If you do not have your own website yet, you should consider getting one. If you are working for yourself, growing a music industry career on the side, and/or want to continue to build your online presence then creating content and sharing it on your website is crucial. The best way to track as much website data as possible for free is through Google Analytics. The setup is pretty is simple and once you are seeing your website data, you can see which pages are viewed the most, how long people stay on your site, what website people are coming from, and a lot more. Here are some awesome things you can see in Google Analytics to help your career.
1. View Top Pageviews to see which keywords are driving people to your site
By using the search bar up top and typing “top pageviews”, Google will pull a report that shows you which pages on your site got the most views in a given time period. You can use this to see which content is most popular (or not-so-popular) and also to infer which search keywords people enter to get to your site. Normally, Google does not give you the organic (marketing term for “not paid for”) search data that drives traffic to your site unless you use Search Console, though still limited in data, or pay for it and look at the data using Google Ads. However, by leveraging the Top Pageviews report and other areas of Google Analytics, you can see which content is the most popular, which keywords are highlighted the most on that page and use that to create more content around that topic and get more traffic.
2. Focus on User Metrics
Google made some significant changes to its algorithm in March and June of 2019 where it prioritized websites that delivered relevant content and offered a good user experience. Create good content that aligns to your website and structure your site in a way that makes people want to stay. There will be much more emphasis on user-based metrics (Average Session Duration, Pages Per Session, Bounce Rate) so creating content that your audience cares about is more important than ever.
3. Track where interested people are coming from using Top Conversion Paths
This is especially helpful if you want people to fill out a contact form, download something, or sign up for a newsletter. By setting up a redirection link once people submit a form (ie: take them to a “thank you” page after filling out a form), you can easily create a Goal in Google Analytics and track where people came from prior to them completing that Goal.
So if you see that a lot of people are starting at Referrals, you can view your Referral traffic and see other publications or websites that are linking to your site and bringing people to it. The top websites could be potential content partners since they already drive more traffic to your site. Additionally, if you see that people convert (completing a Goal) after returning to your website more than once directly, dive into those returning users to see which pages they are viewing. You can place clear messages on those pages and push the users to convert sooner. For example, if you see that many returning users visit your About page, you can add a button on the About page that brings them to new prints you are selling, a zine you just published, or a show you are promoting.