Property managers (like any business owner) have to work hard to get new customers. Whether it’s investing in paid search, content marketing, or social media campaigns, sending out your message to the world demands time, money, and knowledge—above all else. And if you don’t have a baseline understanding of industry-standard marketing analytics, then your efforts might not reach their full potential.
So how do you know if your efforts are paying off? Sure, you put all of this content out there, but it probably feels like it goes out into the ether, with no way of knowing how it’s doing.
That’s where marketing analytics or metrics come in.
What Are Marketing Analytics?
Analytics allow you to measure just how well your website and your content is doing and how you can improve on your efforts.
If you host your site using a service like Squarespace or WordPress (and you’re not using the free version), you’ve probably already seen some of this data on your dashboard.
Statistics like pageviews, country of origin and pages per view give you some insight into how many people your site is attracting, where they’re coming from and how many pages they’re clicking on.
If you want to get more in-depth, you can use Google Analytics (GA). This free tool lets you really dig into your site to measure even the most minute detail about engagement.
Then, there’s the analytics coming from your social accounts. Here, you can track exactly how people are engaging with your social posts on each platform.
And if you have a newsletter, there are ways to track the engagement on those, too.
Which Marketing Analytics Do I Need to Know?
All of this is a lot. So, to help you get a handle on exactly what kinds of things you should be tracking, I’ve created a small glossary below to explain what the important metrics are, how to interpret them and how to use them to your advantage.
This metric is merely the number of visitors who viewed a certain page on your website at any given time. You can usually set the parameters of that time to get an idea of how many people are visiting a particular page weekly, monthly, in the last year and so on.
This is a very simple metric that gives you a broad view of how many people you’re attracting to your site, no matter how long they stay.
Time on Page
Time on page is exactly what it sounds like. It’s the amount of time a person stays on a certain page of your website. And while a long time-on-page sounds great, it’s only really valuable if that long stay turns into a phone call or an email, right?
If, for example, you see people are staying a long time on your Contact Us page, but you’re not getting a lot of form fill-outs, it could be that your form is confusing. You may need to tweak it to be more user-friendly.
Pages per Visit
The more pages per visit, the more people are liking what they’re seeing. They’re exploring your business to see if it’s the right fit, or they’re reading your spectacular blog content.
But if you’re seeing a number of pages per visit, but people are leaving without contacting you, then your contact information could be in a place visitors aren’t thinking to look.
Your bounce rate is expressed as a percentage. A high percentage means you have a lot of people coming to your site but leaving quickly (sometimes within the first 30 seconds, but it depends on how your analytics platform defines it). In any case, site visitors are not looking around or even reading the content on your landing page.
A high bounce rate could mean your users aren’t finding what they’re looking for. It could be they are looking for rental listings and finding only property management services, or that they believed your properties were in one area of town, but they turn out to be in another.
Being absolutely clear in your website title and description will help reduce confusion.
It could also be time to do some housekeeping on your site. According to inbound marketing company Hubspot, if your site looks dated, isn’t mobile-friendly or takes too long to load, visitors will leave. You may also lose customers if your contact information isn’t front and center.
Scroll depth tells you how far people are scrolling down your pages. If you notice people aren’t scrolling very far, but you put your newsletter signup way at the bottom, it may be time to move it up to where people can see it.
Likes are a social metric that can be called different things on different platforms. On Instagram, it’s just a heart symbol, for instance. A Like means someone found your content interesting. And if they like it, it shows up in their news feed for others to see, which is a good thing.
Shares are also called different things on different platforms. On Twitter, it’s called a retweet. On Pinterest, it’s a pin. Essentially, anytime someone distributes your content through their social channels, it’s a share—and it’s a lot better than a Like.
If people aren’t liking or sharing your content, it could be that they’re not finding it interesting, and it’s time to try another tactic.
Click-throughs are probably the best thing you can get on social media. That means someone actually clicked from your social post through to your site to check you or your content out.
A click-through also applies to emails and newsletters. If someone clicks through from one of those, you know your content is engaging enough to at least check out.
This metric simply counts the number of time someone opened your email or newsletter. If they opened it but didn’t click through on any of the content, you know that perhaps you need to change the kinds of things you’re offering.
How Can I Use Analytics to Improve My Marketing Strategy?
I’m sure you can see how different combinations of these metrics can give you different information. Your click-throughs from search or social may be great, but your bounce rate is high. That probably means users aren’t seeing they content they expected when they clicked from their social account.
You get the idea.
You can really use these metrics to see how your marketing efforts are faring.
What Marketing Tools Are Out There?
At this point you’re probably wondering how you can fit all of this into your already busy schedule. Sitting down and digging into all this data does take time, not to mention creating the content in the first place.
There are tools, though, that can help you manage it all. Here are just a few.
Hootsuite is a social media management platform that works with all major social media channels. It will help you plan posts, schedule them and even post them for you. It will then track how well they’re doing. All of your social channels show up on one dashboard, making it easy to keep track.
Hubspot is an all-in-one marketing platform used by a lot of small businesses. It lets you host your website, target and qualify leads, and manage your email and content marketing campaigns. Hubspot also offers helpful online courses and certifications to make you a better marketer.
MailChimp helps you create, manage and track your email campaigns. You can even use it to gather feedback from current clients and residents.
Ahrefs is a content planning tool. If you’re set on creating a blog, it can help you find the right topics and keywords to target. It can also give you insight on how your competitors’ sites are doing along with what content marketers call “content gap analysis.” This is essentially a way to see the topics and keywords that your competitors are ranking for in Google, that your site is not.
This is only your Analytics 101. There is so much more to consider, if you have the will and the drive. It may even be worth checking out the courses provided by Hubspot, or another marketing service. And for those who are looking for someone else to do the heavy lifting and generate a steady flow of property owner leads, we recommend All Property Management.
That said, getting a handle on online marketing and being able to track it can give your firm an edge. If you know how your audience is engaging with your content, what’s attracting them and what isn’t, you can build a site (and site content) that gains their trust, and then their business.Read more on Marketing