Author Archives: Kristi Hines

About Kristi Hines

Kristi Hines is a freelance writer, blogger, and ghostwriter. She is a HubSpot Inbound Marketing Certified Professional who develops high-quality content for businesses.

How to Monitor Your Entire Business in One Dashboard

When it comes to your business, there are so many things to monitor. You have to keep track of your incoming revenue, analytics, social audience, keyword rankings, mentions, email open rates, etc. It can be a little overwhelming. Fortunately, you can create a comprehensive dashboard that puts all of this data in one place.

Benefits of the One Dashboard Approach

Here are a few reasons why you need a comprehensive dashboard for your business.

1. It stops you from wasting time going from one data source to the next.

Do you feel like you spend half the day going between several websites to see where you are in terms of PayPal balance, website visitors, email subscribers, Twitter followers, so on and so forth? A comprehensive dashboard (like the one we’re about to create in this post) will put all of that data on one screen.

2. It reminds you of all of your marketing efforts.

Did you forget about your Instagram or Pinterest account lately? A one-stop dashboard for your business will remind you about those things you have set up for your business but have neglected lately.

3. It alerts you to any major problems.

Worried about getting a link penalty warning in Google Webmaster Tools or a decrease in traffic to your website? Your business dashboard can allow you to check all of those things quickly on a daily basis so you don’t miss a potential problem that you’ll want to take care of sooner than later.

What to Include in Your Entire Business Dashboard

The sky is the limit when it comes to what you can include in your comprehensive dashboard. Here are a few key areas to start with.

Financials at a Glance

Every business owner cares about their bottom line. You can add widgets from FreshBooks, Quickbooks, PayPal, Infusionsoft, Shopify, and Xero to your comprehensive business dashboard to see where your business is at financially.

Website Diagnostics at a Glance

You’ll want to know if your website is up and running at all times. A widget from Pingdom will allow you to connect to your Pingdom account (with free monitoring of one domain) and see your website’s current status.

Analytics at a Glance

If you use Google Analytics, there are dozens of widgets you can add to get insights into the data you want most, such as overall traffic, referral sources, and conversions. You can also include data from Alexa, Chartbeat, Compete, GoSquared, MixPanel, Quantcast, and Unbounce.

Search Positioning at a Glance

Important information about your search position, such as keyword rankings, number of backlinks, and domain authority can all be tracked by SERPs and Moz widgets. You can also plug in a widget for your Google Webmaster Tools to see if you have messages from Google about link penalties and malware. It will also allow you to see the number of crawl errors Google is experiencing on your website, keywords that lead visitors to your site, and additional information.

Social Media Marketing at a Glance

To ensure that your social media marketing strategy is going well, you’ll want to monitor the growth of your social media audience and engagement. You can choose a variety of widgets for Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, Google+, and LinkedIn for your comprehensive business dashboard that will track your growth.

Email Marketing at a Glance

Widgets that connect to Aweber, Campaign Monitor, Constant Contact, GetResponse, iContact, MailChimp, and SendGrid will allow you to monitor your email marketing activity. In particular, you can watch your subscriber growth and vital stats about recent email campaigns using widgets from top email marketing software providers.

Monitoring at a Glance

Google Alerts, Twitter search, and Google+ search widgets will allow you to keep tabs on any mentions about your business on the web. You can also tap into RSS feeds from other sources such as Trackur and Mention using the RSS widget to get your mentions through those apps inside your comprehensive business dashboard.

The Big Picture

So what does a comprehensive business dashboard look like? Click the image below to see the full-size view of the one I use for my business.

As you can see, this is home to all of the data I need on a daily basis. It reduces my stat-checking time in less than a half of what it used to be without reducing my ability to know how my business as a whole is doing.

The best part is you don’t have to stop with the widgets shown above. You can also pull in project management data from Basecamp, CRM data from Salesforce, registration data from GoToWebinar, customer service data from Zendesk, and data from custom sources including CSV, RSS, and similar filetypes. The possibilities for your comprehensive business dashboard are endless!

