David Gould answers: “How Do You Measure Social Media Success With Google Analytics??”
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Hi, I’m David Gould with Vertical Measures and today’s question is: How do you measure social media success using Google Analytics? Now it’s an important question for someone who’s looking to move beyond superficial data, like the number of Facebook likes or Twitter followers you have, and get to the metrics that really drive your business.
So taking a look at Analytics, the place to start is in the Social menu under Traffic Sources. On the Social Sources page you can quickly see how much traffic is being driven via social media. Each social platform is listed with visitation stats so you can see which social efforts are actually bringing users to your site.
Under Pages you can see which specific pages on your site are getting traction from social referrals. This can be good, for example, if you’re promoting an event registration, you can see which social channels are getting users to that registration page. Likewise, this can help you pair your social media efforts with specific pages or kinds of pages. For example, you may find that Twitter is the main traffic driver for your blog posts, but that Google+ performs better for product pages.
And finally, in the conversions report, you can see which social referred visitors are converting. This requires that you have goals set up in Analytics, but it’s probably the most crucial part of measuring social media success. Yes it’s nice to get visitors on your site, but at the end of the day you want to convert them, whether that’s buying a product, filling out a contact form, subscribing to an email list.
If you get 1,000 visitors from Facebook but none of them convert, then that probably isn’t the social media success that it might seem if you just looked at site traffic. So watching conversions is key. And the best part is, if you’ve set up values for your goals, then you can see the real dollar value of social media conversions. This can let you know not only what is successful but where and how much to focus future resources on social media.
Now, obviously, this just touches on what’s possible with Google Analytics and social media. So I’ll add some links below to additional references, but this’ll give you a good starting point for measuring your social media successes in a meaningful way.