In this article we are going to help you create a Web Analytics Dashboard using Google Data Studio, traffic data from Google Analytics and WordLift.
We constantly work for content-rich websites where sometimes hundreds of new articles are published on a daily basis. Analyzing traffic trends on these large properties and creating actionable reports is still time-consuming and inefficient. This is also very true for businesses investing in content marketing that need to dissect their traffic and evaluate their marketing efforts against concrete business goals (i.e. increasing subscriptions, improving e-commerce sales and so on).
As result of this experience, I am happy to share with you a Google Data Studio report that you can copy and personalize for your own needs.
Data is meant to help transform organizations by providing them with answers to pressing business questions and uncovering previously unseen trends. This is particularly true when your biggest asset is the content that you produce.
With the ongoing growth of digitized data and the explosion of web metrics, organizations usually face two challenges:
Finding what istruly relevant to untap a new business opportunity.
Make it simpler for the business user to prepare and share the data, without being a data scientist.
Semantic Web Analytics is about delivering on these promises; empowering business users and let them uncover new insights – from the analysis of the traffic of their website.
We are super lucky to have a community of fantastic clients that help us shape our product and keep pushing us ahead of the curve.
Before enabling this feature, both the team at Salzburgerland Tourismus and the team at TheNextWeb had already improved their Google Analytics tracking code to store entity data as events. This allowed us to experiment, ahead of time, with this functionality before making it available to all other subscribers.
What is Semantic Web Analytics?
Semantic Web Analytics is the use of named entities and linked vocabularies such as schema.org to analyze the traffic of a website.
The natural language processing that WordLift uses to markup the content with linked entities enables us to classify articles and pages in Google Analytics with – real-world objects, events, situations or even abstract concepts.
How to activate Semantic Web Analytics?
Starting with WordLift 3.20, entities annotated in webpages can also be sent to Google Analytics by enabling the feature in the WordLift’s Settings panel.
Here is how this feature can be enabled.
You can also define the dimensions in Google Analytics to store entity data, this is particularly useful if you are already using custom dimensions.
As soon as the data starts flowing you will see a new category under Behaviour > Events in your Google Analytics.
Events in Google Analytics about named entities.
WordLift will trigger an event labeled with the title of the entity, every time a page containing an annotation with that entity is open.
Using these new events we can look at how content is consumed not only in terms of URLs and site categories but also in terms of entities. Moreover, we can investigate how articles are connected with entities and how entities are connected with articles.
Show me how this can impact my business
Making sense of data for a business user is about unlocking its power with interactive dashboards and beautiful reports. To inspire our clients, and once again with the help of online marketing ninjas like Martin Reichhart and Rainer Edlinger from Salzburgerland, we have built a dashboard using Google Data Studio – a free tool that helps you create comprehensive reports using data from different sources.
Using this dashboard we can immediately see, for each section of the website, what are the concepts driving the traffic, what articles are associated with these concepts and where the traffic is coming from.
An overview of the entities that drive the traffic on our website.
Entities associated with an article about structured data.
This helps publishers and business owners analyze the value behind a given topic. It can be precious to analyze the behaviors and interests of a specific user group. For example, on travel websites, we can immediately see what are the most relevant topics for let’s say Italian speaking and German speaking travelers.
WordLift’s clients in the news and media sector are also using this data to build new relationships with advertisers and affiliated businesses. They can finally bring in meetings the exact volumes they have for – let’s say – content that mentions a specific product or a category of products. This helps them calculate in advance how this traffic can be monetized.
Are you ready to make sense of your Google Analytics data? Contact us and let’s get started!
Here is the recipe for a Semantic Web Analytics dashboard in Google Data Studio
With unlimited, free reports, it’s time to start playing immediately with Data Studio and entity data and see if and how it meets your organization’s needs.
To help with that, you can use as a starting point the report I have just created. Create your own interactive report and share with colleagues and partners (even if they don’t have direct access to your Google Analytics).
Simply take this report, make a copy, and replace with your own data!
1. Make a Copy of this file
Go to the File menu and click to make a copy of the report. If you have never used Data Studio before, click to accept the terms and conditions, and then redo this step.
2. Do Not Request Access
Click “Maybe Later” when Data Studio warns you that data sources are not attached. If you click “Resolve” by mistake, do not click to request access – instead, click “Done”.
