Dashboard 50 – Personal blogger dashboard
This Google Analytics dashboard is right for you if
- you run a personal blog and want to know more about your readers
Contents of this personal blog dashboard
A total of 8 widgets make up this dashboard and give you insights into your audience.
- How do people find your blog?
- Which links drive traffic to your website?
- Which topics are your readers most passionate about?
- Are you friendly to visitors who read your blog posts on their handheld devices?
Description of dashboard widgets
This widgets shows which sources that drive traffic to your website.
It shows the amount of visitors (counted as number of devices that has surfed your site).
The “% New Visits” tells you how large a percentage of those visitors that already paid a visit to your website before this latest visit.
You can check out the specific widget settings below.
This widget shows which other sites that mention and link to your site and give you visitors.
The widget filters out some of the traffic which cannot be attributed to a specific webpage on the referring site.
You can add more filters or remove some of the existing ones, if you prefer.
Default settings for this widget are shown below.
This one is very straightforward, but still rather important.
In short it tells you whether anybody cares to read what you write.
Use the above widget to determine what your readers are passionate about.
It shows the Top 10 most visited pages on your website.
Although you as a personal blogger probably are not fully dependant on traffic from the search engines sites like Google, Yahoo and Bing can still help your increase your online reach.
This widget shows what people typed in the search engine’s input box before clicking through to your website.
A filter removes data where keyword information is not available, either before Google is hiding it (“not provided”) or because simply didn’t get to your website through a website (“not set”).
If you want know where your readers live or work, then this is the place to look.
The default setting is “Country / Territory”, but you can easily change the widget to show “Region” or “City” instead.
Ever wondered whether your readers are reading your wise words on their laptop or smartphone/tablet?
Here you will find the answer.
“Mobile = No” tells you that these visitors are using a desktop pc or a laptop (MacBooks/iMacs included).
“Mobile = Yes” equals smartphone or tablet.
This widget shows what screen resolutions that your readers are equipped with.
If your audience has tiny screens and your webdesign is not responsive (adapts to the screen size) then your readers will struggle to read your blog posts.
Things to look out for
As a blogger a widespread and active online network is a strong asset.
Fellow bloggers can help you by sending their readers your way by linking to your posts.
Write high quality blog posts that offer value to the readers then other people will naturally link to your posts from their own websites and through social media.
However, good manners are crucially important online, so do yourself a favour and use Widget 2 – Which kind people link to you? to discover some of the people that link to your website.
When they do, remember to say thank you. If not directly, then by doing them a favour something in the future. That will certainly make them more inclined to give more links in the future.
And these high quality links are important both for driving new readers to your website but also for improving your website’s rankings in the search engines.
The Widget 4 – Which posts are most popular? will help you identify the topics that your readers are most passionate about.
The amount of visitors is not a measure in itself (new posts and posts that you are pushing heavily through social media will always get often get the most visitors), but if you factor in the number of people that tweeted, Facebook liked or Google plussed your content then you should have a good feeling what your visitors want to read about.
Bounce rate is a measure that tells you how many people that leave your website viewing only a single page (the page they landed at).
A bounce rate of say 70% signifies that 7 out of 10 visitors only viewed one page on your website before leaving again.
Usually a low bounce rate is good, but if people found what they were looking at their first attempt, a high bounce rate might actually be ok.
The bounce rate is often a good proxy for whether or not your visitors are having a good experience.
Check out the bounce rates in Widget 7 – Is your audience mobile? and Widget 8 – How much can your visitors see?.
If the bounce rates are considerably higher on mobile devices and small resolutions then your website probably isn’t displaying well on small screens. (Read why you want a responsive webdesign here)
Typical pittfalls when looking at this dashboard
Google Analytics will not automatically track social interactions such as Google plusses, Facebook likes and Tweets of your webpages. You need to configure it manually (or pick a CMS platform that does it by default).
Remember that Widget 2 – Which kind people link to you? has a lot of filters applied.
By default it tries to show only fully traceable backlinks, i.e. links from sources such as Facebook is filtered out as Google Analytics cannot capture a specific URL when the referring site is Facebook.
This is a basic personal blogger dashboard that gives you an overview of your website and your audience without too much complex configuration.
At some point you probably want to get more advanced and identify exactly what you would like your audience to do, such as signing up to your newsletter or grabbing your RSS feed.
In short – this dashboard is a good starting point, but doesn’t tell the full picture.
We will shortly be designing a more advanced blogger dashboard that will also be measuring conversions/goal completions.
We are designing these dashboards because we are addicted to Tweets and Google +1 clicks.
Help us get our daily fix, will you?
Pick your favorite social media below