Many people believe that the success of a digital marketing strategy can be measured by leads and sales alone. This could not be further from the truth. The ways in which marketing outcomes are measured are becoming increasingly granular – and can be very useful when it comes to determining whether – for example – your brand strategy needs tweaking, or which social media platform you should be focusing on most intently.
With programmes such as Google Analytics now offering a dizzying range of key performance indicator (KPI) figures, we’ve put together a few of the most useful metrics for businesses. Whilst not all of them will necessarily be vital for your business, they represent a good place to start.
1. Overall traffic
All of your company’s digital marketing campaigns should aim to send potential customers to a page somewhere on your website. In this way, looking at website traffic data on a regular basis will offer a range of insights such as which campaigns are driving the most traffic and at what times.
A steep decline in website traffic could also alert you to technical issues, broken links or a Google Algorithm penalty that requires attention.
2. Traffic according to source
Measuring traffic by source will provide insight into which marketing platforms work best for your business. Google Analytics users can track which users come across your website via:
- Direct search (those that have typed your URL straight into their search bar)
- Organic search (those that have clicked through from a search engine result)
- Social media (those that have clicked through from social posts or profiles)
- Referrals (those that have clicked links from another website)
Figuring out which channel works best will help you to use your marketing team’s time wisely.
3. Average session duration
This figure tells you how long visitors spend on your website during a single session. Of course, whilst session averages vary widely between industries, longer sessions tend to indicate that customers are interested and engaged. If session durations tend to be on the short side, you may want to start looking into making your website easier to navigate or making your content more engaging.
4. Bounce rate
Bounce rate tells you the percentage of visitors who leave your website after viewing a single page. It is a useful metric as it can alert you to issues such as slow loading times, navigation difficulties, and technical errors.
5. Returning visitors vs. New visitors
This metric tells you how many people keep coming back to your website and, therefore, whether you are able to offer a steady stream of valuable information that people crave more of. Ideally, you should be drawing in a healthy number of new and returning visitors.
To increase new and returning visitors, it is important to publish engaging blog content that search engines can pick up easily, as well as promoting this content via email and social media.