5 reports you need to look at in Google Analytics

Firstly, what is Google Analytics?

Google Analytics is a FREE tool from Google that enables you to measure every aspect of your website. This is fantastic for really understanding your user’s behaviour and how they interact with your site. This knowledge can help you plan your marketing, think of new ideas and really identify what’s working and what isn’t.

Now, when you first dive into analytics it can be a tad overwhelming because there is so much data in there but to get you started I want to tell you about five reports you need to look at. These five will help you understand your user’s behaviour and also make some changes if needed.

 

 

1. Mobile View

You might be thinking this is obvious. We live in such a mobile world now that surely everything works on mobile – but you need to check in with this and there are a few reasons.

You need to make sure that your website not only looks good on mobile but also works really well too. With a lot of the website builders around they do come with responsive templates however, you need to keep an eye on this because sometimes it doesn’t always look good or buttons that should be clicking aren’t. You don’t want people bouncing off the website.

The more users visiting your site via mobile and staying on your website will help your rankings in Google. This report will tell you how many visitors are viewing your website on their mobile device – it will even show you what device.

2. Audience Behaviour – New vs Returning

This report is going to tell you which users are brand new and what percentage have come back for more. Both are great and this is why.

If you see an increase in new visitors to your website this is a fab sign because it means more and more people are coming to find out who you are and what you do. They are interested in your business and if means if you are attracting new visitors then the marketing activities you are doing to expand your reach and your brand is working.

Returning visitors are also key because this means they like what they have seen and have come back. These type of visitors are also more likely to engage in the content on your website – your blogs for example and potentially share your content as well via Social Media. Returning visitors are warmed up and more likely to purchase, download a guide or enquire.

3. Landing Pages

It’s so valuable to know what pages on your website are working and what aren’t. These pages relate to the bounce rate on your website (where people visit and literally bounce off) and help you work on strengthening your content, your message and conversions.

If you know what pages are causing people to leave your website you can then work on making those weaker pages stronger – thinking about your message, call to actions and don’t forget images too to draw them in.

4. Audience Overview

This report will show you how many visitors you are getting to your website. It will breakdown the visitors, the sessions and how long they are spending on your site. You can adjust the date range as well and do a comparison with the previous year so you can see how your traffic has increased over time before diving into what’s working.

5. Acquisition Overview

Now, this is the section that shows you exactly how people are coming to your website. It breaks down how your site is performing in search engines by the number of Organic visits. It will show you how many people have visited your website via Social Media too. You can also click on Social Media and it will even show you what platforms people used. This is brilliant if you are putting all your efforts into one social media platform as you want to make sure it’s paying off.

You will also see Direct traffic in here which is when people put your website address in because they know it – how amazing is that? They know your address and will go straight to it in their browsers. Looking further down the list you will see Emails and this will show how your email marketing strategy is working and how much traffic it’s bringing to the site.

Finally take a look at Referrals because if you have been working really hard doing guest posts for other people and linking back (which you should always do) back to your site, this is where you can see how well that is performing.

But it doesn’t end there

There is so much data to be found in this wonderful platform, I have merely highlighted five reports to get you started. If you want to know more or take a dive into Google Analytics for your business check out my training session and how you can get clued up.

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Identifying your ideal customer and why it’s important

Your Ideal Client and what this means

In business, we want to work with the right people. We want to connect with people that will value what we do, that fit with our business values and who the brand/business was designed for. We want our ideal customer.

When you started your business and had your lightbulb moment for what you wanted to do, who did you visualise? Who did you see being the customer for your business? Knowing who they are is so important because not only does it mean you have created a product or service for the right person, but that your marketing will support you reaching this person.

How to identify them

Sometimes our thoughts on our ideal client can become foggy and you might need to spend some time checking in with who they are or who they need to be, depending on what stage you’re at with your business.  A great way to start doing this is by creating what’s called a Persona. A customer persona is really useful in helping you focus on your ideal customer. They help you really identify your audience so that everything you do in marketing your business speaks to this particular person.

