Why is tracking and measuring your goal important

by Ashvini on February 26, 2014 · 11 comments

in Business

It was hard for me to personally create goals and measure them till now. Though I could set goals easily, I got distracted from them most of the time and eventually I lost the track of how much I was deviating from them.

A lot of my blogging friends closed their blogs and moved on to other business/activities. Blogging is really hard work just like any other business and a blog without a goal is like a ship without a steer. One may reach a shore but it probably won’t be the one that they were aiming for. I believe that a lot of bloggers do not go into details of why things are wrong. They just assume, oh the traffic is down, they must be doing something wrong.

Entrepreneurs like bloggers do not feel strong enough to track their progress. The word tracking , monitoring and measuring have connotation with bureaucracy and large organizations, which entrepreneurs do not want be associate with Winking smile .

However, large organizations do this thing right and we need to learn from them. ID-100213268

When did I discover the joy of Tracking and measuring?

A case in the point is my own blog. It was hit by Google updates and like millions of small blogs suffered a terrible loss in traffic.

I did not have any idea, why it was hit and after a lot of researching I decided to give up looking to Google, to give me any more respect.

I am sure a business you know, would have faced similar scenario. It is impossible to run a small business on internet today, be hated by Google and yet be successful.

I then decided to look at the analytics for my blog.

I found that I was still getting traffic on one of my blog post. So, uncle G did not hate me completely. I found that the bounce rate ( percentage of people, who leave the blog after landing on that post)  on that post was nearing 90%. I decided to bring it down. I changed a number of things on the post, added more pictures, made it much more readable.

In a month or so bounce rate on that post dropped to 75% which meant that people were not leaving the blog as much compared to before.

I also decided to work on traffic building strategies and this is what I got in the end

image

What monitoring means to us as entrepreneurs?

We entrepreneurs may ignore the measurement aspect of our work. However measurement can lead us to create better strategies.

Let us take an example:

A really broad goal: I want to make money selling products on internet.

Not so broad: Get traffic on your blog and then convert it to sales

Focused goal: Increase traffic on my blog by 10% and convert 10% of it to sales

I hope you get the point.

Having a goal is important , but monitoring the progress is equally important. 

Takeaway

  • Create goals and from them sub goals
  • Monitor the progress

Image courtesy of rakratchada / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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{ 11 comments }

Mark May 22, 2014 at 7:35 am

Nice post Ashvini!

I like the way you pointed out you start a project with undefined goals and because you weren’t tracking it, things kinda of went south in a hurry!

Definitely been there and done that as well! But once you did start to set specific goals, you really did a great job of decreasing your “bounce rate” by 17% in just 30 days!

That’s pretty impressive and definitely a worthy goal! And I definitely need to learn and apply some of your proven secrets!

Thanks so much for sharing it!

Adrienne March 2, 2014 at 2:08 am

Hey Ashvini,

I know that when I started my goals weren’t specific either and I think that’s because I wasn’t sure exactly which direction I wanted to go. Once you do it’s pretty obvious that people don’t see results so a lot of them bail.

I have a good blogging friend that said he was backing off from blogging so much because it was a waste of his time and he wasn’t achieving anything. I asked him what he wanted to achieve and he said to make some money. I told him well then you have to promote some products in order to do that and since you’re not promoting anything then my goodness, it’s pretty obvious why you’re not going anywhere. If you’re not promoting anything how can you achieve those goals? I really thought he was much smarter than that.

Great share Ashvini and glad you’re blog is doing better. I shared a post some time back about how to bring that bounce rate down and it’s by adding a code to your analytics code. Google thinks if they don’t bounce around your site then they’re not interested. They’re not even taking into account the time they’ve spent there so I made sure they did. Brought that baby down in nothing flat.

Hope you’re enjoying your weekend.

~Adrienne

Ashvini Kumar Saxena March 5, 2014 at 9:45 am

Hi Adrienne,
I completely agree with you. I realized that we need solid goals ( the more specific, the better). Thus I went and decided to use more analytics to find some specific goals. Though it is not yet great but atleast I have something to work for.
I believe a lot of people give up blogging because they do not know what they want from blogging. They have no strategy to tackle ever changing business environment.
I will also work on promoting products once I start seeing some progress on traffic front. When I had traffic, I made some sales through amazon which was great.
Thanks for the insightful comment. You inspire us with them :)

Daria Steigman March 1, 2014 at 8:06 pm

Hi Ashvini,

Good to see you diving into your analytics. They are definitely a useful tool (and I must admit I probably don’t look at them often enough). But I actually think your post is really about something even more important: focus. While understanding metrics is important, what’s most important is having clear, defined goals (which you do)– because, as you know, all the metrics in the world don’t mean much if what you’re measuring isn’t the “right” stuff. Great post!

Ashvini Kumar Saxena March 5, 2014 at 9:39 am

Hi Daria,
Thanks for your comment.
I have trying to get back in the game and I realized that just having great content is not a good way of winning it. That is why I decided to check what is not correct with my blog and then I found these goals.

Jeevan Jacob John March 1, 2014 at 9:51 am

Great points, Ashvini :)

Especially loved the part about bounce rates :D It’s one of the things I am trying to improve (I have around 69% right now…trying to bring it down a bit more).

Effective monitoring is something we really have to learn from the big organizations (I am trying to be better at it….recording and publishing all my monthly analytics data on a sub domain – users can see it and post suggestions while I can keep track of everything and be organized :D).

Anyways, thank you for sharing this, Ashvini :) Hope you are well!

Ashvini Kumar Saxena March 3, 2014 at 8:56 pm

Hi Jeevan,

I am doing great but I keep going to doctor for some small things or other. Hope that will stop soon. But I am far better than I was a month back ( just like my blog).
I have lost quite a bit of traffic and I feel that is because a) I could not work much on it last three months b) I did not had a focused goal. Now hopefully both questions get settled and I am able to make progress ( which still looks like a challenge).
I am making a URL shortner service program which will help us to keep our traffic to ourselves. Let us see when I can finish it. We had enough of dependence on Google and Facebook. Time to get some independence lol
Thanks for your comments :).

Lori Gosselin February 27, 2014 at 9:11 pm

Hi Ashvini,
Like Carolyn, I didn’t know you could check the bounce rate on just one post. Can you tell me what is a good bounce rate? Are we looking for 0% ;-)
Is that possible or logical to go for that?
Lori

Ashvini Kumar Saxena February 28, 2014 at 6:35 pm

Hi Lori,

Yes we can check bounce rate per post. I will show it in our next meeting. We can get a 0% bounce rate ( but its not easy as a lot of people may not want to go beyond one post). I think a good bounce rate depends on the average bounce rate of your blog post. There is no fixed %.

Carolyn Nicander Mohr February 26, 2014 at 10:58 pm

Hi Ashvini, Wow, this is fascinating. I never thought about examining the bounce rate of a single article to see whether I could improve upon it. That’s such a focused goal that most people should be able to achieve.

You’re right, every business experiences downturns at some point, even the most successful ones. These should be seen as opportunities to re-group and figure out how we can do better.

Thanks for the insight and the inspiration, Ashvini!

Ashvini Kumar Saxena February 28, 2014 at 6:37 pm

Hi Carolyn,

Great that we got one more point to discuss. I am spending a lot of time on analytics these days as part of measurement agenda.
I think we( bloggers collectively) have given all big websites a lot of stuff and got not much in return. Its time for a change.

Thanks for your comment :).

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