Top 6 Tools To Help You Track Social Media Metrics From Within Your WordPress Dashboard
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As an online publisher, you’re generating reams of data every day. In other words, you have unprecedented access to data that shows how your content is consumed and acted upon by readers. Of course not all this info is useful to your business but as data becomes bigger, more social and shareable, there’s definitely a part of it that will be relevant for customer acquisition and retention.
Posting regularly and being active and engaged in social media will not give your business the edge. Instead, a deliberate and planned approach to social media engagement is what will keep you ahead. The secret is to identify the specific social data that is relevant to your business needs so that you build a social media strategy that gives you a clear competitive advantage.
Which Tools To Use?
As social data continues to grow exponentially, making sense of it gets more complicated too. Thankfully, there’s a plethora of tools designed to help you make sense of your social media data.
There are lots of metrics you can track but generally you want to focus on more nuanced stats while shunning basic counts and totals. In this post, I share six of the top tracking tools and services you can use to manage your social media metrics right from within your site’s dashboard.
Social Media Metrics
The best way to gauge the performance of your posts on social media is by tracking user activity on those posts. Social Media Metrics plugin makes that process a breeze by collecting relevant data from popular social media networks – six to be precise – and then displaying the stats in a newly created dashboard.
As with most social media tracking tools, the concept behind Social Metrics Tracker is simple – identify popular topics and focus on those for future content.
There’s a handy Spreadsheet export feature with which you can export your data to a spreadsheet for further analysis, but the feature is only available on the pro version.
If you’re developer, you’ll like the fact that you can use this data in a host of other WordPress components provided you can write custom code for that component to use the data.
WP Social Stats focuses on the most vital info regarding the performance of your content on social media platforms. It strips away the complexity typical of analytical tools and only provides you with key data that helps you determine whether your content on social media is working or not.
The plugin displays results in tabular format so that you can easily make comparisons. This way you can establish the kind of content that receives a lot of user engagement, usually through metrics such as rate of sharing of a particular post.
Besides tracking and analytics, WPSocial Stats can also give you a little boost in terms of sharing your content: you simply click the relevant box for the social media network you want to share your post on.
With that said, this plugin hasn’t been updated for almost a year and the link to the official plugin page was broken as of the time of this writing. Nevertheless, it’s a free plugin so you can go ahead and give it a test run.
Easy Social Metrics Pro is a premium plugin available at codecanyon marketplace and comes with all the expected bells and whistles of social media tracking tools. Notably, it integrates with 12 top social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, Google+, StumbleUpon, LinkedIn, Reddit, among others.
You’ll see your best performing blogs displayed in green while those with little activity are displayed in red. A notable downside is that there’s no export to Spreadsheet function.
The Social Metrics Pro plugin was built to make media tracking as simple as possible. There is a free and pro version. The difference between the two is that the pro version provides advanced search options – you can search by post author, date, category, or date. In addition, you can export your data to CSV with the pro format, a nifty feature that many WordPress users will find particularly handy.
And if you want to show off your best performing posts on social media, you can easily do that via a widget.
In terms of platform integration, Social Stats Panel lacks depth as it only integrates with three social media networks – Facebook, Twitter, and Google+. But considering that it’s free, there’s no reason not to try it especially if your social media efforts are focused on these three platforms.
Collected data is presented in graphical format for easy reading and interpretation. There’s a graph for each of the three platforms and you can sort your posts based on their popularity on the social networks, i.e. number of likes, tweets, or pluses.
The Social Stats Panel shows you how your posts are performing on a daily basis so that you can optimize the content you post on social media networks.
Finally, we have the Google Analytics Dashboard for WordPress, which is basically a plugin that displays your site’s traffic stats in your dashboard. As you probably know, Google Analytics is the most comprehensive traffic analytics tool. Unlike the previous tools we’ve looked at, Google Analytics sources data from all your traffic sources and that includes social media networks. Obviously, this may be a drawback in some way as you cannot focus on social media data alone so it’s best to use it alongside another social media focused tools, like one of the plugins mentioned here.
With that said, you ought to own a Google Analytics account as someone who owns a website because you’ll want to make sense of your site’s overall traffic metrics and optimize your content and SEO accordingly.
It’s wise to have a social media metrics tool for your WordPress site in order to better understand how your target audience receives your posts. This way, your social media marketing strategy will be more deliberate and focused. Which of these tools do you currently use of to make sense of your social media traffic? I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject!
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Brenda Barron is a writer from southern California. Her work has appeared on sites like Elegant Themes, WPMU DEV, and VentureBeat. She also blogs at Digital Inkwell about the life of a freelance blogger.