Metrics: the current buzzword for performance measurement. If you say, “Give me the metrics on that,” you sound really cool.
You can measure anything from anywhere…but who has time for that? Aren’t you busy running a business?
Even while we limit this conversation to solely measuring your online marketing activity, we must sort through a myriad of possibilities. It’s not possible to know everything, so we are left with discovering and applying only what we need to know.
If you’re new to the metrics world, these five will serve you well until you become a metrics nerd like the rest of us:
Sometimes called Reach, looking into total visits is a good place to start. This is the number that gives you a big-picture idea of how well your campaign is driving traffic. It is the biggest number you will get. All the numbers that follow total visits will be smaller, and as numbers decrease, the accuracy of the numbers also decreases. You’ve seen the plus (+) or minus (-) disclaimers on political poll numbers. The same holds true for all marketing metrics. Everything that follows your total visits will be measured against that number, so the bigger the better. How do you get more visits?
- Featured Image is at the top of the page; it is the first thing a visitor sees; make it eye-catching.
- Headline is the opening line, usually in larger print. Or it can be underlined or written in bold. The headline sets the tone of your post.
- Key Words in your headline will attract people who are searching for a particular subject; Estate Sale is an example of a Key Word Headline.
This is what you should really be after. It is the next step in the social conversation. There are several kinds of engagement metrics to consider.
It’s important that you take advantage of the analytics available for each social channel, and follow through by engaging with those who have cared enough to engage with you. Let’s look at the most important metrics in terms of engagement:
- Like is the quick, compulsive response to your post. Like is nice, but you want more.
- Comments are a step better. The visitor cares enough to make a comment, which invites more comments, which increases engagement.
- Share is even more desirable. This person will share your post on his or her own site, which can add hundreds of users to your original post.
- Clicks and Click Through Rate (CTR) are very important. You’ve attracted enough interest that people will go to your website for even more information about you. They may find more areas of common interest.
A metric found in Google Analytics that will tell you how many new visitors and how many recurring visitors you have. It will help you understand how effective your outreach efforts are and how “sticky” you site is for keeping visitors engaged long term.
This is one of your most important marketing metrics. It can mean filling out a lead form for further conversation, or it can lead to an actual sale. Conversions ultimately determine the profitability of your overall marketing efforts. The conversion number is much smaller than total visits or engagement, but bigger is not always better. Your conversion rate is a ROI victory, and that, after all is the goal.
I’ve saved the worst for last. The bounce rate shows you what percentage of visitors leave your website after a glance at your home page. They didn’t care or didn’t like what they saw enough to explore other pages. The longer a visitor stays on your site, the more apt they are to convert or pursue meaningful action. Not all bounces are bad. They may just indicate a mismatch of interests, but you want a low bounce rate. Keep track of your conversion-to-bounce rates.