Collecting data is easy. Between Google Analytics and any number of third-party plug-ins or online tools, you can amass a mountain of information about your website fast. However, efficiently using that data to create a better performing strategy and strengthen your marketing and sales efforts is not as easy.
To be efficient, you must understand the data available and use what gives you the most actionable information. These six metrics will tell you what’s working and what’s not. Plus, they’ll keep everyone on the same page when discussing your successes.
Website Traffic Metrics Start with Visitor Count
Visitors, or traffic, is the metric used most often to compare sites around the world. While necessary to collect and review, traffic numbers don’t always tell you the whole story.
You can’t rely on your visitor count alone to help predict sales or to even inform changes you may sense are necessary to your marketing plan. Even so, it is a solid website traffic metric to start with when diving deeper into tracking your performance.
Bounce Rates Tell You More than Traffic Numbers
Once you know how many people are dropping by for a visit, you need to start thinking about what their experience is like when they arrive. Bounce rates let you know how long your traffic is staying before hitting the virtual road in search of a better answer to the question that brought them through your front door. Bounce rates are basically your main user experience indicator for your site.
Bounce Rate and Exit Page Tell You Different Things
Paying attention to both the bounce rate and exit page is important to track website metrics but they tell you very different things. While a bounce rate communicates how quickly a visitor left, the exit page will tell you the last place they visited.
If your most common exit page is a “contact us” form collection, that might be a good thing. If people are fleeing your site after visiting your pricing page, you might have an issue. And, if you are worried that your new slider will cause your mobile page to load too slowly, checking how often visitors left on that page might tell you to find a static image.
Referrals Let You Know How People Are Finding Your Site
Knowing where your traffic is coming from can be invaluable when planning new campaigns or contemplating where to spend your marketing budget. To intelligently plan ahead you need to know how people are finding you and your referral metric does exactly that.
Value Your Most Popular Pages
Knowing which pages attract the most customers and have the lowest bounce rate will help when deciding to make changes to your site or add more content. Don’t fix what isn’t broken. If you have a solid top-ten performing page, keep it and emulate its style when adding content to your site.
In the End, It’s All About Conversions
Whether you are converting strangers to subscribers, leads to qualified leads, or opportunities to closed sales, the purpose of your site is conversion. Knowing where and how often this is happening will inform your marketing and sales teams in everything they do.
Tracking website metrics can quickly become overwhelming. To be efficient, choose the metrics you value, understand their importance to your site, and disseminate them to the team members who need the information most. With a plan in place, you will quickly build on every success and rapidly change underperformers for the better.