In Conclusion

As you can see, you can create a powerful all-in-one dashboard that will satisfy the needs of any business. In addition to the dashboard, you can also use Cyfe to send out regular email reports to yourself, your boss, and your clients, making it easier to keep track of important business metrics, data, and activity. To create your own all-in-one dashboard, be sure to sign up for Cyfe today!

How to Use a Competitor Dashboard to Destroy Your Competition

Competitors. They can be great teachers for those who are just starting out. They can be great role models for those wondering how much they can achieve. In general though, your goal is to beat the competition – or get as close to beating them as possible. It’s not productive to visit their Twitter account daily to see if they’ve got new followers, or going to Alexa to monitor their daily rankings. Fortunately, you can condense your competitor research time by getting all of the goods into one dashboard. In this post, we’re going to look at all of the ways you can keep on top of the competition, one widget at a time.

Monitoring the Competition’s Website

First, we’re going to start with some important website data pertaining to traffic and search. You can start by creating widgets for your competitor’s website traffic rankings on Alexa, along with their daily visitors measured by Quantcast. This can give you an idea of where your website ranks next to theirs.

competitor research dashboard

You can also create widgets to monitor your competitor’s back links, mozRank, and rankings for specific keywords using the moz and SERPs widgets.This can give you an idea of how well your website ranks in search and authority compared to your competitors.

competitor research dashboard

Combined, this can give you an idea of which competitors are getting the best traffic, links, and reputation in search. If you’re just starting out an SEO campaign, this will give you a clue as to which competitors you want to do some backlink research from first.

Monitoring the Competition’s Content Strategy

Content is an important part of any business’s marketing strategy, and one way to figure out what topic ideas would resonate well for your audience is to see what your competitor’s are writing about. Using the RSS widget, you can subscribe to your competitor’s blog and look at their latest topics alongside each other.

competitor research dashboard

This can help you analyze topics along with how often your competitor’s update their blog and the opening line to each of their latest posts.

Monitoring the Competition’s Email Marketing Strategy

While you can’t monitor your competitor’s email marketing analytics (opens, clicks, etc.), you can see the headlines, copy, and frequency at which they email their list. Subscribe to your competitor’s mailing list using a dedicated Gmail address for just that purpose, and create a widget that will show you the latest unread messages in your inbox.

competitor research dashboard

At a glance, you’ll be able to keep up with frequency and subject lines. You can then click through to see the emails that look the most interesting.

Monitoring the Competition’s Social Media Strategy

Want to keep up with your competitor’s followers and tweeting frequency? You can do just that with the Twitter overview widget.

competitor research dashboard

You can also monitor the latest mentions of your competitors on Twitter, for better or worse. This can give you insight into customer support issues and how well affiliates promote your competitor’s products.

competitor research dashboard

You can use the Instagram overview widget to monitor the number of photos shared and followers accumulated by your competitors.

competitor research dashboard

You can monitor the same, but with pins and boards, for your competitors using the Pinterest overview widget.

competitor research dashboard

These widgets can give you some insight into your competitor’s social media strategy including how active they are and how successful they are at gaining and engaging their audience.

Monitoring the Competition’s Reputation

Last, but not least, is your competitor’s reputation. Major news about your competition can lead to new business ideas and opportunities for you. Using Google Alerts, you can monitor your competitor’s latest mentions in the news.

competitor research dashboard

This can give you insight into their latest talked about advertising strategies, new products and services, crises, and so much more. You can also use Google Alerts widgets to monitor mentions of your competitors in blogs to find out what sites might write about your business as well.

In Conclusion

Using a competitor monitoring dashboard can give you an insight into your competitor’s overall marketing strategy for content, email, search, and social media. Using the data you find here can help you figure out what strategies work, and which ones you need to start improving on for your own business. To create your own competitive dashboard, be sure to sign up for Cyfe today!

