Although relatively a new phenomenon, social media has become a significant source of website traffic. Social Media describes online technologies and practices used by people to share experiences, opinions, and insights through the use of images, videos, audio, and text. Social networks, blogs, micro-blogs, video sharing networks, and image sharing networks make up much of the online social media destinations used today. Other, more familiar, social networks include websites such as forums and instant messaging. Social media analytics are a set of tools that are used to measure the activity across social media networks. But social media analytics is young, and not many people know where to start. These tips can help you effectively gather and analyze social media analytics.
- Understand what needs to be tracked
It is most important to understand and decide what needs to be tracked, as you can’t conquer what you don’t understand. Understand if you want to track how people are sharing your website or if you want to track a social media campaign, or the trends that are related to a particular social media phenomenon. Each of these requires a different focus and a different set of tools. For instance, if you are going to track social media website engagement, then it is necessary to focus on traffic statistics.
- Optimize on the current analytics software
Most of these analytics tools can track a large amount of data, but they are usually not intended for the tracking of social media data. There are, however a few ways to optimize your analytics software for social media.
- Social Media Metrics Plugin – An extension that adds a social media information layer to Google Analytics.
- Set up particular campaigns for social media – Most analytics software has custom campaigns to make it easy to track specific events.
- Rearrange dashboards and set up email reports – To get specific information on social media, have traffic stats from top social media websites emailed to you so you can see it all in one place.
- Add new tools
Adding on more social media analytics tools to the existing tools can help you get started to track analytics related to social media better. The other analytic that can be included are
- Xinureturns – provides a great dashboard overview of your website’s standing in social media.
- PostRank – provides detailed information on Tweets, Stumbles, diggs, and FriendFeed all in one place. It’s best for blogs and websites with a lot of content.
- SocialToo – is a comprehensive tool for creating social surveys and tracking social stats. It also will send you a daily email.
- Amass your analytics
Aggregate your analytics information, as there is no time to look at all of the tools. There are a lot of tools for gathering social media information, but one place doesn’t have everything you need. As there is no single tool that will bring this information together, building a spreadsheet may be best for playing with the numbers.
- Evaluate and Engage
The actual analysis is the most import part. It takes a lot of dedication to the art of web analytics to understand how each variable affects website traffic and user engagement. By looking at the data in one place and comparing the information, you will be able to pick up on trends.
Analytic metrics provide insight into the world of consumers unlike ever before. Such tools can be used to proactively engage with consumers or potential consumers. So take the time to find great tools and to understand how each of the social media levers affects traffic and analytics data.
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