as the primary conversion. Most of the WordPress bloggers track the subscriptions with the help of an email delivery service. You can choose from plenty of such email delivery service like MailChimp, SeninBlue, etc. But it is best to track a few things internally on the website itself.

Unfortunately, Google Analytics doesn’t allow you to do so. Not in an easy way for sure! This is because it is considered as an outbound click by Google Analytics.

So I’ve set this up using Events and Goals but have eliminated the use of the plugin to handle it manually that allows utmost customization. This doesn’t mean that there are no plugins for this. But since I find it relatively simple and in complete control, I’d recommend keeping this code in the footer.php file.


jQuery("#mc-embedded-subscribe").click(function(){
_gaq.push(['_trackEvent', 'Subscribe', 'Subscribed', '']);
window._tfa = window._tfa || [];
_tfa.push({notify:"action", name: 'conversion'});
})

This code triggers a new action in Google Analytics as soon as someone subscribes to your blog. The use of jQuery is to simplify the calling function. You can also opt to do this in raw JS.
The above code sets the following event:
Category > “Subscribe” and the Action > “Subscribed”.
You can consider this action to use it for creating a new goal – just in the same manner how it works for outbound clicks:

This will let you include a Goal in Google Analytics report.

For example, if you sort the landing pages report based on the conversion rate of a particular subscription goal (as set above), you can see which is the most effective post was in recent past.

 

4 – Make the most out of Yoast SEO with HTML Improvements

Bloggers would want their WordPress blog site to rank higher in the search. Yoast SEO can find out and suggest you with SEO titles and Meta descriptions. It will show you if your data is either too long or short and make you aware of the duplicity if it exists.

Yoast is equipped with the “progress bar” that turns orange (indicating – bad) or green (indicating – good) based on the length of the text. Yoast HTML improvements indicate pages that need to be fixed.

To prevent errors in the future, make sure your ‘length progress bar’ in Yoast is green…

Conclusion:

These way, you can implement certain changes to scale-up your WordPress blog. Google Analytics can serve as a catalyst to reach your desired goals while effectively utilizing the current set of data. You can either choose to opt for plugin and solve your analytics dilemma or you can mix and match few of the points mentioned above. It is always best to measure the desired outcome and later on proceed by picking up right analytics tools.

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