How is your website performing?
It’s 2019, so by now, you should have learned that all companies should have a website.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re a writer looking to freelance, an IT company, or a local grocery store. If you’re looking to do business anywhere, you need to have some online presence.
What you may not have realized yet is that building a website is only half the job. You also need to cultivate steady traffic to the website, you need to improve your SEO and watch you bounce rate. The many terms for different website metrics can intimidate most people.
Yet, watching the metrics on your website isn’t actually too different from anything else. It’s all a matter of understanding how different metrics interact, and what they mean for your website. And it’s 2019, so it’s about time you learned what they are.
Keep reading below to learn what website metrics matter to you in the new year!
Before diving into the nitty-gritty details of website metrics, you need to be comfortable with looking at an overview. Usually, it’s the first thing you see after opening the analytics of your website. It also usually shows the most important information you need first.
After you’re comfortable gauging your website’s success through the overview, you can start diving in. While the overview page won’t ever be able to point to a specific problem with your website, it can let you know if there is one.
One of the things people usually look at first when they start trying to grow their traffic is their total visits. It’s a simple number to understand, and it’s good that people are usually curious about it. This is a good thing for two reasons.
First, by watching at the total visits, it shows that the website owner is committed to growing it. Second, watching the total visits is a good way to tell how effective a website is at cutting through the noise. To succeed online, your website needs to stand out from the rest, and the higher your total visits the more successful you are.
Just don’t confuse visits with engagement, impressions, or even page views! They’re all different, and they all measure different things.
There is one major shortcoming with the total visits metric. It’s basically just a ticker that goes up whenever something lands on your website. It doesn’t distinguish between returning people and new traffic, or even between bots and people.
The new sessions metric lets you see how many new people are visiting your website. With this number, you can easily tell how quickly you’re growing. You’ll be able to tell what you’re doing correctly to attract new people.
The new session metric shows you what you’re doing right. But that’s enough to build a good website. Your bounce rate shows you if you’re doing something too.
This measures how many people leave your website after glancing on the homepage. Your bounce rate measures how many people visit your website but never engage with it. A high rate can mean you are attracting many bots, or that your web design needs improvement.
Of course, people don’t just randomly click through websites on the internet. Instead, your traffic needs to come from somewhere. With the channels metric, you’ll be able to tell exactly where.
Your channels show you whether most people are coming from Google searches or from direct links. It can also reveal how loyal your audience is by showing how many people go directly to your website, instead of clicking a link.
Most of the time you can also tell which platform people are visiting your website on. You may notice more mobile users than you expect after digging through your channels.
If you’re looking to boost your web presence, you’re likely looking to invest in marketing as well. Through popular platforms like Google Analytics, you can measure whether that marketing is paying off.
The pay per lead metric shows you how much you are paying for each person’s click. The metric measures the cost your sinking into a marketing campaign. Then, it compares that to other metrics to give you an idea of how much you’re really spending.
While you always want to know how much you’re spending on marketing, you also want to know if it’s paying off. That’s where the value per visit metric comes in.
It counts the different ways you make revenue on your website and compares it metrics measuring your traffic. Through this, you can see if it’s worth it to spend so much money driving people to your website. By comparing the value per visit to the cost per lead, you can get a better sense of your campaign, and of your budget.
Whenever you start a marketing campaign, you should have a goal in mind. Usually, it’s to get people to buy a specific product, but it could also be to drive people to a specific page. That goal is called a conversion.
Your conversion rate measures how successful you are at getting people to do what you want. All you need to do is set your goal to be either sell a product, visit a webpage, or anything else. Then your platform will calculate how much you succeed at that goal.
One of the most important, and underrated, metrics is your engagement time. It’s a simple metric that shows how long people spend on a specific webpage of your website.
However, the metric is crucial for media companies or websites with blogs. It’s a direct measurement of how well you keep people’s attention. The more you can keep their attention, the better off you’ll be on almost every other metric.
While it’s crucial to know how well you keep people’s attention, it’s also important to know what people are interested in. Without knowing why people are coming to your website in the first place, how can you serve them?
You top pages list shows what people naturally flock to, and therefore what they’re interested in. While your homepage will usually dominate your top pages list, analyzing the other pages on it can reveal new avenues of growth.
It’s not enough to just drive people to your website. You should also make sure that they are engaging with your website. You want to make sure they are consuming content and engaging with it.
By watching your interactions per visit, you can tell how people use your website. If you notice that people click on pictures more than links, you may want to consider setting up galleries, for example. That way, you’re bound to raise your engagement, as well as every other metric.
It’s good to know if people are instantly clicking off your website. Yet, your exit pages list can tell you more than your bounce rate. That’s because you can pinpoint specific issues through your exit pages lists.
Sometimes you may notice that a lot of people are clicking away from a specific page. If that happens, you may want to check and make sure it’s working correctly. A webpage may also just not be well designed and may warrant a redesign.
Companies of all kinds want nothing more than to know their return on investment. It’s what lies at the core of profit, and that’s no different with marketing campaigns. By looking at your ROI, you can tell if a specific marketing campaign was worth it.
The ROI also helps you measure a campaign’s overall success. It can help give you a sense of what worked and what didn’t so you know what to do better for the next one.
One of the most common exit pages people find is the final page in a checkout process. While this can come as a result of typical window-shopping, it can also indicate something wrong with the process.
If you notice a checkout page rising on your exit pages list, be sure to run through the process yourself. Try purchasing your own product to make sure people aren’t leaving the page for anything other than nervous behaviour.
There are few things more annoying than ads, except for revenue lost when people use adblockers. Usually, platforms don’t measure how many people use adblockers on your website. There’s an easy way to tell who’s using them, though.
All it takes is a few lines of code to tell whether users are using adblockers. These same lines of code can introduce a new landing page that educates them on the importance of ads.
The internet is a wild place. Knowing your way around it takes more than a search engine, and building a business on it is tough. That doesn’t mean it’s impossible, though.
All you need to do is educate yourself on the different website metrics that measure your overall success. Unlike in the offline world, you can’t tell if you’re doing well just by counting how many people pay you a visit.
You also need to host a website in the first place, with a reliable and dedicated company. Contact us, and we will make sure that your website finds a new home on our servers. We also feature a list of open-source apps to set you up for success!