A customer persona is a semi-fictional representation of your ideal customer. This is based on research you have conducted in your business, data that you have about existing customers, relationships you have built – basically any knowledge you have about your customers. The more detailed you can make your persona the better. However, if you’re starting out you may not have that data to hand yet so you can begin by building a customer persona based on what you do know about the people you want to work with or want to buy from you, the customers/clients you want to attract.

Why is this important

Creating a customer persona is fun and the reason it’s fun is that you are outlining exactly who you want to work with and attract to your business. You are cutting through the noise and getting clear.  We want people who are going to value what we do. You’re in business because you are passionate about what you do PLUS you want to make money using that passion, it is business after all. To do this you need to know who your ideal client/customer is. By outlining who they are you not only save yourself time in your marketing but you are also spending every effort speaking to the right people for your business.

That is gold!

In truly understanding your ideal client you will be able to create a truly personalised approach in marketing your business.

Creating your customer persona

 

Step 1 – Identity

We want to start with who they are and their identity. A great place to start is age – because if you know the age of your customer then you could do a cheeky bit of research into popular names of the year they were born. Then you’ve got a name for your persona. Once we give them a name they are already taking shape and forming an identity.

Here are some questions to get you started:

Give them a name
Age
Where they live
Are they in a relationship?
Married?
Have Kids?
What kind of house do they live in?
What area?
What kind of job do they have?

Step 2 – Their Life

After diving into who they are, we want to look at their life. When creating a persona you want to look at what their life picture. Almost imagining a photograph and this photograph can tell you everything about who they are and what they do. You know those quizzes when you its filled with clues and you’ve got to guess the song names or film from all these little clues? Think of it like that, you are piecing together the clues and solving the mystery.

Ask yourself:

Where do they work and how long have they worked there?
Where do they go every day?
What’re their daily routines?
How do they communicate?
Do they have phones/devices?
Are they on social media? What platforms?
What characteristics do they have?
What are their values?
Do they have hobbies?
What is their home like?

Step 3 – Their Challenges

Remember your business is providing a solution to your customer. You’ve identified that something is missing in your area of business or niche for example. You know there is a big problem to be solved and you want to be the business to do it.

Understanding and identifying your customers challenges not only help you understand them but you can speak directly to their challenges. You are bringing emotion and authenticity to your marketing. Note, however, it is never good to use people’s emotions in a negative way for your marketing, you want to support and encourage in a positive way whether you’re a product or service based business.

Have a think about:

What problems do they have?
What challenges are they currently facing at work? At home?
What do they want to achieve?
What are their motivations and goals?

Step 4 – Negative Personas

After spending time thinking of what you want your ideal customer to be like it’s also really good to spend some time checking in and thinking about who you don’t want to work with and attract to your business. This is called a Negative Persona.

Who do you not want to work with/attract?
What characteristics would a bad client have?
What do they no care about?

 

 

And Voila! You’ve just created an audience persona!

Once you have everything above you can bring that all together to shape your customer persona.

Don’t forget this is your starting block and as your business grows and evolves you will be updating this and changing it to suit you and your business. As you gather more data, have more conversations and more interactions with your customers and clients you can adapt and change your personas. Nothing is ever set in stone in business or marketing, things are always evolving and changing – this is why this your customer persona will also change, so don’t forget to check in with it every once in a while to make sure you’re still on the right track. Also if you ever get stuck with your marketing messaging look at this persona and ask yourself “Am I using the right voice to attract this dream person?” It can help you stay on track and make sure your marketing is always on brand and on message.

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How to work with influencers to promote your kids brand!

working with influencers to promote your business

 

One of the questions I get asked about quite a lot from the kids’ brands that I work with is how they can start approaching influencers to work with them. So I thought I would put together some tips on how you can do this. Here we go.

What is a Social Media Influencer?

First of all, I think it’s important we look at what an influencer actually is, especially on Social Media. Let’s take a look at the following definition from PixLee it states:

“A Social Media Influencer is a user on social media who has established credibility in a specific industry. A social media influencer has access to a large audience and can persuade others by virtue of their authenticity and reach.”

So when looking at the above it’s identifying a person who has built an authentic, engaged audience in a specific niche i.e. it could be being a parent blogger who also shares insight into their lives on Social Media. Example of this is Anna from Mother Pukka or Clemmie from Mother of Daughters.

