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Archive for September, 2016

5 Reports Every Small Business Needs to Run in Google Analytics

Small businesses face a distinct set of challenges. Knowing which reports to run in Google Analytics, Google’s free visitor data reporting tool, makes it easier to overcome these.

 

A slow-growing customer base is one challenge. Not having a large enough budget to invest in marketing on every social media platform is another. Here are 5 reports you should be running in Google Analytics monthly if you run a small business:

1.     Acquisition overview

This should be every business’ first port of call in GA. The default view shows a pie chart showing which of your channels (Organic Search, Social, Email, Referrals and others) bring what percentage of your total website traffic.

You also see a breakdown of daily website sessions and conversion rates for your selected goal (you can change the focus goal using the drop-down list under ‘goal option’ near the top of the page).

The acquisition overview in Google Analytics helps small businesses monitor growth. Using the date range compare feature, you can see whether your audience has grown month on month and can identify the top-performing and worst-performing channels. From here, you can strategize accordingly, redirecting focus and budget wherever it makes the most sense for high ROI.

2.     Conversions by geographic location

If you provide services or products for a national or global customer base, gathering location data monthly will help you see where you are getting the best conversion rates. If you find, for example, that one country has far better ratios of payments to number of visits, you can target lookalike audiences in this location and double down on your most profitable regions.

To get this data, click on ‘Audience’ in the left-hand navigation panel in the dashboard view of GA for your website. From here, click on ‘Geo’, then ‘Location’. Assuming you’ve set up conversions for your website (there’s a handy guide to this here), you can find your conversion rates by city, country and even continent.

3.     Social overview

Small businesses can get a lot of mileage out of social media, from acquiring new leads to growing brand awareness. The ‘social overview’ page (that you can find beneath Acquisition > Social > Overview) helps you determine which of your social media accounts are bringing you the most traffic. The main view also provides metrics on total conversions from social as well as conversions in which a social channel was the last step prior to conversion.

This is a helpful tool to use, especially when you are running a social campaign over an extended period and want to compare conversions to a pre-campaign period to estimate effectiveness.

4.     Site content: All pages

As you grow your small business and add new landing pages (whether they are root domain level pages or conversion-centred blog posts), you need a way to work out which pages are drawing the most traffic.

The ‘Site content: All pages’ view provides this data and much more. You can see metrics such as average time on page and bounce rate (the percentage of people who don’t click through to another page). Low time on page and high bounce rates are two indicators that you may need to invest in creating higher-value content that gives viewers an incentive to linger longer.

5.     Top landing pages

Landing pages (the first pages visitors to your site reach) need to be structured around core goals (such as mailing list signups) so you can draw visitors into your sales funnel. The ‘Landing Pages’ view under Behaviour > Site Content > Landing Pages, shows you the most-visited pages on your site by default. This will help you to prioritise which pages to optimise with giveaways, sign-up forms and other lead acquisition tools.

Google Analytics is a powerful tool though it can be overwhelming to navigate for small business owners who have limited experience in digital marketing. If you need assistance in growing your business with data-backed digital marketing strategy, contact Go Fish today.

7 Sound Strategies to Maximize Social Media Engagement

Social media serves vital marketing functions when managed well, from growing brand awareness to acquiring leads and maintaining customer relationships. If your brand can own high social media engagement, this creates a strong trust signal, too. Here are 7 strategies to maximize your social media engagement:
1. Ask your audience questions
Businesses starting out on social media often make the mistake of talking at followers. Cialdini’s 6 principles of persuasion include ‘reciprocity’ for a reason. Asking your Facebook, Twitter or Instagram audience questions gives followers a direct opportunity to engage with your content.
Make questions relevant to your product or service. Questions such as ‘which do you prefer and why?’ comparing two products can yield useful voice of consumer insights as a bonus.
2. Find out the best times to post for higher engagement
In-built analytics tools on social media such as Facebook Insights give you data on when your audience is most active. Use this data to schedule posts for when they will reach the most eyeballs.

Also, test different times to work out when your posts receive the most engagement. For Facebook marketing, SumoRank by Buzzsumo gives useful data on what types of post have received the best engagement for a specified Facebook page over the past month. Use this data to hone your strategy.
3. Leverage different content types to find what gets the most interaction from your audience
It’s no secret that video has become a major medium for social media marketing, especially Facebook’s live video feature. To truly maximize social media engagement, test different content types (images with separate links, link-only posts, videos and Twitter polls). Produce more content of the type that consistently entices the most engagement.
4. Ask for engagement actions in other marketing channels
An additional way to maximize engagement on social media is making your marketing channels work together. If you send out a blog mailing list, for example (as marketing influencers like Neil Patel and Jon Morrow do), ask readers to share your post when finished. Test multiple placements of this CTA to engage on social. For example, you could test including a concise P.S. that politely asks the recipient to share the post when they’ve finished reading. Remember to hyperlink to your relevant social media page.
5. Respond to social media mentions and comments
Perhaps you would think this is obvious, but many small businesses (and even larger companies) either take forever to reply to social media comments or never do. When retail giant Zara was embroiled in a scandal involving accusations of ripping off indie artists’ designs, their social media accounts were flooded with negative comments. Little comment handling was in place.

Avoid bad PR and respond to comments in a timely and professional manner and new visitors will be encouraged to engage and participate too.
6. Run social media contests
This is an absolutely crucial way to boost your social media engagement. People who are already interested in your product or service will be drawn to giveaways. A creative contest entry mechanism, one that appeals to your audience’s interests and passions, will maximize engagement further. For example, a startup offering coaching for aspiring authors could run a short fiction contest that invites followers to share their creative, expressive talents.
7. Invite user-generated content
Following on from the pointer above, invite user-generated content. You don’t have to be running a contest to encourage your followers to post memes, quotes or other content that incorporates your brand. You could ask your audience to share their favourite quotes on a topic relevant to your niche, for example. On Twitter, you could RT your favourites which your audience in turn will share. On Facebook, you could turn each quote into a branded picture quote and mention the contributor.
To maximize engagement on social media, you need to create a participatory space and populate your accounts with fresh, engagement-worthy content. Speak to Go Fish today about our online marketing and development and how we can help you maximize social growth.

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