Publishers have a great opportunity in that it will never be easier to grow their audience. It’s not as easy today as it was yesterday. And it won’t be as easy tomorrow as it is today.
With every passing minute, the digital publishing landscape is getting more competitive. And, many publishers are still relying on traditional website analytics. But, in order to keep up with ever-increasing competition, publishers need to produce content that resonates with readers on a consistent basis. To do that, you need to go beyond page views and bounce rate.
Publishers need to measure content by different standards than other websites. Traditional website analytics was never meant to be used in a publishing environment. Therefore, the data is either missing or not presented in a format that adds value.
There are three high-level metrics that every publisher should be tracking on a daily basis. These metrics give an overview of everything a publisher needs to know to measure the effectiveness of their content on driving audience engagement.
3 Content Success Metrics for Publishers
#1 Engagement Volume
The first content success metric is the number of readers looking at each piece of content. Evaluating the number of reads is a simple way to see which stories are getting the most attention.
By measuring the volume of reads, you can potentially uncover patterns and trends in the topics that are going viral in the moment. Engagement volume can show insights such as popular authors, channels, topics, interests, and subtopics within those interests.
#2 Engagement Quality
Quantity of views is one thing, the quality of those views is another. Both are critical to getting a sense of audience engagement.
Tracking engagement quality, one of NativeAI’s custom publishing metrics, gives publishers a single, universal metrics to gauge the quality of each pageview. Pure volume doesn’t signal content success, as volume can be achieved in a variety of ways. A piece could have been mentioned by a celebrity, or linked from another high-traffic site - or the headline might be click-bait, etc.. There are many different reasons an article could get a lot of traffic. But, that doesn’t mean that traffic really engaged.
While it’s important for publishers to get a lot of traffic, they also need the audience to engage and become loyal readers.Engagement Quality provides the fastest insight into the best topics, interests, channels, and authors.
#3 Readership Loyalty
When publishers invest in high-quality content, and rely on data-driven publishing decisions, they can accumulate a growing community of loyal readers. Data and metrics that deliver insights about returning readers are extremely important for growth. Retaining readers means you can gather more data, providing even deeper insights into their interests and behaviors over time.
Measuring readership loyalty can go beyond just tracking returning vs. new visitors. It includes tracking return visitor interests, their devices, geographic location, and referral channels. You can gain valuable insights by measuring loyal readers engagement by story, author, interests, and topics as well.
The Content Metrics That Matter
Publishing high-quality content should be the lowest bar your team sets. In order to be successful in 2018 and beyond, teams must dig into their audience. By tapping into your reader's behavior, developing your various segments, and regularly enhancing your content, your team will generate long-lasting, incredibly beneficial work.
Logistically, your team can improve on the ROI of your content. With a more strategic, data-driven content strategy, teams can execute better content, sooner. But to accomplish that, publishers need to phase out the use of basic website analytics, and switch to a platform that will provide these deeper insights in real-time.
With the ability to dig into reader preferences and desires, publishers can ensure they're creating meaningful connections with their readers, when it will resonate with them the most. To learn more about NativeAI and get a demo, click here.