Data-driven content improvements

Analytics data can help you find ways to improve your content.

Summary

People interact with government differently today. 76% of constituents interact with government through our website, more than any other medium. When we started the Mass.gov redesign nearly 2 years ago, we pledged to use data to make sure constituents have the best possible experience. We’ve made big improvements. But still, 60% of users that leave feedback tell us they did not find what they were looking for. Mass.gov’s new Analytics Dashboards (Beta) make data like this readily available and actionable.

Anywhere your Mass.gov content scores below 3 (on a scale of 0–4), here are 3 easy places to start to improve your content:

  • Fix broken links

  • Look at user feedback

  • Use the content performance checklists

Fix broken links

Today, there are more than 1,000 pages with broken links across Mass.gov. Fixing broken links is one of the quickest ways to improve your content’s user satisfaction and content quality scores.

When you visit the Content Quality tab in the Analytics Dashboards (Beta), you’ll see if there are any broken links that need to be addressed. If your content contains broken links:

  • Log into Siteimprove

  • Find the broken link(s)

  • Replace the broken link(s) with the appropriate one(s)

Look at user feedback

One thousand people out of 150,000 daily visitors leave us feedback. 60% answer “No” to the question at the bottom of every Mass.gov page, “Did you find what you were looking for on this webpage?” These users comments are extremely useful to identify where users are slipping through the cracks, and where we can make high-value improvements.

Use the Analytics Dashboards (Beta) and Feedback Manager to zero in on this feedback. On the dashboard’s User Satisfaction tab, you’ll see:

  • % of people answering “No” to “Did you find what you were looking for…” last month

  • Number of “No’s” per 1,000 pageviews last month

  • Number of “Yeses,” “Nos,” and total number of responses the last 90 days

  • Most common words used in feedback, displayed in a word cloud

Like everything on Mass.gov, the Analytics Dashboards (Beta) are a continual work-in-progress. These are not be-all end-all scores. They’re a starting point. They’re going to change as we learn more and refine how we determine each score. A high score doesn’t mean everything is perfect. What it does mean is that your content is on the right track.

To score a 4 on User Satisfaction in FY19, the current benchmark we’re asking everyone to aim for is:

  • Less than 3 “No’s” per 1,000 pageviews

  • Less than 50% of users leaving negative feedback

If either of these numbers are higher than this, visit the Feedback Manager to see what users are saying about your content.

After you make changes based on feedback you’ve received, make sure to check back to both the dashboards and Feedback Manager to watch negative feedback decrease and your User Satisfaction score rise.

Use the content performance checklists

A great way to stay on track is to make sure your content is following our editorial and style guidelines. In an effort to make this easier for you, we’ve developed content performance checklists that offer specific guidelines and suggestions according to the content type you’re working on. You can find these checklists in each dashboard in the Improve Your Content tab.

Aim to check off as many of the suggestions on these lists to make sure your content is on the right track. It’s also a good idea to reference these checklists as you create new content.

If you’ve worked through the checklist suggestions but still don’t see the improvements you expected, consider scheduling a Digital Services office hours session with our content team for a one-on-one discussion about your content.

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