This is a guest post by Julie Neidlinger.
What does “better” mean, anyway?
It means that somewhere between point A and point B, you see measurable improvement. You don’t want to stay where you started. You don’t want to slide backwards. Clearly, you want to get better. Where is your blog at today?
How do we measure better?
Measuring if something is “better” seems subjective, but that isn’t completely so. There are ways to determine if improvement is happening with specific measurements as well as by reasoned comparisons.
What The Numbers Are Saying
For a quantified measurement, you can tell if your blog is better using numbers. When it comes to blogging, numbers mean traffic and social media metrics. For those numbers to be meaningful, there are two considerations to keep in mind:
1. Consistent data.Using numbers to determine improvement requires a consistent data pool to compare to. You can’t use numbers if you aren’t monitoring stats early on.
2. Consistent goals. You have to know what you’re looking for in those numbers. Having a pile of data that you don’t know how to interpret is overwhelming.
In order to spot trends, you need a pool of data, and so it is best to set up analytics tools sooner rather than later. It will take several months of data to begin seeing weekly patterns, and a year’s worth of data to have yearly patterns. If you haven’t already done so, consider using Google Analytics (or any other stats system) right away.