But what are the things you need to keep in mind when thinking of working with an influencer and what are the myths behind it all?

1: Popularity

This can often be the biggest myth and key thing to look at. Popularity doesn’t always equal influence. You might see huge follower numbers there, but as we also know with our business accounts you can get any Tom, Dick or Harry following you sometimes and they’re not always our target customer, so imagine how many of these may also be following your influencer of choice. What you should be looking at over Follower numbers is, that’s right you probably guessed it, engagement!

You need to look at how much interaction their posts get and this is beyond likes, what is the engagement? You might find someone has 20K followers and a post that gets 561 likes and 5 comments. Look at this when you are considering who to approach and potentially work with for your brand or business.

2: Relationships

Working with an influencer is like anything else in business, it’s about the relationship you both have. Now, of course, this will take time, but if you are wanting to create a sustainable relationship that can not only work for you and your business initially but long-term and generate sales this is what you need to consider.

So find the influencers who are right for your business. Don’t just target the ones based on their numbers (as point above). You want to work with someone who has the same values as you and your business, would be a great fit for your product or service. You find that when a product really works and suits the influencers life and their values they talk about it in a much more natural and authentic way too.

A great way to start building these relationships is to identify who, then start interacting and engaging, if you generally like them and like what they’re about this wouldn’t feel like work either, it will feel natural. Then when you want to approach them they may already recognise your name and know about your business, ice broken.

Another great idea is to see how you could both work on some content together, maybe a guest blog post on your site or a joint interview perhaps.

3: Measuring ROI

Depending on how you decide to work with an influencer it could be via gifting a product or a paid post/story etc you need to make sure you are measuring the ROI on this work. I don’t just mean via likes and comments or more followers for you – we all know this a vanity metric at times and people can just jump on a follow wagon through influence, it needs to attribute back to sales – money in the bank for your business.

4: Decide your terms

This is a relationship and you need to state exactly what each party expects and will be delivered. So think about what you will be giving, whether that a product or you’re paying, the value of those things and then think about what you expect. Make a list of what this includes i.e.
X number of mentions
1 x post on feed including these tags and hashtags, links
2 x mentions in Stories including these tags and hashtags and swipe up links

You can then reach an agreement with the influencer on what is going to happen so you both know what is expected from each of you. You then have metrics you can measure for your ROI by looking at your analytics, see where there has been website traffic to your store from the day the post/story went out and look at that monetary conversion.

5: Does it fit in with your bigger picture?

Working with an influencer is the same as any marketing activity you have planned, asked yourself does it fit? It is right for where you want to go with the business, does it work with your other activities you have planned? It should ideally fit in with your other strategies and ideas – remember all the marketing cogs work as one.

*A new term on the block*

Nano-influencers. These are accounts with roughly 1000-5000 following (remember to take a look at their followers too and see if they align with your target audience) and they are now having quite high engagement on Instagram due to lower following and closer relationships with their followers. So it could be worth looking at this type of influencer and how this might work for your business.

The New York Times published an article on this just recently. Take a look here.

I hope this blog has helped you think about how you can work with influencers in your business, what to look for and more importantly what to ask when working together.

If you want to look at what a good engagement rate is and what that looks like here is a handy selection of tools from Influencer Marketing Hub.

How do I start a family Blog?

 

You want to start a family-focused blog but not sure where to begin? Here are some tips to help you.

Blogging is a fantastic space to document what is going on in your life, your opinions about things, creating communities, bringing like-minded individuals together – there are so many benefits to starting a blog. Having one that focuses on family, and your family is a brilliant way to start because you will no doubt have content that people can relate to and that’s why we like reading blogs. We read stories about what people are doing or going through and we connect with them. We also like reading them to see what amazing things people have discovered or places they’ve been to and recommend. Blogging is a huge online area and there is space for everyone. We all have unique voices and we have all something to say.

What is it going to be about?

When starting up with a blog you do need to think first and foremost what your blog is going to be about – perhaps you really love the area that you live so you want to bring content to other parents in that area or even outside visitors about all the amazing things you can do there as a family. You might just want to document your parenting journey and how you’re finding it. Maybe you’ve always been interested in fashion and now want to blog about what styles you have found work for you as a parent. The ideas are endless, but to begin you need to find yours.

