More and more bloggers are becoming interested in their analytics. They are easy to track and there are so many helpful articles online to help you understand what you are looking at. However, there is a debate about whether traffic or engagement is more important to monitor.
So should I monitor traffic or engagement for my blog?
Every blogger I talk to has a slightly different idea of what they should monitor to reach their goals. So as with nearly everything in digital marketing, there is no straight forward answer to this question. However, from what I have discovered during my time in the blogging world, there are a few questions you can ask yourself to decide which is more valuable to you. So if you have been wondering what you should be tracking on your blog, ask yourself the following questions:
What type of content do you write?
It sounds harsh, but not a huge amount of people want to read all about you and your horse, and it is quite unlikely that they will be looking for this type of information on google. Visitors to your site will probably already know you through their social networks and have read your stuff before. They feel like they know you and enjoy following your story. They will probably interact with your posts, liking and commenting. If you write this type of content, you are probably best monitoring engagement with your content and strive to improve your engagement.
If you write more factual posts, people are more likely to find it via search engines. All of my most popular posts on EquiPepper are factual posts about equine conditions or new stories. They are regularly found on search engines by new visitors. These visitors are just looking for answers to their questions and rarely interact with the factual information they find. Therefore for these types of website you are better off measuring traffic.
However, chances are your blog will be a mixture of factual posts and updates from your life. So you will need to consider other things too.
What are your aims for your blog?
If you are blogging to meet and network with like minded people, then the best thing for you to monitor could be engagement. How many people from your network are reading and interacting with your blog posts? Are you also visiting and engaging with other bloggers? This will give you an idea of how well your content is appealing to your network.
If you are hoping to make your blog a success and generate an income, traffic is probably more important to you, as this is what advertisers and brands will want to know when considering working with you. Most of these relationships will be based on you reaching a high number of their target audience. So being able to show and talk about the traffic to your blog could be a very important bargaining tool.
What are you interested in?
At the end of the day, there is no point tracking something you are not interested in. Neither traffic or engagement may interest you, you might prefer to track where people are coming from and how they are travelling through your website. Or you might not want to track anything at all.