Google Analytics For Writers

Google AnalyticsBeing a writer nowadays necessitates having more skills than just being able to spell and use the third conditional. Technology and the Internet have become so much a part of books and book marketing that it is impossible to avoid learning new skills. Writers now have to be computer literate and adapt to a rapidly changing literary world.

Whether a writer is traditionally or self-published, there is no escaping the need now to promote yourself. Yes, yourself first, your books second. The three key facets of Internet promotion are Social Media, a well written and maintained blog and a website. But how do you know if you are succeeding? How do you know if your blog is being read? How do you measure your presence?

There are a plethora of free data collecting services available on the Internet, but the first and most essential is Google Analytics. It’s free and can be used to track both your website and blog. The information it gathers is extremely detailed and includes visits, page views, top content, referring sources, entrance pages and bounce rates just to name a few of the types of information available. Webmaster Tools, also by Google is the second essential. This service assists in getting your content listed by Google and therefore easier to find on the Internet. It also details search queries and links to your blog and website. There are many other tools available, but for your blog and website these two are a must.

Your success on Social Networks can also be measured. If you have a Facebook Page, ‘Insights’ is a data tracking service provided by Facebook. Hootsuite, a Twitter desktop application, includes very good analytics to track ‘clicks’, popular links and regions. If your blog is hosted on WordPress, there is a free plugin Social Metrics that measures your effectiveness on all the major Social Networking services.

If you are to have any chance of success in marketing yourself and your books, you have to understand your market. So get ‘tooled up’ and you’ll stand a much better chance of being a bestseller.

10 thoughts on “Google Analytics For Writers”

  1. Okay. Here’s a request: Can we have a Yalla post? Haven’t had one for a looooong loooong time! :(

  2. Walter E. Haas


    Writers please correct my mistakes as references may be incorrect.A sin may have been committed.I have written on internet,but believe there is a failure of communication.Analytics is what it is about.Google may understand???

    Topic:Never Disagree by Derek Hains Oct 2, 2011.Please read my comments
    in two parts.A writer may have the answer.

    Walter E. Haas Search God Bless America

  3. Interesting comparison Derek. I downloaded Google Analytics and fired it up yesterday. To put it bluntly, it’s crap! Its only showing two hits on my blog. I’ll be sticking with my blogspot stats ta very much. It works well, unlike Google Analytics. :)

  4. Maimonides wrote, “Teach thy tongue ‘I do not know’ and thou shalt progress.” As a total novice in cyperspace, I’ll be taking that advice frequently! So my question is, why do I need both a website and a blog? I find I can say everything I want to say on the blog. I’m going to look into the tools that you suggest. I just started on Facebook and frankly I find it baffling. Twitter, on the other hand, I took to right away and am having success there. After all, it enabled me to find somebody named Derek Haines and his absolutely wonderful “Vandal”!

    1. Firstly, thank you for the undeserved compliments Lorinda :)

      But your website question is very interesting. I know my website only receives less that 10% of my blog, but it does serve a purpose. For those who stumble across me, it does give more information than what is on my blog or various social media sites. I still think it is useful for that purpose. To give people who are interested an opportunity to find out what I am about. Few know that I am a teacher for example, or have a musical side. This I think is important to keep in place.

      But come the day Wikipedia (in my dreams) decorate me with an entry, I’ll keep it. lol

  5. I just finished my first two books. They were fanfiction books and did very well. I have rewritten them and believe they are publishable. But as I look into how to publish – self/agent – I am overwhelmed and confused. I am hoping you or someone out there would be willing to walk me through or talk me through what is the best way to go and first steps I should take. is anyone willing to be my mentor? I am a VERY willing apprentice! :) Please reach out to me. Thanks!

    [email protected]

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