Web metrics and analytics packages can be extraordinarily helpful for growing your business over the Internet. They can also be an enormous drain on your schedule if you start obsessing about incremental changes or trends that aren’t really statistically significant.
That means separating what’s meaningful from all the “noise” hidden within the numbers is an important skill for any marketer. Luckily, you can get a strong sense of how your website is doing just by examining a few key details, like the number of visits and conversions.
It also helps if you can spot potential problems quickly. Let issues fester, and they’ll cost you money day after day, week after week. With that in mind, here are four web metrics you can’t afford to ignore:
1. Low PPC Click-Through Rates
Low click-through rates on your PPC ads hurt you in two ways. First, they represent wasted opportunities; every impression is a chance for you to win a new customer who’s looking for your product or service right now. Just as importantly, low click-through rates eat away at your quality scores, making your search advertising campaigns much more expensive over time.
2. A high bounce rate
High bounce rates, especially on landing pages, mean your website isn’t really doing its job. Attracting visitors is only half the battle; if they don’t take any action after viewing your content, the chance to win them as a customer could be gone forever. High bounce rates are a sign you need to attract different visitors, tweak your messaging, or change your offer somehow.
3. One dominant traffic source
When all of your web traffic comes from one source – even if it’s Google – that can be a big problem. You’ll want to keep encouraging that flow of visitors, to be sure, but you’ll also want to diversify your Internet marketing approach so you won’t be vulnerable to a sudden drop-off in the future if advertising rates, search engine algorithms, or other factors change overnight.
4. Low time on site
If a high bounce rate represents a “dead end” on your business website, then low time on site means visitors are leaving your pages very quickly as a whole. Usually the easiest fix is to add more content and clean up your navigation structure. In other words, give your visitors more of what they want and make it easy for them to find and use.
Usually, when your business website is underperforming, there are some obvious symptoms. Learn to keep a close eye on these four web metrics, because no business or organization can afford to ignore problems in these areas.
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