How to Build an Effective Web Analytics Dashboard

Whether you are managing one website or hundreds for yourself or your clients, one thing is for certain. There are a lot of analytics out there that you must review to ensure that your online marketing strategies are working. But the last thing any busy professional wants to do is log in from one tool to the next to see the data they need. Fortunately, a dashboard is the answer. In this post, we’re going to look at how you can create an effective analytics dashboard that will cut down the time you spend getting to your analytics, giving you more time to actually review your data.

Essential Google Analytics Widgets

While Cyfe also has widgets for analytics from Chartbeat, GoSquared, and Mixpanel, we’re going to start with Google Analytics since it’s the top choice in free web analytics tools. There are over 100 Google Analytics widgets to choose from covering metrics for your AdWords, apps, audience, content, conversions, commerce, and traffic sources. Think about the areas in Google Analytics you visit the most. For example, your audience overview…

web analytics dashboards - Google Analytics

Top traffic sources…

web analytics dashboards - Analytics top traffic sources

Real time visitors…

web analytics dashboards - Real-time visitor information

Top landing pages…

web analytics dashboards - Google Analytics Top Landing Pages

And, of course, your conversions.

web analytics dashboards - Google Analytics - Goal Conversions

As you can see, getting your favorite pieces of Google Analytics data for one website in one quick dashboard at a glance can be valuable in and of itself.

web analytics dashboards - complete dashboard example

You can also create a dashboard that looks at important data from all of your websites at one glance.

web analytics dashboards - multiple websites

Now, let’s look beyond Google Analytics to other data you’ll want to keep track of for your websites.

Essential Google Webmaster Tools Widgets

Serious web masters who want their websites to perform well in Google use Google Webmaster Tools, and for good reason. This is where you can get a peek into what Google thinks of your website. The overview widget will show you if you have unread messages, crawl errors, and the number of pages indexed from your site map along with the top internal and external keywords for your website.

web analytics dashboards - webmaster tools keywords

You can also have a widget to preview the messages inside your GWT account.

web analytics dashboards- Search Console preview of messages

And you can get a quick glance at the URLs on your website that are resulting in crawl errors.

web analytics dashboards - webmaster tools crawl errors

Put these widgets together for one or more websites in your analytics dashboard, and now you’ve brought two powerful Google tools into one place. But let’s not stop there…

More Essential Web Analytics Widgets

Want to know what other analytics tools think about your website? Why not add an Alexa widget to keep track of your traffic rank…

web analytics dashboards - Alexa Traffic Rank

A Quantcast widget to keep track of their assessment of your daily visitors…

web analytics dashboards - Quantcast Daily Visitors

And a Pingdom widget to keep track of your website’s downtime (monitor one website with a free account).

web analytics dashboards - Pingdom Website Monitoring

Add these widgets for one or more websites into your dashboard for the ultimate overview of all of your website’s important analytics data.

Even More Analytics Widgets

If those weren’t enough for you, you can even start to mix in analytics from beyond your website. For example, you could line up your web analytics data next to widgets for the following.

  • Google AdSense earnings, pageviews, clicks, CTR, CPC, and RPM.
  • Google AdWords cost, impressions, clicks, and conversions.
  • Emails sent, bounces, unsubscribes, opens, and clicks from Aweber, Constant Contact, MailChimp, GetResponse, and other mailing list services.
  • Google Alerts for mentions of your website or business.
  • Moz back links, external links, mozRank, domain authority, and page authority.
  • Daily keyword rankings in SERPs.
  • Analytics from Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.
  • Open support tickets from Zendesk.

The possibilities to monitor one or more websites are endless!

In Conclusion

As you can see, dashboards can help you cut down the mindless time spent logging into, navigating around, and browsing your web analytics data. This way, you can spend more time getting valuable information to help your website and business grow and move forward. To create your own web analytics dashboard, be sure to sign up for Cyfe today!

Track Keyword Rankings and Backlinks on an All-in-One SEO Dashboard

Are you a marketer working on SEO projects for clients, or simply working on your own SEO? If so, then you’ll want a way to track your progress and efforts as well as monitor your competitor’s. In this post, we’re going to look at how you can use Cyfe to track keyword rankings, backlinks, and other important data in an all-in-one SEO dashboard.

