Archive for April, 2016

Miss last week’s post which walked through the content creator’s analytics journey? Check it out here to see how writers everywhere can put attention data to work.


Now that we’ve explored how writers can add analytics to their workflows for optimized stories, let’s dive into how producers can get the most out of every story in real time.

Producers and Layout Editors know that there’s much more to a link than meets the eye. A module for related content, an inline link citation, a recommended stories section — these are the kinds of critical facets of article layout that build audiences.

That’s why Producers around the world turn to Chartbeat Publishing for data-backed decisions. Here are just a few ways they can:


Combat Drop-Off

The Chartbeat Heads Up Display locates where on article pages high percentages of readers are dropping off. Within the Heads Up Display, a screen overlay that projects real-time visitor data on top of home, section, or article pages, producers can hone in on the Scroll Depth Indicator. It’ll spot where large portions of your audience are bouncing. Try putting links where drop-off is highest to increase the likelihood that audiences will recirculate to additional content.


Curate Links

By diving into the troves of historical data housed in Chartbeat Report Builder, our flexible historical reporting tool, producers can identify the articles that have performed strongest by referrer type, device type, and topic. If you’re looking for linking more than just related content, historical data is a good place to see what pieces might pair well together. High-engagement pieces with high-traffic pieces? Short-form with long-form? Report Builder has the answers you’ve been looking for.


Optimize for Multi-Platform Responsiveness

The Heads Up Display is not only fully responsive but also filters by device type. By resizing browser windows, editors can see how audiences travel through their site or section on any device. That means if you see a high-traffic article with particularly low recirculation on mobile, you can take immediate action to make sure that related links and content are viewable on multiple platforms.


For more information on how Chartbeat Publishing helps Layout Editors keep it fresh, reach out to

Two weeks ago, Facebook opened up its Instant Articles platform to all publishers. And last week, Facebook announced that they will be updating their News Feed algorithm once again. The most recent change to their algorithm will look at predictions of whether a user in the Facebook mobile browser or on an Instant Article page will click into an article and actually read that article. Time spent viewing the article will continue to be a large factor in News Feed rankings.

When Facebook makes changes, the publishing industry reacts with questions and concerns (see, for example, here, here, or here). That said, each time we here at Chartbeat have looked at Facebook referrer traffic in response to one of these changes, we haven’t seen any major effect across our network.  Here’s what the median percentage of traffic from Facebook looks like across our network so far this year:


Besides the typical weekday / weekend variations, traffic from Facebook is remarkably stable. We see Facebook driving between 40-50% of traffic on mobile devices during peak weekday traffic and about 12-15% of traffic on desktop devices during peak weekday traffic (note that these numbers exclude cases in which we have no data for referrer, as is the case for dark social). Even given the two big changes that happened this month, we are actually seeing a slightly higher-than-normal amount of referral traffic! This increased traffic is on the order of 3-4% for the median (smaller if you look at the average; 1%).

It is important to note that these curves show the median proportion across our network. Individual sites respond in different ways, so you may have seen your traffic rise or fall in response to one of these changes. Sitting in the newsroom, it is hard to see the forest for the trees, so to speak — we have the power of statistics on our side. But from what we continue to see, the majority of publishers are incredibly adept at responding to Facebook’s changes and are keeping referral numbers high.

Amid all the activity in a digital newsroom, it can be difficult to find the time and tools to put traffic analytics to work and really get to know your audience. There are plenty of raw numbers out there, but which are the most meaningful for you – your role, your workflow, your daily goals?

Well worry no more, because we’ve got the answers. In this series, we’re going to walk you through what each member of a publishing team, from content creators to social media mavens to audience analysts, can do with attention metrics and Chartbeat tools to get the most out of every story.

Let’s start at the beginning of each story that gets posted: with the writer.

Quality. Quantity. Speed. These are the three goals of stellar content creators. In pursuit of each of these goals, you’ve got to be constantly asking why. Why is my article spiking among Facebook readers? Why is mobile traffic predominantly from Europe? Why is my story on Donald Trump less engaging than my average?

Of course, you can only answer these kinds of questions once you’re armed with real-time audience analytics. If you’re the principal force behind quality content, you’ve got to be the front line of data optimization. That’s where Chartbeat comes in. We help you measure, pique, and keep audience attention.

Content creators everywhere can use Chartbeat Publishing to answer:

  1. How is your content performing – second-by-second, pixel-by-pixel? 

    Measure meaningfully. All Chartbeat tools give a holistic overview of content, highlighting not only raw traffic and referral sources, but engagement as well.

    Never miss an opportunity. The realm of digital publishing is full of surprises, but when you’re able to map audience behavior in real time you’ll never be left behind. The Chartbeat Editorial Dashboard helps hundreds of thousands journalists worldwide understand what content is resonating with their audiences right now – and what to do about it. We even notify you when a story is taking off.
  2. How can you be empowered to make editorial changes in the moment, acquire new visitors, and build a loyal audience? 

    Use the Heads Up Display, a screen overlay that displays real-time visitor data on top of home, section, or article pages, to see how far down the page readers are scrolling and restructure content accordingly. Where do readers bounce? Is your best quote buried too deep in the story? Do the opening paragraphs contain too much background?