3. Switch Edit Toggle On
Make sure the “Edit” toggle is switched on. Click the text link to view the current page settings. The GA Demo Account data will appear as an “Unknown” data source there.
4. Create A New Data Source
If you have not created any data sources yet, you’ll see only sample data under “Available Data Sources” – in that case, scroll down and click “Create New Data Source” to add your own GA data to the available list.
5. Select Your Google Analytics View
Choose the Google Analytics connector, and authorize access if you aren’t signed in to GA already. Then select your desired GA account, property, and the view from each column.
6. Connect to Your GA Data
Name your data source (at the top left), or let it default to the name of the GA view. Click the blue “Connect” button at the top right.
Are you ready to build you first Semantic Dashboard? Add me on LinkedIn and let’s get started!
Voice search has always been considered to be a luxury but it has now become more of a necessity as more people are searching the internet via voice commands. Who would want to sit and type out information when you can simply voice this information and voila? ?
We’ve come a long way in this regard, from virtual assistants with the likes of Siri and Alexa carrying out mundane tasks including weather reports, trending news and scheduling appointments to real-time traffic evaluation and providing accurate pin-point GPS locations. All of this information is communicated without the need to ever press a button or input a command, at least not a written one.
In the digital market, this feature has untapped potential when it comes to closely associating to exact-keyword matches for the spoken query. The benefits involved apply to both the interested parties. Let’s delve a bit deeper into the rising significance of voice searches.
How important is voice search?
When looking at user convenience, it is important to note that thanks to the integration of voice recognition software in multiple platforms, individuals go through versatile experiences via many different channels.
The accessibility and ease of simply voicing your concerns or questions is unprecedented in describing any problem. For example, would you prefer speaking to a doctor when explaining your condition or would you write it down? The answer is quite simple as it is in our nature to seek convenience wherever we possibly can.
Not to mention, the solution to the query obtained is much quicker as well, naturally reducing bounce rates and retaining the potential consumer for longer. This way, the user is satisfied with his answer as it matches closely with the words he uttered, which in turn, is favourable for the business to improve customer relations and feedback.
Here are some statistics to further emphasize on the importance of voice search:
58% of consumers employed the use of voice search for finding contact details among other info for local businesses within the last year.
In the US, 71% of individuals lying in 18-29 age group use mobile virtual assistants.
Using smart home speakers, around 22% of consumers purchased a product.
The future holds an even more promising prospect for voice searches when the concept is applied to marketing strategies:
20% of all search queries online are voice-based. By 2020, that figure is predicted to change to 50% which will make voice search technically as relevant as typed searches.
Voice-based smart speaker market globally is forecasted to reach $30 billion in revenue by 2024.
Voice-enabled shopping is expected to rise to $40 billion in revenue generated by 2022.
Google Assistant, a service that accompanies Google Home speakers, is currently the most popular voice-based software that supports 17 languages as of now, with plans to reach 30 sometime this year. This allows user to voice their commands in English, French, German, Dutch, Spanish, Korean and Mandarin among others. Furthermore, it even accounts for differences in accent and phonology of English in different parts of the world including the UK, US, Singapore and India.
When looking at the e-commerce sector, Amazon’s Alexa is the clear winner with 71% of the market share in the US for its Echo speakers compared to Google Home’s 24%. It is safe to say the market is still very unsaturated for smart speakers and voice-based queries with only 39 apps of now supporting such tech. To become a part of the rising trend and embracing the future of e-commerce, let’s take a look at some of the practices or strategies you can employ for optimizing your platform for voice search.
How to optimize your content for voice search?
By now, you realize the importance and need for tailoring your on-site content such that it shows up higher in organic search results when triggered via a voice search.
Keyword research has always been important in all forms of marketing and advertising; it is no different when it comes to voice search or commands. However, you need to account for the differences as individuals are likely to be more natural (as opposed to be more direct and specific with typed searches) in their queries so long-tail keywords and more conversational words are suited for a more semantic search.
Additionally, phrases should also be at the forefront of the strategy that you will be employing to target certain keywords for voice search. Google Analytics and the ‘People Also Ask’ section of the search results are good indicative tools for tailoring your keywords to voice-based queries with the latter providing similar recommendations for any given query.
