If you’ve never heard me say it before, I’ll say it now: Analytics are one of the best and important tools that you can use for growing a blog, or form. WordPress tracks analytics specific to your blog itself, but, if you branch out to sharing posts on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and Pinterest the analytics WordPress tracks with respect to incoming visitors is limited.
This is where ‘Bit.ly’ comes in. Bit.ly’s slogan is ‘Unleash the power of the link’ and that it really, really does.
If you share your posts through any social media platforms, I would strongly recommend considering a Bit.ly account.
Bit.ly allows you to create custom, shortened links that are trackable. Why does this matter? Because analytics are integral to growth. And, if you can track your links then you can find out how to better share. If you’re going to go through the effort of sharing your posts to other social media platforms, then you might as well do so in the most effective way.
How it works:
- Create a Bit.ly account. It’s completely free and takes less than five minutes to sign up.
- Copy the link of the post that you’re wishing to share to social media and beyond.
- Go to bit.ly and on the top right side of the page there is an orange button that says ‘Create’. Click ‘Create’
- In the pinkish coloured box where it says ‘Past Long URL’, paste your post link.
- Wait two seconds, or click ‘Create’ (in orange at the bottom)
Et voila! You have a completely unique, completely traceable link. Bit.ly creates a link with random characters and, at this point your link is done and ready to go.
If you’e so inclined, however, you can customize this link to best fit your content. There’s a box that says ‘Customize Back Half’ – in here, you can change the random characters Bit.Ly uses to something suitable for you. Example: Bit.ly/fsdf234sad or Bit.ly/VeeIsAmazing123
Once your link is created to your liking, copy the traceable link and use that to post to social media, to share via emails, to include in comments and forums, etc… Then, every time someone clicks on that link, Bit.ly traces that data. Where they clicked on the link from, what date it was they clicked on the link, what country the person lives in, what time of day was most popular for the link and much much more.
Why does this matter?
Having analytics and data about how people find your blog is like holding a secret key to a door that not everyone knows exists.
Bit.ly is such an easy solution for analytics for bloggers, especially those just starting out, because it’s free. Whilst WordPress tracks your WordPress analytics and Twitter tracks your Twitter analytics, etc… Bit.ly allows you to track real time analytics from any website where you post the unique link. Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, or wherever your little heart desires all in one place.
Data it collects:
- Where people come from (what site: Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Youtube, etc…)
- Where people come from (what country they live in)
- What day of the week your links are most popular
- The dates people are clicking on your link. While there’ll likely be an influx of people clicking on the date you’re posting the link for the first time, are there people coming a week later? A month later? Bit.ly is going to track that and how they found your link a month later.
Using this unique link will tell you real time data of how effective your social media/digital integration promotion is and where your audience comes from. Once you have that data, it’s completely up to you what you do with it. But, if your desire is to grow your blog at all, data like this is invaluable!