As small business owners, finding the keys to our customers interests (and ultimately their hearts) always stems from small wins accumulated over time. Little victories that we experience that indicate we’re on the right path. These small wins show us progress on the road to accomplishing our grandiose goals and can help keep us motivated on the way to getting there.
It is because of this level of importance that we at 20spokes have decided to have a “small wins series” in which we post case studies of work and share the learnings that we get from them. The first case is an analysis of social media.
Why are we getting less paying customers this quarter than last?
Who should we be marketing to, and when should we be marketing to them?
These are all questions that are not uncommon to the small business owner. We are constantly trying to figure out who we should be reaching out to, and how we should be reaching them. There are, of course, many methods for tracking and determining the best ways to do so – Google Analytics, heat maps, A/B testing, etc. But a powerful method that is not mentioned much is what’s called a “Cohort Analysis”.
If you’ve done all of this, then you’re probably seeing an increase in traffic to your site! Congratulations!
But what does it all mean?
How do you know which blogs really captivated the audience and which were duds?
Did you generate more traffic to a specific blog because the topic was interesting, or because the title was captivating?
To find out the answer to these questions and more, here are 3 important metrics to look to in your Google Analytics.
If you’ve ever seen (or have been lucky enough to be inside) a plane cockpit, you’ve seen the mass amounts of dials, meters, odometers, etc. that the pilot is looking at. Just by getting an overall visual of that dashboard in front of him, he can make sure that everything is running smoothly, and the plane can move forward. If there’s a problem, he can see from the overview where the issue is. Then he can quickly fix it, and get the plane safely to its destination.
Now imagine that the same pilot has a sidebar instead of a dashboard. Every time he needs to monitor the plane’s progress, he needs to click each of the subheadings and drop-downs to find the information he’s looking for. Sounds pretty silly right?
But that’s what most of us do when we log into our Google Analytics each time. We log into our account, browse through the sidebar looking for important information, and spend a lot of time trying to find data that will help us learn more about what is and isn’t working.
If this sounds like what you’re currently doing in your Google Analytics, we have 3 reasons why a Dashboard will help you learn more in less time.
Ok, so you’ve done everything to get your pins to the top of Pinterest search, but you still haven’t increased your Pinterest traffic.
More people are seeing your pins, so why aren’t they clicking through to your site?
First, we must remember a key principle to online marketing – people only care about what’s in it for them.
Of course that’s not completely true for everybody, but you should always think in those terms when trying to understand why something is or isn’t happening.
The best business Pinterest pages – Nordstrom for example – are full of deals, giveaways, and in store displays based on Pinterest activity.
I thought as I was reviewing one of my client’s social analytics. The major social media channels – Facebook and Twitter – were where they had seen most of their social traffic coming in. This time, however, was different. The traffic was coming from a brand new source that I had yet to tap into or truly understand – Pinterest.
Yes, Pinterest. That social media channel that you may still be overlooking in favor of Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, continues to grow. Fast.
Since then, I have learned a lot about how to use Pinterest as a way to generate traffic as well as help build a brand. One of the most important being the value of getting your pins to the top of Pinterest search results. So, I wanted to share with you some findings about the Pinterest search engine to be considered in future pinning.
Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc. are constantly crawling your pages and trying to interpret what they mean.
Unfortunately sometimes information cannot be interpreted, or is interpreted incorrectly. And information that is not interpreted correctly, is information that is not indexed correctly.
This can be a big problem for both your site and search engines. After all, search engines are looking for the most relevant and authoritative content to direct their customers to. If that happens to be your site, search engines miss out on an opportunity to add value to their customers. Because of this, search engines will reward sites who make it as easy as possible to interpret their content – one of the ways to do this is through structured data.
Why aren’t people converting?!
It can be incredibly frustrating for any online marketer to see this happening. You work hard (really hard) to get people to come to your site. SEO, SEM, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, you finally get them all humming and driving people to the site, but…then…nothing. No movement down the funnel, no signups, no conversions, no revenue.
What’s wrong with these people?! Don’t they get it?!
As long as the message that you used to get people to the site is consistent with what your site actually is, (you can’t promise free kittens, then take people to a site that sells windows) people probably do get it – they just don’t get your site.
Why don’t they get it? One of the best ways to tell is by setting up a Heat Map.
And we’re back! In case you missed the first part of this mini-series, where I try to assert the value of creating integration tests for a web application, you can check it out here. In this part, I’ll guide you through setting up the tests using Capybara and Rspec, a few examples, and finally some ideas.
We start off with adding the appropriate gems to our Gemfile:
group :development, :test do gem “rspec-rails" gem “capybara” end
There it is. The dreaded empty page and that cursor…blink, blink, blink…basically asking you, “so…what do you got?”
Your answer this time? “No clue.”
Time for some inspiration!
There are, of course, many ways to try to come up with blogging topics. My personal favorite is checking Twitter, Feedly, and other news sources to give you an idea of what’s out there right now that you can write about. But there are still thousands of articles to choose from, how do you decide which will be the topic of your next blog post?
First, I would suggest selecting 5 topics or so that you’re passionate and knowledgeable about. Then, to maximize the value of the post you write, it’s time to do some keyword research!
There are some tools that you can pay for that will give you this information, but in my experience, none of them are that much better than using Google’s keyword planner for free. So I’m going to give you the step-by-step guide to using Google’s Keyword Research tools.