Content on 99% of websites is delivered using text. The problem is that website owners have limited ability to determine what a visitor reads and how engaged they are with text on the website. This problem has been addressed in several ways, including complicated formulas like this one:
There are also several companies offering analytics to track the visitor’s pageviews, duration on the website, goal conversions, and traffic flow, to give website owners some idea of what pages are important and how visitors engage with their website. But until recently, the ability to know exactly what content a visitor is interested in and how engaged they are has been elusive. Recently, a solution has emerged in the form of audio analytics.
Website owners can record text content from their website into audio files. The audio file is then uploaded and linked to the website through an audio button placed at the beginning of the text. In the example below, the audio button appears at the beginning of the text from a webpage and plays the exact text in a human voice when the button is clicked:
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This gives website visitors a choice between listening to the content of a webpage and reading it. Many research studies have shown that some people like to read content and some like to listen to it. Using the segment of website visitors who like to listen to content, the audio analytics can build an understanding of how engaged their website visitors are. Using the right analytics, a website owner can track the visitor’s usage of the audio button to determine:
- The clicks per audio file
- The duration the website visitor listened to the audio file
- What platform the visitor used (Mobile, Tablet, Computer)
- What browser the visitor used
From the data gathered with the audio button, a website owner can begin to understand what content is working by using clicks and duration as an engagement indicator. For example, if the above paragraph with the audio button received 110 clicks in a day where other audio files on the website received over 300 clicks then I, as the website owner, would need to decide why that piece of content isn’t working as well. Do I need to change the content and text? Should the content be moved to another page or removed all together? Should I wait longer and gather more data?
Another example of this type of granular understanding about website content is if the above text with the audio button received above average clicks, but the average duration visitors listened to the content was only 20%, then I would need to consider the same issues as before.
This type of detail can significantly improve a website owner’s understanding of how the content is being received by the visitors (either in audio or text form, as they are mirrors of one another). The website owner can make decisions about their content to improve the website’s overall performance and visitor satisfaction.
Secondary benefits of the audio files, if used properly, are:
- Improved search rankings because of increased interactivity on the website from visitors clicking the audio files and an increase in the amount of content and links to the audio files
- Increased engagement by website visitors who stay on the website longer to listen to the audio files
- Ability to better deliver content to mobile users, as audio is a far superior platform for content delivery than text for mobile users