Today a hunting party contacted the ROI Hunters and claimed a victory in their hunt for ROI because a certain article they have placed on a signature site had many page views. We stopped and reviewed the limited information at hand and decided to make some improvements so we could better capture that elusive ROI.
As search engine marketers, we are hesitant in looking at just one number to claim we have achieved a goal. Rarely will we ever use page views or visitor sessions as a measurement to claim increase sales or leads. Any company who understands how the internet works can create a false sense of accomplishment if you only use these superficial statistics as your means to claim ROI victory.
When we asked this group the question, “How do you know they read it?”, they were unable to answer the question. The 1400 word article, which they spent considerable time writing and revising, was specifically designed as content rich for a specific key phrase, which they wanted to have people find when searching on the major search engines. Page views were steadily increasing. Their measurement tool could not tell them time spent on that specific page or click through path on that page. So how do you know if they actually read it?
Here was our suggestion. Break the 1400 word article up into two pages. Some revision will be needed to make sure the reader understands that some key information was now on the second page. In addition, the first page may need some further search engine optimization work to ensure its ranking continued to clime for the target phrase.
Now we can view our web stats and not only focus on the first page views but also determine if the second page was getting any page view. By having two pages to look at, you also increase the potential of two pages with call to actions. Each page’s call to actions could be the same or designed differently since you know now that you truly have an interested visitor on the topic target phrase. We would then also begin measuring how many call to actions were clicked on each page so that we could better understand if these pages were effective in attracting the right visitors.
We are now reviewing all their longer pages and will determine if a similar approach can be used to increase our measurement capabilities, increase pages views on commonly visited pages, and thus create more opportunities to introduce additional call to actions.