What platform should I use?

So you have your idea of what you want to be talking to people about so the next thing to look at is where are you going to do it? What platform are you going to use? I would always recommend WordPress because it is a brilliant platform for blogs. You will often find that most blogs are on WordPress.com as it is free and there are lots of templates you can use to create a nice blog. The interface is really nice and simple too so you don’t have to get too overwhelmed everytime you want to post.

With WordPress.com you can sometimes find that customisation can be quite limited to the templates you choose and that to get a bit more flexibility you might need to look at their Business package and if you really want a nice template possibly even consider purchasing a premium one too. However I do think it’s important that I highlight that there are two WordPresses – WordPress.com and WordPress.org – both the same company but both have different functions, features and flexibility. If you want to have a read through the difference between the two you can on my post here.

This is where you need to think about what exactly you want from your blog and what scope you want it to have. For example, if eventually, you would like to have a Shop integrated with your blog then WordPress.org would be a better choice. If you wanted your blog to have scope to potential run as a business where you may need additional functions again I would look at WordPress.org. The same if you want to create a truly bespoke blog design I would use WordPress.org.

Thinking about getting “found”

Now you’re going to need to think with a marketing head here too because you do want your content to get found and read by people and you can’t just rely on Social Media for this. So when looking at a platform take into account SEO ( Search Engine Optimisation) which is what you need on your pages and blog posts so you get “found” in Google when people search for keywords or topics that could relate to your blog posts – for example

“How to get creative with vegetables so your kids will eat them”

This is the title of your post, fab! But you now need to make sure that you can create a unique page title for this post and be able to customise the description of the page. This isn’t the blog content itself this is in addition and this is your SEO.

To show you in real terms.

I popped this very blog title example into Google and this was the top search result

 

And this is a blogger.

That Purple line you can see, that’s her unique page title.

The green is the link to the post.

The text after the date is the description, which sadly cuts off and isn’t as SEO friendly as it could be, ideally these should be 160 characters. But you can see where it has picked up the keywords in her content on her post as these are shown in bold.

This is why when choosing a platform for your family focused blog you need to think about whether you can edit your SEO for your blog posts as this will determine how you content gets ranked and how visible it is for people searching.

Should I care that much about design?

This is really down to personal preference and what you want from your blog. You may just want to focus on the content alone and aren’t bothered too much about the look of it for your readers. Blogger’s like The UnMummsy Mum first created her blog on Blogger and for years kept the blog on this however now she has a nice new design for the site which actually makes it more like a website than a blog (it’s lovely) with lots of different pages for people to choose from without losing that blog feel.

Another favourite of mine is Fritha’s otherwise known as Tigerlily Quinn she has a lovely design that also really fits with the content she talks about and her personality.

So really, when it comes to the design of your blog it is down to what you want it to be and represent. For me personally I love a nice blog that takes me on a journey, it’s visually pleasing and a nice layout for me to follow. However, the most important thing above all will always be your content and what you are sharing with the world.

 

Why experimenting with your Social Media is good for your business

Trial and Error with Social Media

I think personally that we can all get into a vacuum with our Social Media. It can truly run the roost in our businesses and often we can be so under it’s spell that it means we stay “safe”. The constant changes in algorithms mean that we can feel like slaves to it, worried about changing things up in case we upset the current rules and our content drops off the face of the feed. This is a real shame.

Of course there are tips and tricks you can follow to help get your content noticed by your audience, but really what social media boils down to is what it was always about – creating engaging content for your audience. This is the foundation of social, you create the content, people engage, you interact and you have conversations. You are being “social” in a digital space with people across the country, the world even. What a fantastic thing it is, and don’t get me wrong there are plenty of ways in which social media isn’t there for good and I’m sure we’ve all seen the ugly side with people we love to follow or even experienced it ourselves – but I’m not here to talk about that. I want to talk about how in business we can stay stuck and lose our inner child characteristic to play and experiment.