Monitoring Your Website’s Status in Search

To get started, the first thing you will want to monitor for your website (and your client’s) is your current authority in search. A SEOmoz (now Moz) widget will do this for you without requiring you to have a paid account with Moz. Simply enter the website’s domain and you’ll get the following data.

SEO Moz Overview

Next, there’s a good chance that the search engine you are focusing on most for your SEO efforts is Google. Therefore, it would be in your best interest to make sure your website (and your client’s) is set up in Google Webmaster Tools. This is Google’s free tool to alert you with website issues, such as malware or penalty warnings, crawl errors, indexed pages, and much more. Once you are set up, you can start adding Google Webmaster Tools widgets to your SEO dashboard that will show you the key information you need to know about your website’s health on Google.

Webmaster Tools Widget

As with all SEO campaigns, you probably have a list of primary keywords you are trying to get the website to rank for. Add a SERPs widget to your SEO dashboard to monitor your keyword rankings for a particular domain daily.

SERPs example

Speaking of keywords, the unfortunate thing is that Google Analytics no longer tracks a majority of the ones that lead visitors to your website through organic search. But sometimes, you can still get an insight into whether your organic search traffic is rising or decreasing by simply adding a Google Analytics widget to your dashboard that shows organic keywords under traffic sources.

Google Analytics Search Engine Keywords

Just in case you (or your clients) are curious about whether you need to target your overall SEO efforts to other search engines, you can also add a Google Analytics widget that shows the search engines that drive traffic to your website.

Google Analytics Search Engine Visits by Keyword

Logging Backlinks

One of the top methods you are likely using to help boost your website’s rankings (or your client’s) in search is link building. If you’re sharing your SEO dashboard with a boss or client, you’ll probably want to include the latest links to your website (or theirs) in your dashboard.

To do this, you’ll need to start by exporting your latest links into a CSV or Google Spreadsheet. If all you have is Google Webmaster Tools, you’ll want to look under Search Traffic > Links to Your Site and then use the option to download latest links. This will allow you to download the links to your website in Google Webmaster Tools to either a CSV or Google Spreadsheet.

Webmaster Tools Keyword Download

Once you’ve done this, you can use one of the custom widgets for CSV or Google Spreadsheets to import your latest backlinks into your SEO dashboard. The table view will give you a similar (but cleaner) look for your spreadsheet.

Cyfe Custom Widget view of Keywords

Essential SEO Widgets to Monitor Your Competitors

In addition to tracking a website’s SEO progress, you’ll likely want to track its competitors too. Fortunately, several of the widgets we mentioned above will work on any website, regardless of whether it is yours or not. These include:

  • SEOmoz (Moz) Widget – Monitor your competitor’s number of backlinks, number of external links, MOZrank, page authority, and domain authority.
  • SERPs Widget – Monitor your competitor’s rankings in search for keywords you are also targeting.
  • Custom CSV or Google Spreadsheet Widget – Analyze your competitor’s backlinks by exporting them from your backlinks research tool into a CSV or Google Spreadsheet, and then add them into a custom widget.

By doing this, your boss or your client will also get to see how their website is stacking up to competitors. It’s something that in most cases will keep you in your job!

In Conclusion

As you can see, you can create a powerful SEO dashboard that will satisfy the needs of any in-house or client-focused SEO professional. In addition to the dashboard, you can also use Cyfe to send out regular email reports to yourself, your boss, and your clients, making it easier to keep track of important business metrics, data, and activity. To create your own SEO dashboard, be sure to sign up for Cyfe today!

The Ultimate Social Media Dashboard

If there is one thing any social media user wants, whether they are a consultant managing multiple accounts or a business owner managing their own, it’s to see their essential social media analytics and data in one place without having to go to their various accounts one by one to measure their growth. Fortunately, visual dashboards can give anyone who needs to monitor their social media a one stop shop for the most important data. In this post, we’re going to build the ultimate social media dashboard with Cyfe to help you quickly get a full look of your social media activity.

