Almost every business in this day and age has a website. In fact some of those websites are pretty amazing works of art, fancy, shinny, informational, and even helpful to potential customers in some cases.
But...does your website work? Check out Does Your Website Generate Leads or Is It A High Tech Business Card? to understand more of what I mean. It's hard to know if you're website is working unless you dive under the hood, what does the data and analytics say?
5 Metrics Every Website Owner Should Track
Below are 5 metrics every website owner should track in order to know how their website is doing and measure areas of success, improvement, and how visitors are using your site.
Visitors By The Numbers
The first key metric you should check is the number of visitors to your site each day, week and month. Since your first challenge of having a website and promoting your business is attracting visitors to your website, this is a good place to start.
Most of the time you’ll have a steady number of visitors measured day over day throughout the month, but you should always keep an eye on spikes in traffic or sudden decreases. If and when you see either of these you’ll want to know why they happened, where did that spike come from, why the big drop off of visitors.
Where Did Your Visitors Come From?
Most marketers call this the “source.” The source metrics on your website will tell you where all your site’s traffic came from and when they first arrive i.e. what page they landed on first.
This is a great place to check and see how your top of funnel marketing efforts are working and see where people heard about your site. If you’ve been focusing on SEO and organic search volume, or maybe you’ve been doing social media promotion, which would mean you should be seeing lots of referral traffic from social media and blogs.
Every business will have a different mix of organic, referral and direct traffic, so it’s important to watch over time so you can track how your different marketing efforts are working from channel to channel driving traffic to your website.
Did Visitors Stick Around?
Otherwise known as the “Bounce Rate.” The bounce rate is defined as the percentage of people who left your website after viewing that page. In other words, a page with a high bounce rate isn’t performing well.
Bounce rate can be effected by: people leaving your site by clicking an external link on the web page, press the browser back button, type another url into the web browser, close the browser window or tab, don’t interact with the website for a long time.
You should always be looking at what pages have high bounce and comparing to your low bounce rate pages to understand whether visitors are sticking around or leaving right away.
Pages with high bounce rates are ineffective and are literally driving people away from your website.
How Are Visitors Finding You?
Your site keywords are a great way to figure out what visitors are actually looking for when they land upon your site. This metrics will show which terms people searched for when they find your site in a search engine.
Often times the top few keywords for your site will be some combination of your company name, but the results below that can tell you what people are trying to find when they come to your site.
If you notice you’re getting traffic to your site from a specific keyword you haven’t thought about or optimized for, you might have stumbled upon a keyword that isn’t very competitive, but may still be relevant for your business. If that's the case you should try putting together some content around that keyword to really pull ahead of your competitors.
Are Visitors Converting?
The conversion rate is the percentage of people who completed a desired action on any given page. This is term likely already familiar to you, but are you measuring it on your site? It can be an action like adding a product to you shopping cart and checking out, landing on a page and filling out a form to download your latest ebook, ending up on your site from an email and so on.
If visitors are not converting on your site you have one of two problems: the traffic you're getting isn’t valuable for your marketing efforts, or your site isn’t clear as to what visitors are suppose to be doing.
In short, if you are not converting visitors to leads and leads to customers, you’re not adding new customers and in turn, not generating revenue from potential new customers.
For your website to be successful it's much more than designing a pretty site, launching it and hoping it works. You need to dive into the data and analytics and measure if you’re successful based on your business goals and objectives.
Don’t know how to get started? Check out our Design Your Website With Marketing In Mind ebook for some tips and tricks on putting together your site.
Already have a site? Check A Handful Of The Best Marketing Tools For Your Business, near the end of the post there's a section on Measuring Performance, Analytics and Reporting with some helpful tools to integrate into your website.