Switching things up on your social media does not mean your business will suddenly fail overnight or you’ll lose a hundred followers, on the contrary you could even see increases or the drop might actually be people who aren’t your target customer in the first place – so you shouldn’t be sad about them (it’s not a numbers game after all remember?). I think trying things out on your social media platforms is the only way you will truly know what works and what doesn’t for your business and for your audience.

Ways to switch things up

If you feel that engagement has been a bit flat lately why not take 30 mins to look at your last 20 posts, look at the content you shared, your comments, your voice – what got engagement, what date or time did you send it? Ask yourself these questions and make a note. Using this information give yourself a new format for the next week, try new times of the day – use your insights to give you ideas.

Perhaps your feed hasn’t exactly gone the way you wanted, maybe you want more colour or a bit of a theme to it – try it, test it out and see after about 20/30 posts what the change has been , what have you noticed? Are people engaging more?

Maybe you even need to take a bigger leap and drop a platform – perhaps you joined this particular one because you thought “you had to” and in reality you’re finding it a strain on your time, your brain and instead of enjoying it it’s a slog. If it’s not working you can either invigorate new life into it by having a strategy in place or maybe you say Goodbye and drop it altogether – you control this and the choice is yours.

 

Don’t be afraid

As I’ve said above it’s so easy to feel scared about changing things be that posting times, content, the look of your feed – but don’t be scared, don’t let fear rule you. It’s your feed and you can try out things as much as you like, you’re finding what works and the only way to find out what works is by experimenting!

If some things don’t work out, that’s fine, learn from them and move on to the next at least you’ll know and you’ll be stronger for it, not weaker.

Give it a go and let me know if you do try to shake things up and how you get on I’d love to know.

Why Planning helps and how to do it!

Planning…what a word

 

I’ve always been a bit of an organised freak. Don’t get me wrong I’m not like Monica Geller levels but I do like to have things tidy, organised and feel like I’m together. I won’t lie, that all kind of went out the window a bit when I had our daughter and the things I used to love being in control of so much sort of fell by the way side. It happens though, I wasn’t crushed by it to be honest I actually found it forced me to relax a little bit and let things go.

When I became a business owner however I realised once again how having my “stuff” together meant I had a better day. I felt more on top of things, less overwhelmed and like I was going to achieve. So why does having a plan help so much and how can you start doing it?

Starting small

 

I think when it comes to planning the best thing to do is to start small. Start by creating a To Day list so don’t think of all the things you need to do in the world for your business, you know that huge every growing to-do list you look at, cry at and then go to Instagram to escape from. I’m talking about your To Day list – what are you wanting to achieve today, just today, however many hours you choose to work.

 

Be Realistic

 

The key when planning your To Day list and with any planning is to be realistic. If you are only working 5 hours a day because you are juggling your childcare or even another job what can you realistic achieve in that time that’s going to work for you. Don’t think everything, think something. Because that some thing you achieve that day is one thing more off the larger to-do list – it’s achievement. If you don’t be real with yourself and what you can do that’s when this creeps in…

 

 

Overwhelm

 

Oooh it’s like a dirty word isn’t it, but it’s everywhere. I don’t think I go through one day on Instagram where I don’t see a post about the dreaded overwhelm. If I was to visual it I think it would look like that stuff in the Netflix’s show Stranger Things, you know the black stuff that engulfs everything – that’s overwhelm to me and I don’t like. I don’t like feeling like it and it breaks my heart to see others feel like it too.

via GIPHY

We can help combat overwhelm with planning. I always love to grab a bit piece of paper and draw out the month, then I plot down all the things I know are coming up – events, offers, new services, new opts in etc. If you’re a product based business this could be new lines, new stock, promotions, your newsletter etc. Get them all down and scribbled. Then think about where you are going to promote all these things. You’re starting to form a plan.

Help is always at hand

 

As business owners there are fabulous communities online to help us through the fog we often find ourselves in – isn’t it fab? You maybe working alone at home but you have a ton of virtual colleagues around you. If you’re feeling the overwhelm reach out, shout out, ask for help because it’s out there and trust me we all need a helping hand sometimes.

I specialise in helping businesses get clear and out of this fog by having a plan in place, so if you want to chat about how I can help you let’s hop on a FREE call and talk about it. It’s what I’m here for.