Furthermore, thanks to a greater share of voice searches belonging to local information and details, your digital platform can favour by incorporating words like ‘near me’ and ‘close to my location’ in the meta description and alt texts and tags of your content.
This provides a quick answer to the person’s query for nearby restaurants, educational institutes or petrol stations where your website becomes immediately visible.
Tone and writing
To relate to the user better, you need to speak their language. Often at times, you won’t find an individual speaking out his query in a strict professional tone. Rather, a colloquial and informal approach is usually always favoured and so your content should match this tone accordingly as well.
While altering and tailoring the writing style to the user’s likeness, it is important not to detract from the main goal which is communicating relevant info. The solution should be satisfactory and you should be concise about it.
Q&A for featured snippets
FAQ pages and featured snippets, or the famous ‘0th place’ on the search results go hand-in-hand as Google values direct answers which match closely with the user’s query. Featured snippets are a great way to increase in-bound traffic and brand awareness.
The basics are relevant here with many people asking ‘what’, ‘why’ and ‘how’ about a particular product, service or person. Most of the snippets are related to sectors like health or medical information, commerce statistics and how-to descriptions or recipes for cooking.
Remember, above anything else, short and to-the-point precise answers will always be the key to solving the user’s problem in the shortest amount of time so modify your content accordingly.
Alternatively known as schema markups or rich snippets, these appear below the URL of your website and give a hint to the user about the additional information within the website that they can redirect to then and there.
These details can range from pricing options to contact info, or even the different sections or hierarchy of the web. Such data is also of great use to the search engines as web crawlers or bots find it easier to ‘understand’ your website by making it clear to them the metadata or sitemap so the relevancy of the content can be figured.
Services like Schema.org, SchemaApp and Google’s own Structured Data Markup Helper will allow you not only to boost SEO rankings by 30% but respond better to voice-based searches especially with Schema.org’s Speakable property.
Mobile and speed optimization
Lastly, we need to consider where the actual voice searches are coming from, and how to excel at that particular channel for better results. The answer already being crystal-clear, there’s no getting to the voice-search heaven without passing the SEO river first and that’s why mobile optimization is absolutely necessary.
The most important aspect of boasting an effective mobile version of any site is to make sure your pages load in no longer than 2 seconds. Remember, users are expecting almost instant answers when they use vocal queries and a sluggish site works to the opposite effect, thereby frustrating the user away.
Google’s Lighthouse tool is great in this regard as it has runs a thorough edit of the desktop or mobile version of the site and then provides a comprehensive report including all the concerns to be addressed and potential solutions or recommendations to improve upon them.
Voice-enabled searches are here to stay and increase exponentially as we delve into the ever-expanding capabilities of technology. Quick and relevant responses, in addition to versatile and accessible options only speak in favour of such a feature. To capitalize on it, businesses can employ strategies that unsurprisingly aren’t different to those implemented for favouring SEO rankings.
The same guidelines apply which sees platforms vying for optimizing mobile versions of their site, playing closely to the keyword(s) inputted by the user, Q&As for increased relevance and where voice-search and SEO have no correlation, having an informal tone to better match the expectations of the average customer.
About the Author
Sohail Rupani is a senior SEO Strategist at an Orlando Digital Marketing Company. He specializes in SEO and SEM techniques. He is passionate about technology and loves to analyze the tech industry in his spare time and stay in touch with the latest happenings. He also writes technical articles about SEO and digital marketing. Follow @sohailrupani for more updates.
At this point, we can state with confidence that high-quality content relies on precise analytics and trustworthy data. When content is not supported by data, you can never be sure that it will directly hit the audience’s pain points and contribute to your objectives.
Essentially, you can guarantee that your content will serve your audience and your brand goals, by using the data you gather from analytics.
Use your data to create variations on your top-performing content.
[I] record my podcast on Facebook Live, upload audio to iTunes, create a blog post, take 4 best quotes from the episode and create graphics for Pinterest, take 4 clips from a month’s worth of episodes and create a 2-minute video to use as a Twitter video.
The moral of the story is: Get the most out of your content, even if it’s gone stagnant.
3. Produce Linkable Assets
You’re always going to have to make earning links a major part of your marketing strategy. Why?