Essential Social Media Analytics Widgets

First, let’s look at widgets you can use to see important analytics and data about your activity on the top social networks.

Facebook Page Widgets

Cyfe offers over 50 widgets for Facebook page insights that cover your overall metrics, stories, reach, impressions, clicks, check-ins, likes, views, and posts. While you could create a full dashboard of only Facebook widgets, here are the top priority ones you should include in your ultimate social media dashboard.

First, you have the overview widget that shows the top insights for your page. This one shows you the view if you were to look at your insights over the last year – it help pinpoints specific days that your page was the most popular.

facebook-page-overview-widget

Next, you have the top posts by likes widget. You can also configure this to show you your top posts by impressions, comments, or shares. It’s a great way to figure out which posts you should try to recreate in the future for the most engagement.

facebook-page-top-posts-widget

How are you driving exposure to your page? The impression types widget can show you whether it’s through mentions of your brand, fans, posts on your wall by you, posts on your wall by fans, or other types of posts.

facebook-page-impression-types-widget

For businesses that are targeting customers in a particular location, knowing where your likes are coming from can be an important factor. The likes country map widget can help you keep track of where your fans are based.

facebook-page-likes-by-country-widget

Local businesses will want to monitor their check-ins using the check-in widget. You can even use the text widget next to your check-ins widget to log particular events that might have driven more check-ins.

facebook-page-check-in-widget

Twitter Widgets

Next, let’s look at some widgets you can use to monitor your Twitter data.

First, we have the overview widgets that shows you the top analytics for your Twitter account. In addition to seeing your followers count grow, you can also see the frequency of your tweets, how many Twitter users have added you to Twitter lists, and the number of times your tweets have been favorited.

twitter-overview-widget

Next, the influencers widget will show you the top members of your Twitter community. Whether these are partners, colleagues, or customers, these are the people you should be working hard to engage with.

twitter-influencers-widget

While Klout can also include your influence upon other social networks besides Twitter, if you’ve never set up your Klout account, it will likely just include your influence on Twitter. You can use this to see whether your influence is increasing or decreasing amongst your audience.

twitter-klout-widget

LinkedIn

If you use LinkedIn to connect with other business professionals, there are two widgets you can use to monitor your network and company growth. You have the profile widget that will show you your current number of 1st degree and 2nd degree connections, along with updates from your 1st degree connections. These numbers are significant as they are the people you can connect with for business and job opportunities.

linkedin-profile-widget

If, alternatively, you are more interested in your company page, you can choose the company page widget to monitor your business’s followers on LinkedIn.

Additional Networks

In addition to the top networks, you can also monitor an overview of your profiles on Pinterest…

Instagram…

instagram-overview-widget

and YouTube.

youtube-overview-widget

Essential Social Media Widgets to Monitor Your Brand

In addition to monitoring your analytics and data from social media, you can also use widgets to monitor your brand mentions. In particular, you can use the Twitter search widget to create searches for mentions of your username, your brand name, public figures within your company, and unique product or service names.

twitter-search-widget

You can also use the Google+ search widget to find posts about your brand on Google+.

google-plus-search-widget

Essential Social Media Widgets to Monitor Your Competitors

Last, but not least, you can use some widgets to track the analytics and audience size of your competitors. These widgets include the following.

  • The Twitter overview widget for basic stats about your competitors audience size and activity.
  • The Twitter search widget to monitor mentions of your competitors and their unique products or services.
  • The Klout widget to monitor your competitor’s influence.
  • The Google+ search widget to monitor mentions of your competitors and their unique products or services.
  • The Pinterest widgets to monitor your competitor’s growth and activity.

In Conclusion

As you can see, you can create a powerful social media dashboard that will satisfy the needs of any social media professional or enthusiast. In addition to the dashboard, you can also use Cyfe to send out regular reports to yourself, your boss, and your clients, making it easier to keep track of important social media analytics, data, and activity. To create your own social media dashboard, be sure to sign up for Cyfe today!