Most of us know social media is important to stay ahead in the competitive world of online marketing but we’re not always sure how important. No matter what type of business you have the chances are you have a Facebook and Twitter account set up for your business. Return on investment has been for the most part fairly elusive for marketers and business owners. It has been elusive but is one of the most important factors in deciding how much to invest into social media. Google Analytics has recently announced that they will be releasing social reports for all users. This probably will not be the end all for social media return on investment but I’m sure it will definitely be a step in the right direction.
According to Google they want to help you do 3 things:
- Identify the full value of traffic coming from social sites and measure how they lead to direct conversions or assist in future conversions
- Understand social activities happening both on and off of your site to help you optimize user engagement and increase social key performance indicators (KPIs)
- Make better, more efficient data-driven decisions in your social media marketing programs
There will be social reports that will allow the user to see at a glance how much conversion value is generated from all of your social channels. You should get a better understanding of how much a goal completion is worth from those that resulted from social referrals. There will also be conversion reports that will show the monetary value for each of your social channels and the money they bring to your business. There is also a social sources report that will let you see how visitors from different sources behave. This will be valuable since it gives you a clearer picture of how people are interacting and behaving on your site. It can help you optimize your website based of the flow or funnel your visitors take. You will also be able to see which articles are most commonly shared or recommended and which social networks there being shared on.
At this point we don’t really know if this new social media analytics feature will provide the ROI data that so many of us have been wanting but it should help us make better decisions. Social media is definitely a legitimate and exciting new medium for marketers and businesses but knowing how much it benefits us so we can decide how much to invest into it will be even more valuable to us.