Off-page SEO techniques can be a powerful ally to boost the search engine ranking of your website. We’re not talking just about backlinks, but a whole SEO strategy that includes essentials SEO factors that every competitive business should include in their strategy. Let’s find out more about Off-Page SEO and the latest techniques that work great in 2019.
What is Off-Page SEO?
Unlike On-Page SEO, Off-page SEO isn’t associated with the optimization of content or the website, it rather uses certain techniques to boost the visibility of your website over the Internet. For instance, if Investopedia links with the content of your websites, then some powers of Investopedia will shift to your content link and you will acquire top ranks for that content.
Similar to this there are different development techniques used to rank websites known as Off-Page SEO. Let’s go deeper on the subject.
SEO is a way utilized to enhance traffic and conversion rates of your website by acquiring high position on SERP like Bing, Google, Yahoo, etc.
However, for off-page tasks, you need to find out the high domain authority websites and develop backlinks with recent articles.
What is the main difference between On-Page and Off-Page SEO?
There is a significant difference between on-page and off-page SEO. Nowadays if you want to boost your website ranking in search engine results, you must know about all SEOtechniques, and SEO is traditionally divided into two categories: on Page and off Page.
On-Page SEO: the on-page SEO techniques (also known as SEO on the site) are meant to optimize different parts of a website and content that affect the search engine rankings. It’s something that you have control over and that you can change on your site.
Off-page SEO: the off-page SEO techniques are focuses on increasing the authority of a domain by obtaining links from other websites.
What are the latest Off-page SEO techniques?
Research on the latest content
Interesting content rules the Search Engine Optimization sphere. Developing interesting and worth sharing content is a great method to build a high proportion of backlinks to our websites and articles.
Tip: frequently research and update your content.
Develop innovative infographics. In the present scenario, infographics are becoming popular over the web. Submit your infographic to specialized websites and offer reference to your articles and webpages. The dimensions of the image vary with different websites.
Article and Press Release Submission
Submit your articles to press release and article submission directories. You can also add links to your website.
Tip: ensure that your article is 100% unique and is of top-notch quality. Low quality content and content stuffed with keywords holds higher chances of being disapproved. Select an appropriate division and offer a captivating title to your article.
Social Media Engagement
A basic off-page SEO method is social media engagement. If you desire to develop a website’s visibility, engage with people on various social media sites.
Visibility on social media will aid in expanding your business and also supports you in acquiring a greater proportion of backlinks.
Question and Answers
Generally, people look for answers on the web and various webmasters utilize this chance for link building.
Quora, being the topmost question-answer discussing the platform, offers answers to the questions of its visitors.
Tip: create your own account on Quora. Then search for questions associated with the topics you cover. If you have answers for those questions then post them and add relevant links to your website’s content. Quora’s users will check the link to grab more data.
Engage in forums that are associated with your website and establishment, so that you can develop a relationship with the community. Answer to threads, questions which people put up and offer recommendations. Utilize “Do Follow” forums.
Guest Post submission
Guest posting is a popular link building method in which content is published as a guest post by other authoritative websites.
Tip: make sure you choose appropriate websites, which are authoritative and fall in the same niche that you are in, and develop interesting articles for publishing and link them your website.
Web 2.0 Submissions
Develop a sub-domain within a high domain authority website such as WordPress, medium.com, blogger, tumbler and such.
Hacks for web2.0:
Always share interesting articles and blog posts
Upgrade the website on a frequent basis
Develop backlinks for already published contents.
Google My Business is a product by Google and is available for free. Enhance this for a higher SEO position.
Hacks for a business listing:
Write appropriate 250-character description
Ensure that the most important piece of information is present in the initial paragraph with the city name
Upgrade your content, images, products, and offers on a frequent basis
Check reviews and comments and reply quickly in a positive manner
Use real product images under appropriate categories.
To sum up
There is a tough competition in the digital markets, and to boost up your position you need an off-Page SEO strategy. On-Page and Off-page SEO tools will help you reach a higher rank for your website on Search Engines.
While using off-page SEO make sure to restrict yourself from black hat SEO techniques.
About the Author
Manan Ghadawala is the founder of 21Twelve Interactive which is one of the best mobile app development companies in India and the USA. He is an idealistic leader with a lively management style and thrives raising the company’s growth with his talents. He is an astounding business professional with astonishing knowledge and applies artful tactics to reach those imaginary skies for his clients.