Last week, my friend Chris Bennett at 97th Floor and his brother Patrick at Modern Blue launched a new analytics package called BLVD Status that I am particularly excited about. I was one of the original pre-beta testers and was able to see this grow into a really powerful and helpful tool for anyone trying to better track their search & social media marketing efforts.
BLVD Status is an analytics program that has a live dashboard similar to something you would see in Have a Mint, but with really robust information like conversions, search engine rankings, outgoing link information, and many more data points. BLVD Status presents a slick and clean user interface, but I am more excited about the actual data it provides you. With many analytics programs I have tested, it seems like you can’t get the data you are looking for without custom programming and tweaking. Below, details about what features it currently includes, and what I would like to see in future releases.
BLVD tracks the following metrics:
RSS Feed Subscriber Conversion:
You can set up your RSS feed URL as a conversion. Every time you get a new subscriber to your blog (or website) through your RSS Feed or Email Subscribe, BLVD identifies the keywords or the referring URL that was used to access your site. This tool eliminates the guessing game of trying to trace back the origins of the traffic and subscribers. Now you can know for sure.
Live Keyword Rankings:
This is one of my favorite features and I believe that many SEOs will be fond of it as well. Every time the site gets a visit from a search phrase, BLVD will provide the original phrase, what engine it came from, and what is the current or average rank for that word in the search engines. You can segment this out so it shows you one or all engines and recent or all time search referrals. This gives you a quick overview of where you are ranking on terms that are used to find your site.
Digg This Button:
You can set up the “Digg This” button through BLVD Status to see who is voting on your story directly from your site. This is a great feature because cross-promotion on various social sites can lead to more Diggs if you have the button on your page, but I have always guessed as to whether Reddit, Mixx, StumbleUpon, Sphinn, or Twitter actually brings you the votes.
(Note: Chris has some excellent data on which sites perform better from his testing that he says he will be releasing later on his blog. One thing he told me is that Reddit usually does much better than StumbleUpon for giving you a better ‘Digg push’.)
The dashboard also includes Referring Domains and has some nice options with that, including foot traffic, site URLs, and outgoing links.
In Depth Detail:
At the bottom of almost all the dashboard boxes you will see an “In Depth” button. That shows detailed segmentation and calendar reporting settings. In the Conversions section you can compare dates and look at which words convert more and how often they do. There is also Geo IP info and much more. One of my favorite In Depth sections is the Site URLs section, where you can look at any URL on your site for any given date range and see the exact keywords that brought people straight to that URL, what referrers did the same, what outgoing links were used the most on the page, GEO IP info, and much more. It is a really good way to narrow down your analytics to one page at a time and really analyze what is going on within any given piece of Content.
Current Bugs or Limitations
Chris Bennett and team are dedicated to build this “for the people by the people” style, and they are implementing a lot of suggestions that the private beta testers gave. They seem to be open to anything and everything that makes sense (so if you use it – be sure to send them your feedback!)
Some changes that I would like to see include:
- Standard documentation
- Improved UI so users don't miss the "In Depth" section
- Ability to assign a dollar value to any type of conversion (this is key to me)
- Ability to look at as many results as you want in the Dashboard (instead of limiting it to 10 or 20)
- Ability to drag a specific box to be wider on the Dashboard
- Improved support of non-alphabetic characters in domain names (if a user signs up a domain with a trailing slash or anything else a tad out of the norm, it can cause data problems)
- Faster servers
All of these and more are being worked on and will most likely be offered. There was a suggestion for a WordPress Plugin and it is already released as well.
Some future features that are coming:
- Custom alerts, such as referrals from a certain domain or if you get Dugg or Stumbled.
- Mobile Dashboard to view your stats live on your cell phone.
If you’re looking to get more information on your search and social media campaigns, I would definitely recommend checking out the (free) BLVD Status software and be sure to email chris [at] blvdstatus.com with any suggestions or improvements or bugs.
*Fun fact* Curious as to where the name BLVD Status came from and to the strange title of this post? It was actually inspired by a lyric from this song by A Tribe Called Quest. The exact line is “When I left for Rosie I was Boulevard status.” The line basically means he was at the top of his game. Chris Bennett always liked the line and bought the domain with the hopes of having a business that could use it down the road.
Chris Winfield is the President and Co-Founder of 10e20, an Internet marketing company that specializes in social media & search marketing services and is based in New York & Florida. The Let’s Get Social column appears Tuesdays at Search Engine Land.
Opinions expressed in the article are those of the guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.