Which Website Metrics Are Important?
On the surface, website analytics appear to provide a wealth of information about your site. A high volume of visitors and pageviews may suggest that your website is performing at its best. However, it’s not always clear whether indicators really reflect how a site performs in terms of meeting your business and marketing objectives.
In this post, we’ll go over a few popular metrics you might want to utilize to evaluate the performance of your website, as well as why, or if, they’re important.
The number of visitors to your website is measured by traffic metrics. While increased website traffic may appear to be a good thing, it’s crucial to analyze the sources of the traffic as well as what people do once they get there. A badly designed ad or marketing effort, for example, could drive a lot of traffic to your website. However, low-quality traffic might lead to low conversions and high bounce rates. Unless supplemented with other measures, raw traffic numbers rarely provide much insight into the performance of your website.
Page views: Page views, like traffic, are often meaningless as a stand-alone indicator. Many visitors (traffic) will result in a large number of page views. For a publication or advertising website, a more meaningful number, such as average page views per visitor, may be more appropriate. Page views, on the other hand, must be analyzed alongside other metrics for most websites to provide meaningful insight into their performance.
Time on site or page: Metrics that track how much time visitors spend on a site, such as how long they spend reading a blog, can be useful in some circumstances, but they don’t tell you whether the time spent was worthwhile. Some people may come to your site but leave without accomplishing anything. Keeping track of the visitor’s trip can help provide context. Visitors that arrive on your homepage, spend time on various interior pages, and then proceed to your contact page, for example, may show that the time spent on your website is driving conversion – even if the visitor does not take direct action on your contact page. They could be gathering information from a variety of vendors in order to contact you later.
The takeaway from “time on site or page” is that you must analyze what visitors are doing on the site in order for this measure to be meaningful.
Unique visitors: The number of unique visitors is calculated independently of how many times a visitor has visited a site. Unique visits may indicate a website’s general popularity, however, like “time on site” measures, unique visitor numbers must be interpreted in context. What are visitors looking at and clicking on? What brought them here, and how did they come to an end? Particularly if users return numerous times, unique visitors may be a better predictor of a website’s performance than the aforementioned indicators. However, like with most other analytics, you must examine if visitors are achieving the tasks you’ve set for them, such as filling out a contact form, downloading a PDF, or making a purchase.
Conversions are the king of conversions. It’s all that matters in the end. A website that converts traffic into sales and leads on a regular basis yet has modest traffic, page views, and unique visitors data might nonetheless be deemed high performing. But even then, you’ll need to go deeper.
Is it true that some websites convert better than others? How many of your conversions end up becoming qualified leads? How many of your qualifying leads become paying customers? Focusing on the metrics that matter will help you gain a better understanding of your return on investment for your website and marketing activities.
Website design, custom development, digital marketing, and managed web hosting are all services offered by ACS Web Design, an award-winning web design and development firm.