Being successful isn’t just about hard work and it isn’t just about luck. It’s about being strategic about your actions.
For me, it’s been about setting a goal, creating a system for checking my progress, and then achieving that goal. But it doesn’t end there.
The most important step is what comes after I achieve my goal. It is analyzing my success (and my failures) and making the adjustments necessary to maximize that success in the future.
Isn’t this what we do in every other aspect of our lives?
We want to achieve something. We set out to do so. We stumble, we fall, we keep trying, and we eventually get there (or not). Then at some point we realize that we’ve learned a lesson in the process (hopefully). We then use what we’ve learned to do things differently next time. This is how we grow and this is how we get better all the time.
Why should we treat our online business any differently?
So today I want to share with you a simple tool I use to track my progress and maximize my efforts for constantly increased success. It’s called Google Analytics and you can set it up for free right in the dashboard of your WordPress blog.
USING GOOGLE ANALYTICS TO TRACK YOUR BLOG’S SUCCESS
Google Analytics is a simple-to-use but very powerful tool for tracking just about every aspect of your blogging activities. It will tell you how many people are coming to your blog each day, how long they’re spending with you, how many of your posts they’re looking at, and how exactly they found you.
You can use this information to increase certain efforts that you can see brings in valuable traffic and also decrease any efforts that you can tell aren’t paying off. I use Google Analytics every day (actually multiple times a day) and I learn new things about my blogging businesses because of it. So here’s how you can benefit from it too.
SETTING UP GOOGLE ANALYTICS FOR YOUR WORDPRESS BLOG
Before we start, if you do not have a Google Analytics account, get one started here. It’s quick and it’s free:
If you already have a Google account of some kind (like gmail), just click the blue “Access Analytics” button. If not, hit the link below that says “Sign up now” and create an account. Once you’ve done that, click on “Sign Up” to sign up for Google Analytics. Set up your account for your blog.
Once you’ve created your account, you’ll get a chunk of scary looking code. Don’t fear. We’ll come back to this in a second. For now, simply right click in the window with the code and “copy” it. Now we can open up a new window or tab in your browser and head into your WordPress admin panel.
We’re almost done with this step. In your admin panel under “Appearance”, click “Editor”. On the right under “Theme Files”, click “Footer”.
You’ll see a mess of ugly code. At the bottom, put your cursor just above where it says: </body>
In other words:
Now right click and “paste” that Google Analytics code you copied earlier. Click the blue “Update file” button. Now back on the Google Analytics site, click “Continue” below the code. It hasn’t hooked up yet because it takes a minute but at this point, you’re done. Congratulations! Within 24 hours, Google will begin tracking everything about your blog and providing you with this valuable information all day and night long.
Now for my favorite little tool to compliment this one.
SEEING GOOGLE ANALYTICS FROM YOUR WORDPRESS DASHBOARD
So that you never have to log in to Analytics just to find out stats about your blog, how about seeing it all right there in your dashboard? There’s a free, easy-to-install plugin called “Google Analytics Dashboard” so in your admin panel, scroll down to “Plugins” and click “Add New”.
Search for “google analytics dashboard” and install it. Activate the plugin. Now on the left in your admin panel, under “Settings”, click the new “Google Analytics Dashboard”. Log in using your google account and then select your blog from the drop down, “Available accounts”. Save your changes and you’re done!
Click “Dashboard” on the top left of your admin panel and you’ll see where your plugin is going to show from now on. Once Google Analytics begins tracking, you’ll see detailed stats in your dashboard that will help you adjust your efforts to maximize success.
Now it’s how you use those stats and make those adjustments that will be the key to your success as a blogger.