    Content’s got to work for all audiences. Pivot on mobile traffic in the Editorial Dashboard to understand how a story is performing among mobile readers. There, you’ll not only see how many mobile readers are active on your content, but for how long they’re engaging.
  3. How can you take control of your data in real-time?

    The Chartbeat Publishing Suite puts data in the hands of the people who know the work best. Use the Daily Content Perspective to learn what referral sources love your content. Use the Editorial Dashboard to determine whether your message is landing. Use the Heads Up Display to tie it all together. There’s a Chartbeat tool for every step of the content creation process.

For more information on how Chartbeat Publishing helps Content Creators keep it cool, reach out to

Today at F8 the Facebook team announced opening their Instant Articles to all publishers. Their aim is to make a better, faster mobile reading experience for all Facebook users. We’re thrilled to be an inaugural partner and to officially announce our launch of Facebook Instant Article tracking within Chartbeat tools.

Inside the Dashboard

Within the Chartbeat Publishing dashboard, we’ve added a section on the left-hand side labeled Distribution. Here, alongside the Accelerated Mobile Pages (AMP) integration, this section will display the percentage of concurrent visitors engaging with your Facebook Instant Article content.

You’ll see this fancy new field once you’ve integrated Facebook Instant Articles with Chartbeat.

Quick tip: You can check the Facebook Instant Article box to pivot the entire Dashboard to show how this discrete audience is consuming your content, engaging on the page, etc. You can do the same with AMP, App or Site traffic within the Distribution section to assess exactly where and how your audience is consuming content in real time.

Within Report Builder

As you and your editorial and analytics teams are continuously building and testing new strategies to reach new audiences, we’re busy building new ways to help you understand which channels are working to build, grow, and monetize that audience—and which need some fresh thinking and tinkering.

Enter: Distribution segmentation within our Report Builder tool. Once you Report Builder users have implemented Facebook Instant Articles, you’ll immediately be able to track how your Instant Article readers engage month to month, day to day, or even down to the minute of the day.


So what’s next?

Facebook Instant Articles let your team build loyalty and brand awareness of your content—and engage with that content quickly and completely. In the past we’ve found engagement metrics to be a direct correlation with audience loyalty, so the more they read your content, the better — wherever they are. Using this data, we hope to see your team adapting their distribution strategies in real time and over time.

But you tell us. We’re eager to hear how your team is building out a strategy for Facebook Instant Articles and how we can help. If you’re up for a chat with our Product team, let us know.

If you’re ready to get started with our Facebook Instant Articles integration right away, check out the documentation here.

Phone-owning journalists, we’ve got some big news for you.

Today, we’re releasing our new, improved, powerful mobile iOS app.

For the last four months, our team has been working hard to build an enjoyable, on-the-go experience that brings you all your most important data—whether you’re in line for groceries or just stepping away from your desk. We think you’re really going to like it. Let’s dig into how we made it happen.

It all started with listening: We read through your feedback emails, documented your bug reports, and most importantly, we met in person with a whole bunch of you. We wanted to know what you dug about our current app and what you thought might make the experience better.

Through many design iterations and feedback sessions with our beta testers (huge thanks to y’all!), here’s how we translated what we heard from you into the new app:

First things first, your Top Pages

This is the guts. This is what we heard is most important for you to see. Now your site’s Total Concurrents are front and center, and we added in the animated dial to let you know, top level, where you’re at right now in a clean, no frills design.

Your Top Pages@2x

Richer traffic sources

Tab over to Overview, and you can view how different traffic sources are contributing to your concurrent count over time. Pivot left and right to home in on top referrers within those categories. This feature is now also available on the page detail level, so you can better understand where your readers are coming from for every piece of content.

Richer traffic sources@2x

Page deep dives

Speaking of page details, you can now zoom in on the content that matters to you most. Tapping on a particular story will bring you to a thorough overview of how that post is performing.

Filtering galore

You want to see what’s important to you. Now you can click on Filter in the top right of your navigation and choose a section, author, traffic source, or referrer to dig deep into the traffic patterns you’re seeing in real time.

Filtering galore@2x

More data, more viz

You know just as well as we do that it’s not just the clicks you get, but the attention you keep that matters. You’ll now find two signature Chartbeat metrics — Recirculation and Engaged Time — in the mix. These are the kind of meaningful metrics that help you grow your audience, not just scavenge for pageviews.

More data, more viz.@2x
You’ll also get breakdowns of your sites’ visitors by their frequency of return and what device they are using in an engaging visual display.


The app will now remember, automatically save, and return you back to the last site you were viewing the next time you open the app. No more futzing with settings.

Now, hop on over to the app store and download it!

And while we hope you love this update, there’s always work to be done. Want to help us prioritize the wish list? Email your thoughts to And if you have something nice to say *fingers crossed*, be a pal and leave us a review in the app store?

Before we close out this post, a huge tip of the hat to the Chartbeat dev team who wrote this entire app using React Native, which we were synchronously learning and teaching ourselves as the React community was building it. At Chartbeat, we take our commitment to learning and self-improvement seriously, and as you can see, the results are pretty fantastic.

Please note: some features are available to Chartbeat Publishing clients only. Want the app in all its glory? Send us a note to to learn more about upgrading to our Chartbeat Publishing suite.

PS: Android users, we hear you, it’s coming… If you could do us a favor and fill out this form we’ll be sure to keep you in the loop!

For a full walkthrough of all the new bells and whistles check out our orientation guide.