Analytics and Metrics Part One: Website Analytics
ARE ANALYTICS IMPORTANT?
First, you should know that there is a bit of a learning curve involved to properly understanding internet marketing analytics. Getting internet marketing right is tricky, and it’s nearly impossible (even for the brightest of internet marketers) to get it all right the first time.
Additionally, search engines like Google and Bing are constantly changing their algorithms in order to produce more relevant results. As such, tactics that worked well one month ago may not work so well the next month. Also, a marketing tactic that works well for one audience may not work for another target audience. There’s just no “one size fits all” method for internet marketing.
Because there is no “one-size-fits-all” method for successful internet marketing, it’s important to track your marketing efforts. Tracking helps you identify what is and what is not working and helps you improve and customize your marketing efforts to best fit your needs, and the needs of your target audience. Ultimately, using analytics properly helps you refine your strategy and save you money, getting better results from your campaigns.
What Metrics Should You Use?
Let’s discuss the metrics you should pay attention to and what they mean.
The first thing you should focus on is activity on your website(s). You will want to pay specific attention to the Unique Visitors, Repeat Visitors, Traffic Sources, Most & Least Favorite Pages, Bounce Rate, and Landing Page Conversion Rates.
- Unique Visitors – The total number of visitors to your website during a specific period. This only includes new visitors, not repeat visits by the same person.
This statistic tells you what type of reach your marketing efforts are having. You may have hundreds of visits to your site, but if they are all from your mom, you know you’re not reaching a wide enough audience. The goal of your campaign should be to reach as many unique individuals as possible.
Remember, at this point, visitors to your website are “Unique Visitors”, not “Leads”.
- Repeat Visitors – The number of visitors who come back to your website more than once.
The goal is not to have all new visitors all of the time. Repeat visitors often indicate that you have fans out there that are consistently consuming your content. 15% – 20% is a good percentage of new visitors to repeat visitors. This indicates that, while you continue to see “Unique Visitors”, you are simultaneously creating a loyal following.
- Bounce Rate – The bounce rate indicates the percentage of people who visit your site and immediately click out of your site. You want to keep as many visitors on your website as possible. Theoretically, the lower the bounce rate, the better your conversion rate and, consequentially, the higher potential for conversions.
The following chart provides some insights on the bounce rates for various industries:
In general, a good bounce rate would be anything under 50% – 60%.
- Average Time Spent is fairly self-explanatory and is basically just the average amount of time all visitors to a page spend on that specific page. This metric tells you if visitors are actually reading the content.
- Identified Leads are leads you add to your marketing automation platform in order to begin a Lead-Nurturing
- Page Views is a record of the views of a page on your site. High page-view statistics indicate that a page has relevant information for the target audience and the keywords are doing their job of driving traffic to your pages.