Analytical Options for Social Media - dummies

By Jan Zimmerman, Deborah Ng

Depending on what you’re trying to measure, you may need data from some of the analytical tools available internally from a particular social media channel or statistics from social bookmarking sites such as AddToAny or from URL shorteners.

The following table summarizes which social media services integrate with Google Analytics for traffic monitoring purposes and which also offer their own internal performance statistics.

Analytics for Specific Social Networks
Website URL Integrates with Google Analytics? Own Analytics Package?
Facebook Page Insights
Yes Yes
Google+ Platform Insights https://developers.­features/
Yes Yes
LinkedIn Analytics Tab http://help.linkedin.
Yes Yes
Meetup Group Stats
Yes Yes
Ning (uses Google Analytics)­ning3help/
Yes No
Twitter Analytics Yes Yes
Yes Yes (must have an account with a channel)

Register for free optional statistics whenever you can.

One type of free optional statistics is particularly handy: traffic generated by shortened URLs. Be sure to select a free shortener that offers analytics, such as

  • Bitly: A free account (registration required) to track statistics from shortened links

  • Google URL Shortener: Google’s free URL shortener

  • Hootsuite’s free URL shortener

  • Snipurl: Stores, manages, and tracks traffic on short URLs

To access a shortcut to results for links shortened with Bitly, paste the short URL into a browser, followed by the plus sign (+) (for example, A page appears showing how many clicks the short URL received. After you sign into your Bitly account, you can see additional metrics, such as those shown here.

After you log into your account, Bitly offers several displays for traffic statistics for a shorten
Credit: Reproduced with permission of Watermelon Mountain Web Marketing.
After you log into your account, Bitly offers several displays for traffic statistics for a shortened URL.

You can use a dashboard tool like Netvibes to see all your stats in one convenient place.